Microphone question

I have no knowledge in the field of voice. However, I’d like to to record a voice project. I want to read poetry and record it using Audacity 2.0.5 XP. I bought a simple (I thought) Sony Microphone: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/203515-REG/Sony_FV620_FV_620_Cardioid_Handheld.html
When I began to test it, I registered a very low voice. I tried to find if there is something wrong with the mic. I learned that those types of MICs should go through another device before connecting to the PC. I think an amplifier or something.
I need to know what device I shall buy for amplifying the voice. Please tell me about something simple and inexpensive. My need is only to record my voice with good quality and nothing else. I cannot define “inexpensive” because I do not know the price range. So, please me give info about something decent with reasonable price.

Thanks in advance,

For basic voice recording, reasonable results can often be achieved with an inexpensive (around $20 US) USB desktop microphone.
One Audacity user posted a very reasonable recording using one of these:

The advantage of a USB microphone is that it bypasses the on-board sound card, (which in most PCs are pretty low quality).
If you eventually want to do more advanced recording then you will probably need something better, but something like this should be good enough to get started.

When using a USB microphone, plug in the mic and wait for Windows to detect and “install” it, then open Audacity, Check in the device toolbar that the recording input is set to the USB mic.
If you find that you lose audio playback when the USB mic is connected (very common) the solution is here: http://manual.audacityteam.org/o/man/faq_playback.html#usb

For around $100 USD you can get a “studio style” or “podcast” USB microphone ([u]examples[/u]). With one of those, you can get nearly pro studio quality (assuming you have a reasonably quiet “studio” with good acoustics, and a “professional performance” to record :wink: ).

I learned that those types of MICs should go through another device before connecting to the PC. I think an amplifier or something.

Right! I didn’t find the specs for that mic, but virtually all “studio” or “performance” microphones are low-impedance balanced with XLR connectors. It’s the wrong interface for a regular consumer soundcard (high impedance unbalanced). And, the mic peramp built into a consumer soundcard is generally low quality. Studio condenser mics usually require 48V phantom power from the mixer, preamp, or interface. (Your dynamic mic does not require power.)

You can get an audio interface like [u]this[/u] or [u]this[/u]. It generally costs more, but the advantages to a regular mic and separate interface are that you can get an interface that can records several microphones at once (for stereo or multi-tracking) and you’ll have a microhone that you can use with a mixer or PA system.

If you have a desktop computer (with a line-input on the soundard), the line-input is often good quality and you have another option of using a small mixer with XLR mic inputs. You don’t have to use it as a “mixer”… You can use it with one mic as a microphone preamp. (A small mixer is generally cheaper than a separate preamp.)

That would be me.


I own one of these and I like it very much. You would be hard pressed to beat it for sound quality, room echo rejection and simplicity. It may not be for sale any more. I haven’t seen it in a while. — Mostly eBay and some Amazon.

“All I want to do is record my voice.” There is nothing simple about recording your voice well. People who do conferencing and tricks with highly advanced cellphones get lulled into thinking this is a snap. It’s not.

I think it’s still the case that the longest posting in Audacity Forum history was in response to the question, “How do I record my classical acoustic guitar?”


Thanks for your reply. In fact, I have had several of those microphones and problems with that easy solution made me to get a more serious mic.

Thanks for your reply. You have answered my question exactly. Sorry that I did not mention, yes, I do have a desktop computer so, a simple mixer will work, I hope.

It can be found at Amazon.com