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Best Mic For Recording Rap Vocals: 11 Dope Rap Mics For Pro MCs Only!! (2022 Edition)

What microphones do rappers use? Here's the best rap mic that MCs can cop...

While a rapper wants a lot (cars, clothes, girls in bikinis etc.), tracking down the best mic for recording rap vocals should be their top priority. Why?

Well, let’s just say that Hip Hop is now very much the ‘in’ thing. So much so that to actually stand out and have a chance of becoming a major rap-star, you first have to sound the part. Gone are the days of crackly mixtapes recorded from someone’s basement. After all, this is the 21st century, so even the worst rap microphones can no doubt present you with a clearer sound. However that’s not to say that choosing the best microphone for rap isn’t important. It most certainly is, especially if you are (or aspire to be) a pro MC!

With SO many MCs now stepping up to the mic, your sound is one of the few things that you can use to distinguish yourself from the pack. In other words, grab the attention of both listeners & music labels. So to ‘cheap out’ on a rap microphone would be a bit of a schoolboy error. And yet, it’s not like tracking one down is easy as 1-2-3.

The more rappers step up to the mic, the more companies ‘conveniently’ decide to manufacture their own vocal mic. Saying that though, this sudden surge has caused prices to drop. So you can now pick up a HQ rap mic for significantly less than your monthly pay packet!! Only trouble is, go mic shopping and you’ll be spoiled for choice. So to help you uncover the best mic for recording rap vocals, we’ve reviewed 11 of our top picks to help you narrow down your options.

Hunting for the best mic for recording rap vocals, but not sure where to start? Or just curious what rap microphones are (allegedly) used by the likes of Drake, Lil Wayne & Tyler The Creator? Use the menu below to track down all the answers you need in 1 click…

The best rap microphones @ a glance…

13 of the best mics for recording rap vocals in 2022…

Although on the face of it, finding the best mic for recording rap vocals seems pretty simple, it’s actually quite a task. That’s because a rap microphone has to deal with a lot. Not only does it have to be able to record your fast-paced delivery in detail, but it also has to diffuse plosives like a boss! Exactly why the best microphone for rap may not be what you expect.

While certain mics do work exceedingly well for pop stars and voiceover artists, whether they work for rappers or not is another story. So without further ado, here’s our rundown of the 11 best mics for recording rap vocals…

Condenser mics for recording bars in the booth (+ 1 exception)

1: Rode NT2-A studio mic

 The rode NT2-A is a classy microphone equipped with everything you are looking for in a mic, making it a sure shot choice for you. RØDE NT2-A Studio Pack has a large-diaphragm condenser microphone with three pickup features, including a cardioid, omnidirectional, and even a figure 8, thus providing excellent range and accessibility.

 Alongside that, RØDE NT2-A Studio Pack also comes with great build quality. This means that when you hold the mic, its renowned quality is represented in its weight and solidity, thus making this durable. Not only this, but it also has a sleek silver exterior with a sleek appearance, fulfilling all your aesthetics aptly.

Moving on, a high-pass filter switch allows for 40Hz and even 80 HZ. All in all, this is a great mic to invest in if you are dealing with several ranges or voices since it can manage almost anything and enhance their frequencies without ruining its quality, consequently presenting it great for whatever instrument you want to use.  

2: CAD Audio E300S condenser microphone

 One of the most exquisite mics produced by CAD is the E300S since it offers the best performance. This means that not only can it be used behind doors in a studio to record music, but you can effectively use it in a live setting to play for a crowd.

 An amazing feature of the CAD AUDIO E300S Condenser Microphone is its gold vapor deposited multi-pattern which ensures exceptional performance and accuracy. To further elaborate, the multi-pattern diaphragm capsule includes a cardioid pattern, Omni pattern, and even a figure-of-eight pattern.

The capsule is hand-dampened for consistent response. In addition, you get a stage filter to improve stability with a hard-shell composite carrying case, delivering this as one of the most advanced vocal mics out there that’s perfect for professionals.

3: Shure SM7B broadcast quality rap mic (the exception)

Shure’s collection of mics is something it prides itself on. You can find it all over music studios, sound stages, and even live music venues. With that much popularity, their SM7B Dynamic microphone is one of the finest mics you can turn to, especially for podcasting purposes.

Shure SM7B Vocal Dynamic Microphone delivers ideal sound in whatever environment it is kept in since it works impressively for sound delivered at any level of every voice, making it essentially better. Another thing that adds to Shure SM7B Vocal Dynamic Microphone’s glory is its rugged construction with a certain aesthetical appeal, which presents carrying and using it better.

