Type to search

The Best Location for Microphone PC


Whether you’re gaming, streaming, or setting up your workstation, a microphone is an essential item to have if you want your audio quality in recordings and video calls to sound great. While your PC or laptop may already have an internal microphone, we all know that the sound quality can be better. For this reason, plenty of people make use of an external microphone.

When using an external microphone, the mic placement is incredibly important. Placing this too close or too far from where it needs to be can result in a distorted or muffled sound, which can ruin your recording. Not to mention, it can also distract viewers or participants in a video call leading them to tune you out entirely — and we wouldn’t want that!

Not to worry, we have listed down some tips on the best location for your microphone PC so you can have quality sound recordings every time.

Best Location for Each Microphone PC Type

While there are plenty of microphone types out there, the three most commonly used mics for PC are headsets, USB mics, and XLR mics. Considering your specific requirements and budget to figure out what the best type of PC microphone is for you.

Headset Microphones

The Best Location for Microphone PC

A headset microphone is the preferred recording device of gamers. Since these are hands-free microphones, headset users have ample mobility and can keep turning their heads without worrying if their voice will get picked up by the mic. There are also headset microphones designed to be compatible with other consoles such as an Xbox or PS.

If you plan on or are currently using a headset as a PC microphone, then here are some tips to follow to best position it.

  1. To avoid any wind noise from getting picked up, place the side of the microphone element to the side of your mouth.
  2. Give the microphone a distance of at least 1-3 inches away from your mouth and make sure it is not touching any part of your face.
  3. Check if the front of the microphone is facing or pointed toward your mouth. A unidirectional headset microphone will mean that it can only capture sound from one side.
  4. As an added tip, make sure that the microphone is away from any possible wind sources such as the wind coming from a fan or air conditioner. Otherwise, wind noise may be picked up.

USB Microphones

A USB microphone is often a preferred PC mic because of its plug-and-play easy setup. It’s also highly portable and convenient because of how compatible it can be with laptops, PCs, desktops, and even phones.

While they don’t often get a good track record for superb sound quality, they will still get the job done for recording music, podcasts, gaming, and video conference calls.

Although there are high-end USB microphones that will definitely give you professional-quality audio, you will still need to put in a bit of work in the placement of these plug-and-play mics to make them sound their best.

  1. As in most cases, a USB mic will often come with a desktop stand. If your mic doesn’t have one, then we suggest that you invest in such an accessory to avoid any desk vibrations from getting picked up in your recording. Going back, your USB mic’s desktop stand should be positioned 6-12 inches away from your face or the sound source.
  2. Angle the USB microphone slightly upwards to prevent any plosives from getting picked up.
  3. If you have an omnidirectional USB microphone, then be cautious of all possible sound sources around it. An omnidirectional microphone would mean that it can pick up sounds from all sources and sides. Only place this type of USB mic near the sound source you would want it to solely capture or focus on.
  4. Place the USB microphone far from any appliances, open windows, and too near the speakers to avoid any background noise and unwanted ambient sounds.

XLR Microphones

If you want to have a more professional PC microphone, then opt for an XLR mic. The setup may require more effort from your end, but the resulting sound is definitely worth it.

While an XLR mic as is can offer broadcast-quality audio, you should still know how to best position it for the best results. Often, when using an XLR mic, you will need to use a microphone or boom arm. With that said, the tips below are intended for XLR mics with a boom arm.

  1. Avoid obstructing your view by placing the boom arm on either side of your desk. This way, you or your viewers can have a clear field of vision.
  2. Raise the boom arm or the mic a bit higher to prevent it from picking up any desk vibrations, mouse clicks, and keyboard clacks.
  3. To make your voice sound fuller and louder, you can keep a distance of 6 to 12 inches between your mouth and the mic. Positioning it too close will result in a muddy and boomy sound.

Final Note

No matter the microphone you are using, knowing how to properly position and place them from your PC can assure you of better sound quality. Of course, if you want to further upgrade and improve the sound quality of your mic and recordings, then you can also consider using microphone accessories.

Ash Burnett

Hailing from Chicago, IL - Ash made his break into journalism at the age of 23 writing music reviews for a local website. Now in his late 30's and after being pulled closer towards the technical side of the music and live gig industry, he founded Shout4Music to write thorough microphone reviews.

  • 1