We believe the best home studio mic for vocals and acoustic guitar are dynamic and condenser microphones. We suggest you start with a dynamic microphone such as the Shure SM58, because they’re versatile, reliable and good all-around mics. They can be used in almost any setting, can withstand a lot of rough treatment on the road, don’t require phantom power, and have plenty of low-end response to capture acoustic guitars that have low action or hollow bodies. However, we understand that not everyone wants to lug around an SM58 at all times. That’s why we created our list of the best microphones for vocals and acoustic guitar as well as our guide on how to pick a microphone for your purposes
The best mic for recording acoustic guitar and vocals is perhaps the most recognized microphone in the recording world. Its versatility, durability and price make it ideal for both live and recording use. It has been used on countless hit records over the years and is a staple of every musician or engineer’s mic collection. Its cardioid polar pattern is also highly versatile and isolates the source sound for reduced noise when recording vocals or instruments in close proximity to other sound sources
List of the Best Home Studio Mic For Vocals And Acoustic Guitar
The Best Home Studio Microphone For Vocals, Acoustic Guitar and Other Acoustic Instruments. The mic is designed to be compact and unobtrusive while still providing great sound quality. It is perfectly suited for rehearsals and recording the beautiful acoustic sounds of the human voice, guitar or any other instruments. This is a very affordable all-purpose condenser microphone, best suited for home recording studios, music rehearsal rooms and churches.
1. Shure SM81
As one of the most famous, and widely-used mics of its kind…
The Shure SM81 has been an industry standard for decades…
And has been used on countless hit-albums for acoustic guitar, hi-hats, and many other instruments.
One reason this Shure mic stands out so much is:
Despite its cardioid pattern, it shows an unusually uniform frequency response from the sides, meaning its off-axis coloration is minimal.
For acoustic guitar especially, its 3-position bass roll-off offers a simple way to compensate for the natural proximity effect from close-miking.
2. AKG Perception 170
Normally, when you start looking at condenser mics in the sub-$100 range…
It’s natural to be suspicious of quality…since most of them are crap.
But there are exceptions, and the AKG Perception 170 is a great example.
The countless positive reviews of this mic confirm that it’s every-bit-as-good as AKG claims…
And it quite possibly has more satisfied users than any other mic on this list.
3. Shure KSM141
Among the must-have tools for stereo recording…
Few are as essential as the omnidirectional small diagram condenser.
The problem is…most “true omni’s” are high-end reference microphones, costing several-grand-a-piece.
In the lower price ranges, what you more often find is a hybrid mic that has 2 interchangeable omni/cardioid capsules for a single body.
But the common complaint with this design is…those capsules can be easily broken or misplaced.
The Shure KSM141 on the other hand, uses a much smarter design, that switches polar patterns with a simple rotating collar on the neck.
4. Rode NT2A
Now that we’ve covered the small diaphragm options…
Next let’s look at the large ones.
For acoustic guitar recording…
A multi-pattern large diaphragm condenser is great because it works for so many jobs, including:
- A/B (omni pair)
- X/Y (cardioid pair)
- ORTF (cardioid pair)
- Mid for M/S (cardioid single)
- Side for M/S (figure-8 single)
- Blumlein (figure-8 pair)
5. Studio Projects B3
While it may not be nearly as famous as the NT2A…
The Studio Projects B3 has the edge in the one key department that so many of us care about: Price.
While it offers all the same standard features of the NT2A, it costs less-than-half as much.
So if what you need is a reliable, yet super-cheap option for a multi-pattern condenser mic…
There’s really no other mic that even comes close to the B3.
6. Rode NT4
Often times, beginners AVOID the use of stereo recording…
Because they fear the “apparent” hassles of setting up and positioning multiple mics.
And while its really not that hard…the unfamiliar territory still scares some people off.
If you’re one of those people, here’s a mic I know you’ll love:
The Rode NT4.
Known as a “stereo microphone” the NT4 combines two mic capsules into a single body…making the entire task of stereo recording seem much less intimidating.
While it is slightly over our $500 price cap…it’s such a great option for beginners, I snuck it on the list anyway.
And since the NT4 is technically two-mics-in-one, its still cheaper than buying a matched-pair in the same price range.