The Shure SM7B Vocal Dynamic Microphone has three frequency response settings: presence boost, flat, and bass roll-off, which, when added with the detachable windscreen, make this microphone stand out. Although some might believe that Shure SM7B Vocal Dynamic Microphone does not have a pop filter like other mics, however, its windscreen is enough to deal with the plosives in the best manner possible.

Shure SM7B Vocal Dynamic Microphone comes with a switch cover plate and shock isolation, making it indifferent to any physical vibration and allowing it to be mounted at any desk without any hassle. With all these features, we can surely overlook the fact that its price point is high.

4: Aston Microphones Spirit studio microphone

This microphone has easily become one of the best products in the market, owing to many reasons. The Aston stealth is a microphone with an active preamp and independent voicings that you can easily switch. Also, it comes fitted with four distinct voicing options and limiting distortion, making it great for almost everybody.

It has high flexibility because it can act as both a condenser and a dynamic microphone, as seen with its switching between active/passive modes proving its great versatility. In addition, the shock mount it comes fitted with prevents rumble.

It can auto-detect power to engage active mode, which is a unique feature and makes this condenser one of the best inline.

5: Blue Baby Bottle SL vocal rap mic

 The predecessor of this Blue Baby Bottle is ‘the bottle,’ and even though that might be good, the new Baby Bottle is a much more focused sound with an even better price point.

The diaphragm of the Blue Baby Bottle SL XLR Condenser Microphone is hand-tuned, gold-sputtered, and brass plated, making this already a great buy. Alongside that, it also has top-notch circuitry with a 20 dB pad. A great feature of this device is its self-noise, which is extremely low, proving to be the finest compared to several others.

 Blue Baby Bottle SL XLR Condenser Microphone comes with a shock mount, which adds the cherry on top and makes this the perfect mic out there for guitars, drum overheads, and even pianos.

6: Shure SM27 recording mic for vocals

 Shure products have set the bar high for delivering excellent goods. This fact is further rooted in truth because of Shure SM27’s excellent exterior, which is made incredibly rugged with a side address and a microphone for the large diaphragm.

Shure SM27 has the feature to limit self-noise. In addition, it has a frequency response that is so amazing that it can pick up on even the slightest noises and offers great sound, even at higher volumes. Some might say that this microphone only offers one polar pattern, but what is exceptional is how it manages that polar pattern.

The cardioid polar pattern it comes with eliminates all kinds of sounds, which works great for any individual artist. With high output levels, three mesh layers acting as a pop filter, and a neutral frequency response, this microphone is a package to look out for.

7: AKG C414 XLII

More info coming soon!

8: Electro-Voice RE320

More info coming soon!

Dynamic mics for rapping onstage

 9: Sennheiser MD421 dynamic rap mic

This is one of those mics which is a must-have if you need to tolerate the higher sound pressure levels. It is safe to say that Sennheiser MD421 does the job surprisingly well. With great durability, this Sennheiser MD421 mic has an interior body made up of advanced circuitry elements.

If that is not good enough, Sennheiser MD421 also has an amazing sound quality which is probably the first reason to buy this device. Moreover, its beautiful build is another feature that adds to Sennheiser MD421’s charm, which can be seen through the refined steel basket and hardy enclosure.

The cardioid magnet field through which it picks up interruptions is also a unique trait that adds polarity, preventing feedback. In addition, Sennheiser MD421 comes with a frequency ranging from 30 Hertz to 17 Kilohertz. As a result, Sennheiser MD421 provides better focus with a clearer capture, making this one of the better options in the market for drums, amplifiers, and even heavy distortion because of Sennheiser MD421 ability not to be overly sensitive.

10: SE Electronics V7 dynamic rap mic

In this era where vintage products are in high demand, why should microphones be any behind? This is exactly the motivation behind choosing the V7 Dynamic vocal Microphone. It has those specific touches of a mid-20th century European mic but with great sound quality right on par with the 21st century.

 One of the great features of this mic that equips it with an open and crisp sound is its aluminum coil, which is custom-developed and ticks all the right boxes for great sound quality while also keeping it natural. Alongside that, V7 Dynamic vocal Microphone’s super-cardioid capsule is another excellent finish, which ensures sound isolation.

V7 Dynamic vocal Microphone comes with an integrated shock mount, which eradicates any distracting sounds and comes with an internal windscreen to get rid of unwanted air and allow you to use this mic without any hurdle.

As mentioned above, the internal characteristics of V7 Dynamic vocal Microphone are excellent, with features like a windshield, shock mount, and an aluminum coil. The external body is what you need. It comes with heavy-duty metal construction made from zinc. 

