By Kevin Kelly
Blue Microphones have made professional grade, high quality microphones for years, but it's only been fairly recently that they have moved into the realm of mobile, USB-powered microphone solutions. For years, I've been using their highly effective Snowball USB mic to record podcasts with, as it offers one of the finest portable audio options out there.
Now, they're making things even smaller and more portable. At CES 2012 I checked out both the Tiki and the Mikey microphones, both of which are small enough to fit into your pocket, yet give you a wide range of portable audio options.
The Tiki looks like a steampunk snail, and connects to your computer/laptop via the built-in USB, or through a cable that can extend the reach of the diminutive little bug. It offers noise canceling, voice isolation, and intelligent mute, depending on what you're doing, and is perfect for podcasting, Skype, and recording music sessions. Blue promises that it offers CD-quality sound, and it will retail for $59 later this year.
“We are excited to introduce Tiki as the smartest, most compact USB mic on the market. Designed to mimic human hearing, Tiki brings the conversation into focus and attenuates distracting background noise, like the human ear does naturally in conversations,” said Brian Biggott, CTO of Blue Microphones. “Being a microphone from Blue, Tiki is also designed to deliver professional-quality audio for impromptu vocal tracks or instrument recording. Whether you’re on a conference call or recording guitar, you can now achieve crystal clear audio wherever you go.”
The Mikey is their iPad/iPhone microphone that comes with a ton of bells and whistles. With both automatic and manual gain controls, an LED clipping indicator, a multi-source line-in 3.5mm jack, a 230-degree rotating head and a pass-through USB power jack, the Mikey can handle everything from recording your electric guitar, to interviews, to a podcast and more. It uses the same capsules that are found in the Snowball and Yeti microphones, and delivers terrific sound in a small package. The Mikey retails for $99, which is completely worth it for iPad/iPhone users on the go.
x“Mikey Digital is the highest quality and most versatile solution for capturing professional recordings on your iOS device with most audio apps or the built-in video camera,” said John Maier, CEO of Blue Microphones. “Mikey Digital brings more than professional-quality recording to these mobile platforms, it also turns your iOS device into a studio interface for recording guitar, connecting a lavaliere mic or capturing line level audio straight to your iPod touch, iPhone or iPad.”
For more coverage across the audio spectrum and beyond, check out the rest of MTV Geek's CES 2012 coverage!