Current recording/playback setup
- Samson Q2U cardiod XLR/USB Microphone ~ £90
- USB means no need for a mixer or XLR adapter thing.
- Seems to be the best price/quality balance for me.
- The cardiod effect is pretty good, greatly reducing input of noises from elsewhere, especially if you talk really close to it (which I don’t).
- Proel RSM180 Microphone stand with boom ~ £34
- Because standing desk, plus the Samson mic doesn’t isolate vibrations from the desk if it’s on a desk mount.
- AKORD Microphone Swivel Pop Filter ~ £5
- Because all the cool kids have one, and it was cheap. No idea if I really need it. Edit: yes I do, breathing on the mics and hard “P”s really do create a bass boom without it as the rush of air hits the mic.
- Some old philips bluetooth headphones connected with a real headphone cable to the line out on the back of the Samson mic. I only use this for recording to avoid feedback from speakers. It has a feedback of your own voice which is disconcerting and nice in equal measure. For conference calls zoom and teams seem to do a decent job of cutting out the feedback, and I use mute a lot anyway so I don’t bother with the headphones.
- The tiny and highly capable Nobsound G3 2 Channel Bluetooth 5.0 Power Amplifier 100W hifi amp, driving a pair of bookshelf Kefs for editing, music and conference calls.
- Wharfedale Diamond SW150 Subwoofer hiding at the back, because frequencies below 100Hz are important too.
- WBTY Gooseneck Mount Stand
- Neewer USB lights x2 ~ £51 (didn’t come with usb power units, bring your own, requires high-current capability)
- OBS (Open Broadcaster Software)for live streaming + recording video+audio
- restream.io for streaming to multiple platforms
- Audacity for editing (I streamed a record+edit session if you’re interested)
- Dell XPS15 (sometimes an XPS13)
- Linux mint cinnamon
- Standing desk (no chair these days, previously kneely chairs and exercise balls).
- Nextstand k2 Folding laptop stand (amazing bit of kit, very portable too)
- Microsoft sidewinder X4 keyboard
- Logitech M570 trackball - I find the continuous thumb+finger grip needed for a mouse uncomfortable.
- Recently upgraded to Logitech MX Ergo
- HP M477fdw laserjet + sheet feed scanner because life’s too short for manually scanning one page at a time. Configured to automatically send scans to server over smb, then sync’d to all devices with syncthing. Win.
I started with a Jabra Evolve 65 wireless headset (~£130 because covid prices) but that heavily processes voice so while it’s great for conference calls it’s not good for anything beyond your third episode as people will unsubscribe just for the sound quality. Still use them for on the go conference calls and phone calls, and occasionally music (though my phone’s bluetooth is currently borked).
I tried a Blue Microphones Snowball USB Microphone (~£75) next, but that picks up everything even in it’s alleged cardioid mode.
Out of my price range
Some of my friends who take it more seriously splashed out on a Shure SM7B XLR Mic at a mere £389, and you have to by an XLR mixer to run it. I have to say they sound lurvely, and when they knock it you hardly hear it so it’s got excellent vibration isolation built in.