Best microphones for creating online courses - prioritylearn

5 Best microphones for creating online courses

Thinking of creating an online course? Whether it’s a free or a paid course, quality is key to keeping your students coming back for more. Audio is one of such key factors when creating an online course. The challenge is that there are various options available on the market which can make choosing the best microphones for creating your online courses quite tricky.

Imagine being an expert in a field or having some experience on a topic. After weeks or months of research, you identify a target market.

You decide to deliver this knowledge to your market through online courses. You choose your desired means of content delivery.

Whether you want to create an eLearning website of your own or you decide to leverage one of the already existing marketplaces like Udemy or  Coursera.

After hundreds of hours of work writing out your content, you decide the content is good enough or ready to be converted into video lessons.

The next milestone now is how to produce the best quality product for your learners. This means producing the best quality videos and audio.

Presentation is everything. Having great content is a huge advantage but this can be greatly affected by the quality of your end product.

When creating these courses, you need to produce quality videos coupled with quality audio to keep your students coming back for more.

Best Microphones For Creating Online Courses

With millions of courses out there in this age of competition, competitors in each respective field are always vying for supremacy and dominance in the market.

If your students want to enjoy your lessons but are struggling to hear or are distracted by some kind of noise, most will opt for better quality content providers.

Fortunately, there are several microphones available for producing online lessons. These enable you to create some of the best quality sounding courses on the market.

Below are some of the best microphones available on the market for creating online courses.

Although these options help produce the best quality audio for your courses, some external factors can affect your audio quality and should therefore be taken note of and addressed before recording.

Echo in the recording room

best microphones for creating online courses

Sound is alive will bounce off hard surfaces and certain objects. Echoes can come from everywhere including the walls and the floor of a room, whether hardwood or tile.

How to reduce echo in the recording room

To reduce the echo from the floor, simply add a carpet and this will reduce the echoes from the floors.

Avoid recording on a glass surface or table as noise will easily bounce off of these surfaces. Additionally, recording away from windows will also help in reducing echoes.

It is also worthy of note that having more fabric, sofas, cushions, and stuff in the room will help reduce the echo substantially.

Concrete walls and other hard wall surfaces cause a lot of sound deflection which results in intensive echoes.

Heavy, lined window curtains and draperies which extend to the floor help muffle sound, reducing echo and ambient noise from inside and outside the house.

Canvas paintings, tapestries, and decorative wall hangings can also absorb sound to reduce echo.

It is worthy of note that framed pictures or other artwork enclosed in glass on the other hand will deflect sound

There are other products on the market to help reduce echoes but these tips when leveraged significantly reduces echo in a recording room. Some of these other options include acoustic panels.

Additionally, platforms like Udemy can be quite strict when it comes to the quality of audio from content producers.

Echoes and background noise are two of the biggest factors for rejection on Udemy.

Background noise when recording

Noise in the background can make a video impossible to listen to at the very least annoying.

These can range from the fan of your computer, heater, fan, refrigerator, television, radio, other appliances, or even open windows.

How to reduce background noise in the recording room

The most obvious solution to most of these issues is to turn these devices off. Another option is leveraging editing software to reduce background noises.

Although these editing tools can considerably reduce the background noise, they also have the added effect of degrading the quality of your voice.

It is worthy of note that the result from using any software to reduce background noise can differ based on the software being used and the settings.

The computer or laptop fan can also be a source of noise when recording. To solve this, simply click your window logo if you are on a windows machine, type “control panel” and select “sound”.

Select “recording” and then select your default microphone, right-click and then select “disable” to turn off your in-built microphone.

This will ensure that your external microphone is still being used but the internal microphone which is close to the computer and therefore can easily pick the computer fan sound is inactive.

Position of the microphone

When recording, the microphone shouldn’t be set far from your mouth. It is worthy of note that having a microphone in the frame when recording will not affect your learners’ response to your audio.

Buying the wrong microphone

When it comes to choosing the right microphone for your online course, most people resort to buying whichever type of microphones they see others use.

In most cases, this may not be the ideal microphone for creating online video courses.

Whether your intended online course will be talking head videos or a screencast, specific features of the microphone should be considered.

When considering a microphone, it is important to remember the type of video content you will be creating.

In the case of screencast videos, one key feature or functionality to consider is its Cardioid functionality.

This type of microphone picks up the noise that is close and phases out or reduces any other noise in the background.

Although people recommend some omnidirectional microphones on the market, unfortunately, some of these end up picking up all sounds in the background.

When considering microphones for your talking head videos, it is important to ensure that you select either a lavalier or shotgun microphone.

Most lavalier microphones can be omnidirectional but by positioning them correctly, you can produce great results.

This kind of microphone is small and can be clipped into clothing. This is quite common in TV interviews, especially when these are done outdoors.

They deliver clear great sound since they can be positioned quite close to the mouth. Lavalier microphones are also unintrusive and allow complete freedom with the hands.