11: Shure SM58-LCE performance rap microphone

If you’re looking for a mic that is a whole package and serves all your needs without costing you a fortune, then this is just the thing for you. Not only is the Shure SM58-LCE Cardioid Dynamic Vocal Microphone highly durable, affordable, and reliable, but it also has everything a vocal microphone should have.

 Although many say that SM58 is 15 years old, we believe it still has all the characteristics to daze you. Starting from a durable and rugged construction made from metal and a removable grill, this mic ensures that you can use it for a long time without worrying. It also has a cardioid pickup pattern and a recording emphasis of midrange, i.e., picking up sounds that are either not too low or too high.

The cardioid pickup pattern also assures that the background noise is reduced exponentially, proving lesser focus on the mic’s placement because of the high quality of the microphone. In addition, Shure SM58-LCE Cardioid Dynamic Vocal Microphone has an internal shock mount, reducing the chance of being distracted by external noises and handling noises.

The stand adapter is a great touch making the Shure SM58 excellent for live performances. In addition, Shure SM58-LCE Cardioid Dynamic Vocal Microphoneworks effectively in louder noises and ensures distortion and noise rejection. With so many functions, Shure SM58-LCE fits the needs of a vocalist and podcaster, making this an optimal choice

Here’s the best cheap microphone for rapping…

12: Rode NT1-A recording microphone

 Often, people confuse having a good quality microphone with something pricey and while that might be the case in certain scenarios, rode manufacturers surely don’t believe this way. Instead, they make excellent products at highly reasonable prices, making them accessible all across the world. So, not surprisingly, the Rode NT1 proved to be the best microphone for recording vocals.

This is because it is a cardioid polar pattern condenser microphone, which means it picks up sound from all sides and rejects unwanted sound later. Rode NT1-A Cardioid Condenser Microphone is constructed from aluminium and is nickel-plated to protect against any corrosion while also being coated with a durable and scratch-resistant layer, ensuring this microphone’s high quality and long-lasting ability.

The performance of this microphone is phenomenal with a wide frequency response between 20hz – 20kHz and has a warm and natural frequency curve. Rode NT1-A Cardioid Condenser Microphone is extremely quiet and ensures no disturbance but will pick up any background noise. Thus it will probably be a good idea to record vocals in a silent space. Rode NT1-A Cardioid Condenser Microphone has a pop shield with a shock mount, ensuring no distractions and guaranteeing the best performance. 

Which mic is best for rapping in 2022? Our editor’s choice…

Putting a finger on the best microphone for rapping isn’t exactly straight forward. Because as you’ve probably gathered, how well suited a mic is to being a ‘rap microphone’ is hinged somewhat on your voice. Nevertheless, if we were recording a studio album, we’d say you could get away with both a dynamic or condenser microphone, providing you play your cards right.

By that we mean invest in the right microphone. So after much intense deliberation, we’ve managed to reach our verdict on both the best condenser mic for rapping, as well as the best dynamic mic too. So without further ado…

Latest Price!

When it comes to dynamic mic, few are as suited to studio recording as the Shure SM7B. And while this mic is popular amongst radio DJs for interviews & would work really well as a podcast mic, as a rap microphone it’s certainly no slouch either.

It’s the sensitivity of this mic that really sets it apart. At just -59db the SM7B is incredibly quiet, which makes it ideal for achieving a strong crisp vocal. Exactly what every rapper needs not just to stand out, but to be properly understood. And on the subject of clarity, the SM7B goes above and beyond in comparison to other dynamic mics, and even puts some condenser mics to shame too.

That built in air in-built air suspension system really does its job. Out of the all the mics on this list, the Shure arguably performs the best in terms of reducing interference and handling noise! And being a dynamic microphone, the amount of background noise it picks up is minimal anyway.

Then there’s the fact that the sound itself is flexible too. The low cut filter and the mid boost mean that virtually any rapper with any tone of voice, could get comfortable with this mic. It really is versatile. Couple this with the insanely good build quality and you do struggle to find fault. So much so that the Shure SM7B is (what we believe to be) the best dynamic microphone for recording rap vocals. However before you buy the SM7B, consider this…

Latest Price!

Now, we said our best mic for recording rap vocals wasn’t one you’d expect… and we weren’t lying. That’s because when it comes to all-round flexibility, no mic – not even the Rode NT2-A – can steal the crown from the CAD E300s. A condenser mic that isn’t really talked about that much, and yet we struggle to understan d why.

