Apple Dictation MicrophonesConsidering the purchase of a high-quality microphone for accurate Mac OSX speech recognition, Dragon Dictate, Siri, or voice control needs? Here we feature a few select external USB microphones for Mac users wanting a far better computer microphone than the tiny one that may be built into their MacBook or iMac computer or an Apple Cinema Display.
Optimized For Mac Speech Uses
Mini Clip-On Speech Recognition Mic
USB Lavalier Condenser Microphone
USB Desktop Mics For Mac DictationWe find USB connected microphones to be the most reliable, hassle-free and straightforward way to deliver highly accurate voice interpretation for speech recognition on MacOS. They're also great for upping the quality of your online chat and Skype sessions, Podcast recording, voice-over work, and all your other vocal capture needs.
Onboard Active LED and Mute Button
USB desktop microphones can be ideal for Apple speech recognition. Their long, often flexible or adjustable gooseneck bring the mic element in closer proximity to your mouth for more accurate voice pattern interpretation without the hair-messing or discomfort that an over-the-head headset might entail.
USB With Mute Button
In particular, there's a wide range of affordable, Apple-friendly USB condenser mics that are driver-free, plug and play compatible with any audio-based software app for Mac OS X. Many deliver exceptionally clean, clear and full-range high-fidelity voice reproduction without necessarily costing a fortune. Many in the $20-$40 USD price range deliver excellent audio response far superior to Apple's internal mics.
USB Portable Mics For MacBook DictationYou might be suprised to learn how lousy a MacBook's internal microphone sounds if you compared audio files of it with nearly any brand-name stand-alone condenser mic. There's a handful of excellent and highly portable tiny USB microphones for more accurate MacBook dictation, podcast recording, vocals and music when traveling.
Samson Go-Mic Direct
The Go-Mic Direct may be a great option for speech recognition and more on the go. It features a high-quality condenser element which pivots, making it easy to direct it optimally towards your voice as you dictate.
4-Pole Analog TRRS MicrophonesStarting after 2010, Apple began standardizing on a single, unifying 4-Conductor TRRS audio jack. A single CTIA compliant TRRS plug supports both microphone input and left and right stereo audio playback output. The Windows / PC world has long used incompatible headsets with separate plugs for the mic and headphones. Analog speech recognition headsets for PC's with TWO SEPARATE 1/8" plugs or many PC-style microphones are NOT Mac compatible - unless you use them with a USB digital audio a adapter.
When buying a 1/8" 3.5mm connected Analog microphone, choose a 4-Pole plug for use with Mac, iPhone and iPads.
Analog Lapel Microphone
You have to shop carefully, but more and more mic headsets and desktop analog microphones now support the single 4-Pole TRRS mic + headset/earbud connection to work on a modern Mac or iOS device. Worst case scenario you can use an Analog-To-Digital USB audio dongle to allow use of older-style PC microphones or mic headsets that have two separate plugs.
PC Speech Recognition Headset AdaptersTo use an older 2-plug PC compatible type of mic headset for speech and dictation on MacOS, you'll need an adapter:
Stereo Headphones + Mono Microphone
You may already own a Not-So-Mac-Compatible Windows PC style headset. You'll recognize it because it will have TWO SEPARATE 1/8" - 3.5mm plugs on the end of the cable: One (likey 3-conductor TRS) for the mono or stereo ear cups, and a separate (likely 2-conductor TR) for the microphone. To use a headset like these for speech recogntion on a Macintosh, you'll need a USB Digital to Analog audio adapter dongle like shown above.
Proximity Helps Sound Capture QualityIn general, you'll want the mic headset, lapel or desktop microphone within close proximity to your mouth - ideally 4" to 18" - with your sound input levels adjusted accordingly in Apple's System Preferences > Sound > Input settings. If using a conventional style studio mic - you may find a desk-clamp boom-arm with spring suspension to be a handy accessory for optimal mic placement during your Apple speech to text dictation sessions. Mics with foam covers or screen pop filters can help improve your speech recording quality as well.
Tags: microphone for dictation mac, best microphone for dragon dictate, mac speech recognition mic, dictation microphone mac