Top microphones for creating online courses

Now that our environment is set, the next step is to identify the most suitable microphone for creating your online course.

The options listed in this article can be leveraged to create talking head videos or screencast videos.

When selecting a good microphone for creating online courses, the quality of sound is key and emphasis needs to be placed on that.

The Blue Yeti USB Microphone has been referred to as one of the best USB microphones on the market by many experts.

It is one of the most popular microphones on the market. This is used by experts ranging from YouTubers, Bloggers, and Podcasters.

Weight

It weighs 3.51 Pounds

The microphone comes in at about a weight of 1.2 Pounds and the stand about 2.2 Pounds.

Although the Blue Yeti can fold down to make it easier for storage or packing, it is worthy of note that the Blue Yeti was designed to stay put on a desk.

This is because of its fairly large and sturdy build.

Setup

The Blue Yeti is easy to set up. It comes with a USB cable and is compatible with both Windows operating systems ranging from Windows 7 or higher.

It is also compatible with any MacBooks running macOS 10.10 or higher.

Simply plug it into your computer and start recording.

Design

On the front of the microphone, you will find the Blue Yeti logo, a mute button as well as a headphone volume control knob.

When the microphone is turned on, the mute button stays red but flashes red when the mute button is enabled.

At the bottom of the Blue Yeti, there is a 3.5-millimeter headphone jack that allows latency-free, real-time monitoring of your microphone to verify recording levels.

The headphone jack can also be used to listen to the computer’s audio. There’s also a standard USB port at the bottom of the microphone.

The Blue Yeti also comes with a stand microphone stand as well as a standard thread-mount on the bottom to remove the microphone from the included stand and put on a standard microphone studio mount.

On the back of the microphone, there is a gain control knob that can be used to adjust the sensitivity of the microphone.

There’s also a pattern selector where you can choose up to four(4) different recording settings. These include cardioid mode, stereo mode, omnidirectional mode, and bidirectional mode.

It is advisable that when you are using the microphone for screencasting online courses or classes, the cardioid mode is selected.

The other settings can also be utilized especially when the lesson is being recorded by more than one individual.

Cardioid modeCardioid mode records sound sources that are directly in front of the microphone, delivering rich, full-bodied sound.
This minimizes sounds around the sides and sides of the microphone.
Stereo modeUses both the left and right channels to capture a wide, realistic sound image
Omnidirectional modePicks up sound equally from all around the mic. It’s best used in situations when you want to capture the ambiance of "being there". This is good for when there are multiple people in the room recording.
Bidirectional modeRecords from both the front and rear of the microphone and eliminate sounds from the sides of the microphone. This is good for recording a duet or a two-person interview.

Pros

  • Affordable
  • Zero-latency
  • Headphone output
  • Plug ‘n play
  • Multi-pattern selection
  • Cardioid

Cons

  • Some users have complained about delayed responses from the customer support
  • Doesn’t come with a pop filter
  • Controls are a bit flimsy

Like most products, the Blue Yeti Microphone has its setbacks but it remains a great microphone, perfect for creating online courses.

Tip:

When using the Blue Yeti microphone, it is worth noting that the microphone is a side-address microphone and therefore accepts from an angle perpendicular to the microphone.

This means when using the microphone, it is advisable to speak to the side of the microphone as opposed to speaking at or to the top.

It is advisable to remain fairly close to the microphone when recording to capture rich quality sounds.

It is also advisable to invest in a pop filter for the Blue Yeti microphone to prevent the loud popping noises when recording very close to the microphone.

Although the Blue Yeti microphone is great at minimizing background noise, it is advisable to eliminate as much background noise as possible in Cardioid mode.

When considering microphones for your online courses, one of the most noted products on the market is the PowerDeWise Lavalier Lapel Microphone.

According to Udemy using a lavalier microphone is ideal when creating a talking head video.

These can be clipped on the clothes, freeing the hands when recording your content. This type of microphone can easily be used outdoors or indoors to produce quality content.

This microphone can connect directly to your smartphone, camera, or your computer.

This makes it one of the best microphones for creating online courses

Weight

Like most lavalier microphones, the PowerDeWise lavalier microphone is small in size.

Setup

The PowerDeWise Lavalier Microphone is easy to set up. Simply connect the 3.5-millimeter jack to your phone or camera to start using.

Design

Being a small microphone, it comes with little configurations on the device itself. It is easy to clip onto any piece of cloth you are wearing.

It has a long cable which makes it easy to record away from the camera if necessary and still produces quality audio.

It also comes with a small strap to keep things nice and tidy when not in use and also a small pouch for storing the microphone.