In terms of sound, we couldn’t really fault the CAD. Being a condenser mic, it’s far more tonal and detailed in comparison to a dynamic. Let’s just that the E300s doesn’t make your voice sound flat. Exactly what you need if you’re a rapper, especially if you’re one that also sings on the odd occasion. What’s more, the E300s also comes with a wealth of options for adjusting your polar pattern, tone of recording and so. In fact, we’d say it’s equally as flexible as the NT2-A in that respect. Not to mention that double layered mesh grill to fend off any pesky plosives.

And yet, this is a condenser mic that you can take virtually anywhere, as aside from phantom power, it can also be powered by 9V batteries! Our favourite perk of this mic, as it makes it ideal for a ‘pop up’ freestyle or just a vocal mic for use on location. But crucially, it manages to pack all this functionality into something that really does feel professional.

The build of the E300s is up there with the best too. This rap microphone has a really nice weight to it and the rubberised outer doesn’t just feel really comfortable, but also works super well on the go to prevent from any slippages. As far as microphones go, the E300s doesn’t cost all that much for what it is either. And that exactly is why we feel it’s the best condenser mic for recording rap vocals. The E300s performs like a A-lister, yet is very much the plucky underdog.

Enjoy what you’ve read and eager for more? Be sure to check out all our latest advice on Music Production, as well as our latest Music Studio Kit Reviews. We recently also published an article on the Best Cheap Condenser Mics + another on the Best Audio Interface, which may also be worth a read.

Or if you want to delve even further into our rap microphones review, be sure to dive into the FAQs below…

The lowdown on rap microphones, recording vocals & more

Rappers use a variety of microphones depending on the situation, hence why the best microphone for recording rap vocals can differ.

For performing on stage rappers use what’s known as a dynamic microphone. These are microphones with a relatively low sensitivity. In short, this means that they’re only really receptive if you speak directly into them. Exactly th etype of rap microphone you need if you’re spitting bars on stage. Reason? All your jeering fans don’t get picked up by your microphone, so for the most part, the recording remains clear. Most likely the reason you see rappers pressing mics like the Shure SM58 right up-to their mouth.

Although there are some exceptions of course. Dynamic broadcast mics like the Shure SM7B, can be significantly more sensitive and are actually favoured within the studio. In a live environment, an SM7B would probably work best as an interview mic, used as part of a sit down interview with a rapper after their performance.

Whereas, if a rapper’s in a studio, they’ll most likely switch their dynamic microphone for their vocal microphone. This being some form of condenser microphone. Reason being that condenser microphones are FAR more sensitive and will therefore pick up every crackle, lisp or tone in a rapper’s voice. These mics are the business for when it comes to recording songs, as the clearer the vocals, the easier life is for the producer. HQ sound is also essential if rappers want to have any hope of making the charts or New Music Friday on Spotify.

For recording rap, you can’t really go wrong with some sort of condenser microphone.

Yes, these rap mics are all slightly different & certain mics work better for certain rap voices, but overall a condenser mic would be a wise move. Unless you’re thinking of using a broadcast dynamic mic like the Shure SM7B, then dynamic mics are pretty much off the cards. Condensers run rings around dynamics when it comes to recording vocals for a track or EP.

If you don’t have a home studio setup, you may also benefit from investigating the Best Reflection Filters, as well as having a nosey into the Best Pop Shields too. Both inexpensive accessories that can really make a BIG difference to your sound!

Yes and no.

You see, while you do need a good rap microphone, spending 10s of thousands of £££ on one, isn’t going to suddenly turn an amateur into 50 Cent. The majority of rapping is actually in your delivery and flow, less so the quality of the microphone. Hence why the options above aren’t all high-priced monsters.

Yes, if you have an unlimited budget, there are Neumann, Sony and Telefunken mics that can perform slightly better, but for the amount of money you could pocket, we’d say you’d have to be a serious artist to buy one of these.

Want our advice? Buy a decent rap microphone like the ones above & spend the rest of your money on marketing and PR. Then one day you may actually be able to justify such a steep purchase.

While Lil Wayne has used a lot of mics in his career, there’s one brand of microphone that keeps cropping up.

CAD.

In fact, it’s said that a roster of CAD mics were chosen by Lil Wayne’s production manager, Maceo Price, for use on the rapper’s 2009 AM music tour. These included the likes of the CAD M179 Condenser mic, the CAD Trion 7000 ribbon microphone and even the CAD Audio Equitek condenser.

When recording vocals, unless you’re in a noisy setting, we’d always advise you to opt for a condenser microphone.

