Just a few days before the CES frenzy started, I was looking for an external microphone and was quite unsure which one would work nicely with my HTC One. Online search did not give me any conclusive results, and I did not buy any. If you have ever felt the need of an external microphone for your smartphone, and have been in my situation, we’ve got it covered for you.
I got the opportunity to try out the iRig mic from IK Multimedia at CES 2014. Yes, they are the same guys who announced iRing – the accessory that gives you motion control over your music apps. Their iRig mic is the perfect solution to your external mic needs.
iRig Mic for iOS and Android Devices
IK Multimedia is known for their music/audio accessories and applications. The iRig mic is the first handheld microphone for iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch devices. The mic also works with Android smartphones and tablets.
Though designed as the idea mic for singers, vocalists and songwriters, it is also useful for taking interviews and recording instruments and podcasts. It has highly unidirectional condenser-electret microphone capsule that provides a quality recording from both close and distant sound sources.
The three-level gain switch makes it possible to adjust the mic for any sound condition from soft speaking to loud playing, thus giving you a clean recording in any sound setting.
The iRig Mic comes with a dual in/out mini-jack connector that allows you to listen to your recordings in real time by connecting the stereo mini-jack output to headphones and earbuds or speakers. The mini-jack connector is at the end of a 2m/6.5 ft. cable, giving you good flexibility and freedom of movement while the mic is connected to your smartphone.
A mic clamp is included in the package to enable you to set it up on any traditional mic stand. The rugged metal housing makes it durable and is perfect for someone who wants to take it along at all times.
The Music and Recording Apps
To help you get the best out of the mic, IK Multimedia offers free apps for whatever your need might be.
- VocaLive FREE – real time effects processor suite for the singer and vocalist
- AmpliTube FREE – for guitar players and songwriters
- iRig Recorder FREE – for quick audio recording and processing
You are not limited to the use of these apps only. You can plug the mic in and use it with any application that takes audio input, for example, the camera app.
A Compact Alternative – The iRig Mic Cast
In case the big portable microphone is not your thing, the iRing Mic Cast is the alternative for you. It’s a highly compact mic for your smartphones and tablets that you can carry in your pocket. It is more suited for a single source audio recording, making it ideal for interviews, meetings or podcasts.
It has a stereo mini-jack headphone output to enable real-time monitoring of the recordings. It also has a mini-switch with two different sensitivity settings to record close-up or distant sound sources.
I used the iRig Mic with my HTC One at CES and did the below recording at IK Multimedia booth. The host, Starr Ackerman, gave a detailed overview of the microphones and the iLoud Bluetooth speaker. Check out the voice quality of the recording.
An external microphone is not what a general user usually needs. For those who often work with audio/music, the iRig mic is an excellent choice to do recordings on the move. With flexible settings to adjust to any environment for proper, high-quality recording, it is the mic to have with you for getting good recordings at a moments notice. Add to that the apps that IK Multimeda offers, it’s a package that you almost cannot refuse. I’d recommend that you try it out!
The iRig Mic is priced at $59.99 while the iRig Mic Cast is $39.99