Pros

  • Very affordable
  • Great audio quality
  • Longer audio wire (about 6 and a half feet long)
  • Comes with easy to use clip-on
  • Comes with an extension cord
  • Comes with a 4 to 3 pin adapter
  • Comes with 3 foam windscreens

Cons

  • Can pick up buzzing sound when close to some devices like a plasma television
  • Noticeably larger than some lavalier microphones

The PowerDeWise Lavalier Lapel microphone has made a place for itself in the lavalier microphone market and it’s one of the best microphones for creating online lessons.

Tip:

Like most lavalier microphones, it is advisable to position the microphone on the chest, about a handspan distance from the mouth to give it a clear natural sound.

Rode Toner TC-777 USB Microphone is one of the best budget microphones available on the market. It is currently rated as the number one microphone on Amazon.

Weight

The microphone is quite light in weight at about 0.76 Pounds

Setup

To use the microphone, simply unfold and adjust the trifold stand, fix and adjust the position of the pop filter and your microphone is ready to be used.

Design

This microphone has a cardioid pickup pattern that captures the clear, smooth, and crisp sound in front of the microphone and suppresses unwanted background noise.

It comes with a five (5) feet long USB cable with a small cable tie included for proper cable management.

Has a built-in gooseneck attaching and maneuvering the pop filter.

Pros

  • Comes with a pop filter
  • Comes with an attached tripod
  • Plug ‘n play
  • Very affordable
  • Great audio quality

Cons

  • USB cable is permanently attached
  • The build is mostly plastic

To sum it up, the Rode Toner TC-777 USB Microphone produces some of the best quality audio when recording videos. This makes it a great microphone for voiceovers.

Tip:

Note that this is a side-address microphone. This means you don’t talk into the top of the microphone as it doesn’t have a very good pickup in that area.

The condenser is located at the front side where the logo is visible which is the ideal place to talk when recording.

It is advisable to remain fairly close to the microphone when recording to capture rich quality sounds.

Another great choice when choosing a microphone for creating online courses is the Rode SmartLav+ Omnidirectional Lavalier Microphone.

Like most lavalier microphones, it is easy to set up and can be connected directly to your smartphone, camera, or laptop.

Like the PowerDeWise Lavalier Microphone, it is great for recording some distance from your video recording device.

This makes it perfect for recording talking head videos.

Weight

Like most lavalier microphones, the Rode SmartLav+ Omnidirectional Lavalier Microphone is small in size.

Setup

The Rode SmartLav+ Omnidirectional Lavalier Microphone is easy to set up. Simply connect the 3.5-millimeter jack to your phone or camera to start using.

Design

This microphone has been designed to be small in size to fit perfectly on any clothing. There are no configurations on the device.

It also comes with a small strap to keep things nice and tidy when not in use and also a small pouch for storing the microphone.

Pros

  • Affordable
  • Great audio quality
  • Comes with easy to use clip-on
  • Comes with a foam windscreen
  • Picks sound from all directions around the microphone

Cons

  • Requires the rode recording app
  • May not be compatible with some Android devices

When creating talking head videos, it is advisable to use a lavalier microphone as these are some of the finest microphones for producing online courses

Tip:

Like most lavalier microphones, it is advisable to position the microphone on the chest, about a handspan distance from the mouth to give it a clear natural sound.

This microphone is one of the most popular microphones on the market. It comes with a USB cable is very easy to install.

It also comes with a tripod to mount the microphone.

Weight

The microphone is very light in weight at about 0.1 Grams

Setup

The Blue Snowball iCE is easy to install. Simply plug in your USB cable and then the microphone is ready to be used.

Design

The snowball is designed to take in audio coming through the front while negating most of the audio coming in through the back and sides.

This makes it one of the best cardioid microphones on the market within its price range.

Out of the box, the Blue logo can be seen in front of the microphone. A small light can also be seen at the top of the logo.

It comes in black and white colors and is spherical. It requires no switch and turns on once it is attached to your computer.

To reduce popping sounds, investing in a Blue Snowball Pop Filter will go a long way to increasing the quality of your videos.

Pros

  • Easy to set up
  • Affordable
  • Also works on PS4
  • Great audio quality
  • Cardioid
  • Plug ‘n play

Cons

As you can see from the description, the Blue Snowball is one of the best microphones on the market, perfect for creating your online lessons.

Tip:

Make sure your voice is always within the green light. When the light turns yellow or red, this signifies that your voice may be too loud.

Distance between the mouth and the microphone should be about six (6) inches for the be quality result.

To get the best out of this distance, it is advisable to invest in a Blue Snowball Pop Filter to reduce the popping sounds that could be heard from directly speaking into the microphone.

An alternative solution is to rotate the microphone about 45 degrees to the left or right.

Conclusion

In conclusion, based on the type of content you will be creating, the options listed above will provide some of the best quality sounds for your video at affordable prices.

These options are some of the most highly used microphones for creating online courses as well as making online videos.

In conclusion, always remember that irrespective of whichever microphone you purchase, environmental factors should be considered and addressed to produce the best quality end result for your learners or target market.

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