That’s because a condenser microphone is far more sensitive to sound than a mic that’s dynamic. Therefore, the same vocals through a condenser are going to be more crisp and clear. What’s more, with condenser mics, you don’t need get all up on the mic. Record using a condenser mics and you’ll have to rap roughly 6-12 inches away from the mic. All of which means that you can make use of a pop shield and eradicate any pesky plosives.

An easy way to make your producer’s life a lot easier and give you a more clear and crisp mix.

To record quality rap vocals at home, you need to be organised.

First need to first grab yourself the best rap microphone that you can afford. That’s because at the end of the day, it’s your mic that’s picking up your rhymes, so it’s undoubtably where you should focus the majority of your money.

Then of course, you have to consider some sort of sound insulation, or at least how to get rid of the sound of ‘the room’. In which case we’d suggest checking out the best sound insulation materials that you can get your hand on. If your production space has high ceilings or quite small (i.e. a haven for reverb), then chances are this will be a good idea.

And if you’ve got a condenser microphone, you also have to remember to get yourself an audio interface. For those who’re unsure, this is the device that provides a condenser mic with the phantom power it needs to operate. It’s also what amplifies your sound too, as condenser mics record audio at very low volume. So it too can dictate the quality of your audio. Audio interfaces with bad preamps tend to leave a hissing noise over your recording. In other words, counteract the abilities of a good mic & all your soundproofing. Hardly ideal.

So if you’re in the market for a condenser, but don’t have a great deal of budget for an AI, be sure to check out our guide to the Best Budget Audio Interface.

When looking for a rap mic, you need to be very specific about what you look for. After all, rapping demands a lot from a microphone, especially compared to singing. Therefore, the main things we’d advise you to keep an eye out for are…

  • Build quality – Need we say more: the better the build, (chances are) the better a mic’s recording capabilities. Plus, it’ll likely have a longer lifespan and therefore will be a better investment in the long run.
  • Low self noise – One feature that plagues any recordings done on a shabby mic is the amount of self noise you hear in the background. Much like you get with bad preamps in an audio interface, mics with high self noise give off a static hissing noise, which can very easily scar your recordings.
  • Plosive protection – Find a mic with in-built plosive protection and you’ve hit the jackpot. Compared to singing, rapping tends to be a LOT more forceful and therefore increase the likelihood of harsh plosive sounds. Not good. Hence why you often see rappers with their mouth set behind a pop filter. Find a mic with double layered grill or some sort of internal sound insulation system and you should be on the right track.

In terms of microphones, Tyler The Creator has been spotted with a fair few.

And from what we can tell, he seems a particular fan of the Shure SM57 – the previous version of the SM58 (above). In an interview with The Face magazine, he was even spotted holding the microphone as part of a photoshoot.

However, from what we can tell, when it comes to rap microphones for recording vocals, Tyler relies up on the Neumann TLM 103. A mic what’s said to be essentially the iconic Neumann U87 condensed into a smaller, more compact package. We like the Neumann TLM 103, however have slightly more love for its older cousin, the TLM 102.

A mic that performs much the same, yet comes in at close to half the price!

Not to say the Blue Yeti is a bad microphone for rapping, but we wouldn’t recommend it.

That’s because unlike the mics above, the Blue Yeti is a USB mic and not a condenser or dynamic mic. Both of which (currently) are the professional standard. Condenser mics offer you a far more detailed vocal and dynamic mics are well suited to performance. But as a studio mic, no USB mic (not even the Blue Yeti) makes the cut.

However, that’s not to say that it won’t be in the future. While the gap between condenser mics and USB mics is still pretty wide, it is getting slimmer. Pit the latest Blue Yeti mic up against the latest set of condensers and it does become apparent.

So while the best microphone for recording rap vocals may in the future be a USB mic, as of today, we’d say condenser mics especially are still your best bet.

While NBA YoungBoy has been associated with a fair few mics throughout his career, the main one we’ve seen him using is the Sony C-800G. A rap microphone that will set you back over £10,000!!

Now, as far as the best microphone for recording rap vocals goes, the Sony C-800G is certainly up there. However, we didn’t include it on our list for that exact reason. While the ultimate rap mic may cost over £10k, for us to label something as the best microphone for rapping, it has to also present good value. Something that at £10k, it’s pretty hard to justify, especially for up and coming rappers.

So while we haven’t had a chance to try the Sony, and in no way doubt its audio capabilities, we’re almost certain that compared to one of the rap mics above, the difference won’t be all that drastic. Ask us and we think NWA YoungBoy’s using that mic for the flex.