Getting into streaming video games online, whether it be through Twitch or otherwise, is not as easy as you think. Hell, I have been trying to get into a rythm and have my streams go smoothly for going on two years now and it still seems like something always goes wrong. There are a lot of factors that go into it, especially when it comes to the equipment. PC gamers tend to need a higher end rig to stream at high qualities with multiple attachments, while streaming directly through your PS4 or Xbox One is usually a lot easier but does not offer the same quality potential as streaming through a PC offers. I am somewhere in between, streaming often through my laptop (Xbox through El Gato, via OBS) as well as directly through the Twitch app offered on Xbox One. As far as equipment on Xbox One goes, you are typically limited to your Kinect as a camera or mic, or using a mic directly through your headset. If you bounce back and forth like I do, but want a quality mic that is easy to use on both platforms, Turtle Beach is here to make your streams easier and also up the quality.
When I stumbled across the new Turtle Beach Stream Mic, I knew it was going to be a good fit. Between my real job and managing the site, I just do not always have time to set up a stream through my laptop. This versatile mic allows me to use it directly on my Xbox One, for streaming or game chat, and easily unplug it and switch over to my pc with no problems. It also is a great substitute for the Kinect or standard game mics, which can often be too quiet or too sensitive in many cases. Its easy to set up, with one option being for Xbox use, and the other working with both PS4 and PC. Being a mic and all, there are a few key features that are important here; sound quality, versatility, and design. While each may be related to each other in certain cases, I will do my best to break them down.
Sound Quality: The sound quality on the mic is touted as “professional grade”, and that holds true in my opinion. My recordings and streams with the mic were clear and crisp, and it really made it easy to understand me. There is much less background noise then I was accustomed to with other set ups. There is still background noise present, which will always be the case in noisy environments like the apartment complex I call home, but it is much less distracting and invasive than it would be on lower grade, high sensitivity mics. It is really easy to stream with a friend or two as well, as the distinct voices are pulled through and do not muddle together. I never heard any popping or crackles with loud laughter or anything like that, and it never seemed to pull the tv sets volume into the stream which is always a plus. When it comes to quality, Turtle Beach is rarely a let down, and the most certainly made a quality mic here.
Versatility: This is where the Turtle Beach Stream Mic has a huge upper-hand on the majority of the market. The mic comes standard with multiple polar patterns including cardioid, super cardioid, and omnidirectional. These basically mean which direction the mic pulls sound in from. The cool thing here is that the light around the mute button has multiple colors to let you know what setting you are on, but we will get more into that during the Design portion. But these patterns come in handy for different set ups. In a noisy room, you can opt for options that either reduce the noise behind the mic, or accept it all in case you are doing a sort of group friendly event. There is an option for standard streaming, and even one that gives you feedback from the front and back fit perfectly for interviews. In addition to all that, you can hook up your headphones directly to the mic for latency free sound from the current game you are playing, giving you the extra professional touch and reducing the need for your tvs sound output. The mic is also easily mountable to a variety of booms in case that works for your ideal set up. The lengthy cord makes streaming across the room or manuevering a breeze.
This Video Features the Turtle Beach Stream mic, with three different speakers in an open space. (Graphic Content and Language may not be suitable for everyone)
Design: Once you take the mic out of the box, you will see before you a very professional looking piece of equipment. The mic itself is much lighter than it appears, but is supported by a heavy metal base. Once the pieces meet, the look comes together perfectly. The mic looks and feels professional, and works that way too. There are adjustable knobs on either side that allow for quick adjustments of the angle, while the slip resistant base helps keep it in place. The previously mentioned light on the mic glows one of five colors to let you know what mode it is currently in. Green, blue, purple, and orange represent the different polar patterns, while red keeps the mic in mute. It's simple but elegant, and the lights give the mic that extra pizazz. It's just an awesome piece of equipment.
The Turtle Beach Stream Mic is a great tool for any streamer, especially one that streams from various platforms. Versatility is its strong suit, and its ease of use and professional qualities back it up even further. At $100, it's still a pretty penny, but more affordable than many other similarly branded mics on the market. Turtle Beach brings an excellent mic to the table, one fit for both up and coming as well as seasoned streamers. Definitely keep this one on your radar next time you consider upgrading your set up.
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Check out this product and more at https://shop.turtlebeach.com/us/
*Note: The Mic was provided by Turtle Beach for the purposes of the review
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