The Audio-Technica ATR2100-USB is a great entry-level podcast microphone that will give you professional quality sound.
The best feature about this microphone (besides the sound quality) is that it has the both USB and XLR outputs so you can plug directly into your computer (via USB) or plug into a mixer (via XLR).
This is perfect for the beginner or intermediate podcaster.
You don’t need to get a ton of gear all at once and as your skill level or needs increase, it’s easy to add a mixer without having to get a brand new mic and shock mount.
- Cardioid Dynamic
- Only picks up sound from the front
- Reduces background noise
- USB & XLR outputs
- Comes with both USB & XLR cables
- You can use both outputs at the same time
- Headphone output jack with level control
- Handheld – and comes with a desk stand
- Built in analog-to-digital converter (for USB)
Here’s a picture of the accessories and cables it comes with:
At the time of this writing, it has over 800 reviews with an average 4 1/2 stars on Amazon is under $70. I’ve heard from multiple people that the sound quality is nearly equivalent to microphones 3 or 4 times the price (like the Heil PR-40). Or said another way, is the PR-40 five times as good as the ATR2100? Check out this audio comparison of between the ATR2100 and PR-40.
ATR2100 Shock Mount
It can be difficult to find the correct shock mount for the ATR2100. Certain listings on Amazon claim they are built for this mic, but that’s not true. For me, the top listing when searching for “ATR2100 shock mount” was a shock mount from Audio-Technica (the same brand that makes the microphone) but it doesn’t actually fit this mic. It’s too narrow (or the mic is too wide) – don’t get that one.
Instead, you’ll want to get On Stage MY-420 Shock Mount. It attaches with a standard 5/8″-27 thread and adjusts to different angles. It will also fit the Audio-Technica AT2005USB microphone.
Getting a shock mount will greatly increase your sound quality and reduce unwanted sounds, especially from typing, clicking the mouse or hitting your desk. You’ll need to attach it to a boom arm or microphone desk stand (it won’t work with the desk stand included with the ATR2100).