[This post is part of a blogging collaboration by Later Levels and Hundstrasse called #BloggersWhoStream. Make sure to give them both credit and follow the hashtag on Twitter for more posts from the community!]
Having a good mic won’t help your stream if it isn’t configured properly. Particularly if you have a condenser mic, which you probably do if you own a USB mic. Condenser mics – such as the Blue Snowball, Blue Yeti, or the Audio-Technica AT2020 among many others – work best in a controlled studio environment.
Unfortunately, most of us aren’t streaming in professional studios. Without any adjustments, your voice will probably distort when you get loud, be difficult to hear over your gameplay when you speak softly, and pick up weird ambient noises in-and-around your house.
It’s mission critical to address these issues, as your microphone is your primary method of communication and content creation on stream. You can address most of these issues in OBS, Streamlabs OBS, or whatever digital or analog mixer you may use. Follow along with this guide and it should get your microphone audio to a better place!
Does the old adage, “Good things come in small packages” hold true for the Blue Yeti Nano? This mini reboot of the wildly-popular original attempts to retain the overall sound quality of the original in a smaller package while removing a few features specifically designed for recording singing vocals or musical instruments. Blue’s hope is that the Nano will be your go-to mic for voice recording, podcasting, or streaming. Having bought one for myself, I put it through its paces.
I’m growing out of my Blue Snowball Ice. As an entry-level solution that provides decent sound and ease of use at a budget price, it’s a fantastic choice. By leveraging the built-in compressors, noise gates, and noise filters in OBS, I was able to address some of the mic’s issues while also improving its sound quality.
Even so, I’m at a point in my streaming career where I want a mic that sounds even better. However, I’m at a crossroads. Do I get a better USB mic? Or do I transition into an XLR setup?
During a recent Tetris 99 stream, we had a spirited discussion about how to improve as a streamer on Twitch. There was enough interesting conversation from that stream that I felt it was best to break out those clips into a separate post!
Looking to start streaming?
Having the right hardware is just a part of the overall experience, but it’s an important foundation to have. Without the right gear, your stream could suffer from lag, blurriness, your voice sounding scratchy through a crappy microphone, or any number of other problems that negatively impact your production quality. With so many good streams out there, it’s important to not let your hardware deter others from enjoying your show.
Compiling the lessons I’ve learned over the past two years, here’s a list of hardware upgrades to consider as you build the streaming rig of your dreams!