The P220 is a rugged large-diaphragm condenser (LDC) with a die-cast chassis in a matte black finish. The P420 is a favorite among studio owners due to its capability to handle a multitude of recording needs. The Rode NT-USB is a comprehensive purchase. It is equipped with all you need to, Best Condenser under $200: sE Electronics X1 S, Best USB Condenser under $200: HyperX QuadCast, Best Budget: Marantz Professional MPM1000, Best Pencil Condenser Mic under $200: Rode M5, Max SPL: 140 / 150 / 160 dB (0/10/20 dB pad), Low-cut filter: 80 / 160 Hz, 6 dB/Oct, switchable, Includes mic clip, mic stand thread adapter, Tap Mute sensor with LED status indicator, Gain control to control microphone sensitivity, 3.5mm stereo headphone jack for zero-latency monitoring, Direct mix control between mic input and source output, Maximum SPL: 110dB SPL (@ 1kHz, 1% THD into 1KΩ load), Includes a windscreen, shock mount and a XLR cable, Includes two WS5 windshields and two RM5 stand mounts. Remember that aforementioned thin membrane? The PRO 37 supports a fixed cardioid polar patterns with a 30 Hz to 15kHz frequency response and a max SPL of 141 db. A tightly-defined cardioid pattern ensures it records where you point it, and ignores everything else. The P420 can handle an SPL of 155dB, which is among the highest in the list. Besides that is has an SPL of 137 dB with most of the presence peak residing in the 3kHz to 10kHz range. Numerous mic placements yielding sub standard results? The 150dB SPL does a good job at balancing assertive tones from cranked up guitar amplifiers. MXL have noticed this and filled a gap in the market. The HyperX Quadcast looks futuristic. For under $200! It may not find favor among professionals and audiophiles, but beginners or audio enthusiasts will find this to be an excellent entry point for domestic and personal use. have a low sensitivity. It all sounds so simple! It has an edge over other mics in this list because it can double up as a location mic for live performances. With an instantly striking champagne finish and vintage design, the MXL condenser microphone is a few scratch marks from looking like it came from the 1970’s. Overall, the mic sounds full and transparent with reasonable lows. But thankfully, we are living in an era with developed technology where high quality microphones are financially reachable. The CO2 is sensitive and can pick up a lot of detail. This feature offers versatility to the microphone, facilitating a wide range of functions. Big difference! Whether it be the professional engineer at Abbey Road, or the bedroom musician, a condenser mic will be the go-to recording microphone. It delivers an impressive performance as a low-noise, high-functionality LDC for home studios, podcasts and personal recordings. Mind you, they are equally detailed and articulate as drum overheads as well. Here is your answer. You do, however, get a 12-month warranty that can be extended to ten years upon registering the product, which is more than what any other competitor is willing to offer. But how does it sound? Here, Audio-Technica AT2020 condenser microphone stands out as one of the best budget condenser microphones under $200 one can get. The AT2035 has a broad dynamic range that is capable of recording acoustic guitars, piano, vocals, and artist voiceovers. This low-noise LDC has a fixed cardioid pattern and a frequency response of 20Hz – 20kHz with a reasonably flat response. Podcasters also tend to choose condensers over dynamic because of the additional clarity and high output. The Marantz Professional MPM1000 is even cheaper! The high pass filter helps eliminate the annoying low-frequency noise that can burden your recordings and compensate for excessive bass lurking with close-mic techniques. The first pattern-altering device (widget) does a great job of modifying the presence in the 5-9 kHz range and the second one allows you to shift from cardioid to hyper-cardioid by placing it over the capsule. Overall, the mic is fairly low-noise but not enough to call it dead silent. The chassis construction is rock-solid but the compact shock mount does feel a little flimsy. Hopefully you now have some clarity on your search for the perfect microphone for you. Surprisingly, it performs well in handling most acoustic instruments, especially guitars, without yielding any brittle highs. This mic comes with the do-all attitude of the P420 and offers an equally versatile profile. If you’re looking for vocal microphones specifically, then you might be interested in checking out our guide: The Best Vocal Mics for Home Studio. This thin membrane is sensitive and therefore condensers can capture subtle and delicate sounds that dynamic mics (that use coils) cannot. The versatility of this microphone is to be admired. Even in our humbly-priced $200 segment, it manages to stare down mics that cost twice as much. The sE Electronics X1 S could be the only mic you need. Or recording instruments in a live scenario? The condenser microphone’s qualities, on the other hand, lend themselves better to studio recording. At just over $100, Samson offers the CO2 Pencil condenser set with a case, shock-mounted mic clips and gold plated XLR connectors. 10 Best USB Mixers for Home Studio -Analog & Digital, Top 7 Best MIDI Keyboards for Music Production , Computer Specs for Music Production – A Complete Guide, 9 Best Audio Interfaces Under $200 in 2020, 8 Best Studio Headphones for Home Recording, Tracking & Mixing, Top 10 Best Studio Monitors for Home Studio, 11 of the Best Free Plugins – VST, AU & AAX, 5 Best Recording Tips – Essentials for Beginners, High-quality shock mount and aluminum case, High gear to cost ratio: Great value for money, Responds well to vocals and acoustic instruments, +1 for the Project Studio Reflexion filter, Can do better in handling sibilance and highs, Not much to fault other than it isn’t as versatile as the AKG P420, High-quality engineering and construction, Handles wind and background noise well in field recordings, Besides the mediocre warmth in the lows, there isn’t much to critique, Can operate using batteries for up to 120 hours, Sturdy Construction and useful end-fire format, Admirable for recording acoustic instruments, Good for studio recordings AND live performance, Plastic widgets are handy but hard to handle, Highly function, versatile and responsive, SPL response works well with aggressive instruments, A must-have for any studio, at least as a backup mic, You may regret not getting two of these to use as a pair, Unarguably the best matched pair under $200, Will need to be upgraded in the long term. The matte-black M5 pair ships with WS5 foam windshields and RM5 stand mounts but no pouch or case. However this is not the extent of the X1 S capabilities. The fixed cardioid pattern responds when the source is positioned in front of the mic. But the entry-level market is over-crowded, conflicted and convoluted, presenting a daunting task for beginners and music enthusiasts to find the right condenser. It is an all-black pencil condenser that ships with a storage pouch, mic stand clamp, adapter and wind screen. Reinventing the way we podcast, game and record. It also has an 80Hz low-cut and the -10dB pad that work quite well. It is an ideal choice for small scale music projects or home-studio recording in combination with a good Music recording software (such as Nuendo). When investing in mics designed and engineered by the Australian based Rode, you can guarantee it will be of a certain quality. Unfortunately there are no shortcuts. This is a condenser mic worthy of your studio work and podcasting. It is also equipped with the usual -20dbB pad and high pass filter switch and rather modest 79dB of signal to noise ratio. Take a step into the future with the HyperX QuadCast. The large diaphragm X1 S condenser microphone parades the company’s continued commitment to quality. Choosing the best condenser microphone can feel like a daunting proposition. It feels sturdy, looks professional, and promises detailed sound representation. Audio engineers and producers will enjoy the neutral and well-defined sound with marginal background noise on offer at the modest price point. However, to be taken seriously you will need to aim for the professional quality only certain mics will offer. They have a frequency response of 30Hz to 20kHz and a hearty SPL of 134 dB, which is great for a stick mic of this sort. With the addition of a pop-filter, it compliments most vocal recordings with some warmth in the mids and more presence in the highs. The MPM-1000 condenser microphone delivers accurate and studio quality audio reproduction.