AmazonBasics Dynamic Vocal Microphone Review / Test

Today we're looking at an odd microphone, coming from Amazon, The AmazonBasics Dynamic Vocal Microphone, Super Cardioid.

For this review, I have the mic connected directly to the Focusrite Scarlett 18i20 (2nd Gen), with the input gain set at approximately 3:00. I have done no post processing on the audio, it is all raw, but the audio was slightly boosted in final cut pro X to simply make the audio easier to listen to.

If you are interested in this microphone, it will set you back around $70 on Amazon

What's In the Box

  1. Microphone

  2. Mic Clip (5/8” threading and no adapter)

  3. ~20 foot XLR to 1/4” cable

  4. Documentation

Specifications

  1. Frequency Response: 50Hz - 16kHz

  2. Polar Pattern: Super Cardioid

  3. Sensitivity: ~ -52dB

  4. Impedance: 520-ohms

Performance / Features

The build quality of this microphone is decent. It has an all metal body, and a metal mesh grill with a little bit of foam inside to help reduce plosives/wind noise. One the side you’ll find an on/off switch, and it does not feel sturdy. While I was testing it, the switch cover actually fell off. Lastly, on the bottom you will find an XLR port.

The frequency response is listed as 50Hz - 16kHz. No graph was provided, but you can hear a significant boost in the upper frequencies, which leads to a top heavy sound. When the proximity effect is engaged you end up with a very scooped sound which for voice and acoustic instruments does not sound too pleasing. For metal electric guitar it is tolerable.

The polar pattern of this mic is super cardioid. It does a decent job rejecting sound from the side, and surprisingly it does a good enough job from the rear as well. This leads me to believe that it is not actually a super-cardioid microphone as it did not appear to have a lobe of sensitivity at 180-degrees.

The overall performance of this mic is mediocre at best. The microphone has a significant boost in the upper frequencies which leads to a top heavy sound, as well as sibilance and harshness issues. When you’re close micing an instrument, or speaking into the mic closely, you end up having a scooped mid sound which is unpleasant except on the electric guitar for metal sounds. The polar pattern did not seem to be a super cardioid polar pattern, but it did do a respectable job at background noise rejection. The mic also did a decent job at handling noise rejection. Where the microphone really suffered was with plosive rejections.

Pros

  • -52dB sensitivity is a pretty healthy output for a dynamic microphone

  • Pretty good at background noise rejection

  • Decent handling noise rejection

Cons

  • Awful plosive rejection

  • Questionable build quality (as switch fell off, right out of the box)

  • For a mic that is likely a mass produced and rebranded mic for Amazon, I think it’s a bit expensive.

Conclusion

I found this microphone to be rather lackluster. For $70, I wasn’t expecting much, and I suppose it’s find for that money, but I think there are microphones at or below the $70 price tag that perform better (Samson Q2u, Audio Technica ATR2100USB, AT2005USB, Shure SM48).

If you have any additional questions about this microphone, leave them on the youtube video, and I will try to reply ASAP. 

Buy the AmazonBasics Dynamic Mic (Amazon Affiliate)
Global: https://geni.us/ambasdvm

Buy the Focusrite 2i2 (3rd Gen) (Amazon Affiliate) - Same Performance as 18i20
Global: https://geni.us/2i32rd