Are you someone who makes ASMR content? Do you tell atmospheric stories that require sounds to be coming from different directions in the listener’s headphones? If you said yes to any of these questions, you might find yourself wanting the best binaural microphones on the market.
Fortunately, this article has you covered. As will become evident throughout the article, 3Dio will be the king of binaural microphones, but there are also a couple of non-3Dio bran microphones found in the article just in case you want to be unique.
|3DIO FS XLR|
|Sound Professional’s Binaural Microphones|
|3Dio FS Pro II|
1. 3Dio FS
If you’ve spent any amount of time browsing ASMR videos or streams you should recognize the shape of this microphone immediately. It’s one of the “ear-microphones” that are really popular for producing ASMR content. As silly as the design is, it has a serious purpose. It was designed specifically for people who make binaural ASMR content.
Because the microphone aims to simulate the human ear, it should produce sounds that stimulate the ASMR response that people get.
Let’s say you rub paper across the earlobe. The earlobe and paper meeting will make sounds similar to what you would hear if you were to actually rub paper across your ear.
Just because the design is geared toward ASMR, it doesn’t detract from its value for other projects.
Its applications can range from ASMR all the way to recording the sounds of nature for an ambiance soundtrack. This is an XLR-type microphone, and it will require some sort of sound interface in order to be hooked into your computer. This is how most of the microphones in this list will be.
Because of the power of this microphone, it requires a battery to operate. This shouldn’t be a problem because the FS comes with batteries included.
- Low-profile, so it doesn’t take up a lot of space on your desk
- Easy to carry to places if you need to record remotely
- Made of sturdy material
- Perfect for ASMR
- Quality sound
- Some products produce an irritating buzzing noise.
- Customer service is almost nonexistent for this product
- It may be difficult to set up for beginners
- Looks awkward on your desk
- The mic may be too sensitive sometimes
- Requires batteries
2. 3DIO FS XLR
A continuation of the previous listing, this is a step up from the FS model that 3Dio has to offer. As expected, the sound quality is increased. It also features the same ear-like design that the previous model has and so you can expect a lot of the same principles to apply to this microphone.
The biggest difference has to be in the sound department. Even though it’s still on the lower end of the spectrum for binaural microphones, it still offers enough quality to impress even professionals who have used the mic.
This microphone also requires a battery, and the battery is included when you purchase the microphone.
- Superior sound quality
- Made of sturdy materials
- The same size as the previous model, so it also has a low-profile
- Perfect for ASMR beginners
- Easy to carry
- Customer service is the same as the first product, nonexistent.
- It may be prone to breaking if you drop it a lot
- It may be hard for first-time users to set up
- Requires batteries
- Very pricey for the quality
These are binaural microphones that fit inside of your ear cavity in order to properly capture what you hear. They are unique in their design, but you’ll find one other pair in this list that follows a similar design philosophy.
Be that as it may, uniqueness doesn’t equate to overall quality. How do they sound? They sound great for what they are. They seem to be perfect if you’re trying to capture the sounds of nature while you’re on a walk because of their portable nature.
They will fit most ear shapes, but not all. They’re really quite comfortable, and you can wear them for long periods of time.
- Unique in design
- Good sound quality for their price
- Comfortable to wear
- Easy to use
- Requires no batteries
- Prone to breaking
- Limited types of use
- Hard to justify buying if you don’t want to record sounds outside
These are very similar to the above microphones. The difference is that these don’t actually fit into your ear cavity so you’re not getting as natural of a sound. However, this doesn’t detract from their overall quality.
For the price, these are really good microphones for outdoor use. And they can also also be used to make ASMR content if you can find a volunteer to wear them while you do things in their ears.
They’re not that much more expensive than the Sound Professionals, and their sound quality is an improvement overall. If you’re wanting a binaural microphone that you can take anywhere, these are a solid choice.
Seeing as how these are so small, you don’t have to worry about batteries with them. They hook directly into your phone for recording. They’re also really low profile, so you aren’t going to draw a lot of attention to yourself if you’re working on a project that requires sounds from a city or town.
Expert Tip: This is another low-profile microphone. So that means no battery is required. And like the Sound Professional, this device looks like earbuds so you aren’t going to get a bunch of nasty looks from passersby.
- Good quality sound
- Is comfortable
- Easy to store
- Requires no batteries
- Prone to breaking
- No applications outside of portable use
- Shouldn’t be relied on to provide professional quality sound
- Steep price range
It’s no surprise that 3Dio has been featured multiple times in this article. Their microphones can range from a beginner’s microphone, all the way to something a professional would use. The FS Pro II belongs in the latter category.
Its sound quality is exactly where you’d expect it to be in its price range, and it is geared specifically towards people who want to deliver the best possible sound in whatever it is they’re producing.
This isn’t a hobbyist tool, nor is it something you’re going to want to buy if you’re just now getting into the game. This is a serious microphone designed for serious people.
This microphone is a quality workhouse for anyone who’s looking to expand their audio ventures into the realm of professional-sounding content. Even if you’re already a professional, you can’t go wrong with giving this microphone a whirl. You won’t be disappointed. This also requires a battery, but it is included in the packaging.
- Professional Level Quality
- Made of durable materials
- Perfect for content creators
- Compatible with most sound interfaces
- Very expensive
- Not very portable
- Does not come with good storage options
- Can be hard to set up for beginners.
- Requires batteries
Guide: What is a Binaural Microphone?
Binaural microphones are specifically designed stereo-microphone that is aimed at simulating the human ear. They’re used in all sorts of projects ranging from ASMR all the way to producing ambient noises for ambient music. Not all binaural microphones operate the same way, but most are geared towards picking up sounds from two directions.
Binaural microphones are usually very sensitive so they can pick up the faintest of sounds.
As you can see in the list above, 3Dio is currently the most popular name brand in the binaural microphone market. As the list also shows, other companies are popping up with their own spin on binaural microphone design.
Other than the ear-shaped design, or the reliance on the human ear itself, there’s nothing that separates them from other microphones. The reason they get so pricey is that the microphones that these companies use are quality, and are designed to be used with prosthetic ears.
If you’re curious as to what a binaural mic sounds like, just go to YouTube and type in ASMR. All of the big ASMR channels are using binaural microphones in their content. You’ll be able to hear how natural everything sounds on a binaural microphone. They have one job and they do it well simulating the human ear.
If you’re wearing headphones while listening to someone with a binaural microphone, you may find yourself immersed in the experience.
Expert Tip: Another application for binaural microphones is game design or sound design. Most modern games use 3D audio to simulate spatial sound. Binaural mics are great for simulating spatial sound because they use stereo channels to record.
This is perfect for designing sound for a video game because it can really stimulate the brain into believing that you’re there in the action. Binaural microphones can also be used for producing binaural beats. Binaural beats are sound illusions that can really help you meditate.
Some people have strong reactions to the beats, and they get a sort of high from them. Binaural beats can also be used as subtle background noise for relaxing music.
Binaural microphones are great for producing content that is geared towards relaxation, but you can use them for just about anything. You don’t have to be exclusively into sound design or ASMR to get used to these specialized tools. Maybe you’re an animator or storyteller who wants a more atmospheric tone for your project.
This would be perfect for projects that want to emulate certain mental illnesses without disrespecting those who have them.
Maybe you’re a musician who wants to experiment with adding 3D audio to their repertoire. Binaural microphones are used to give a sense of space to instruments that you just can’t get with a standard microphone. The 3D sound captured by binaural microphones really adds a layer to the music that makes it stand out.
I’ll add one last application here just so you can get an idea of what to use binaural microphones for. You can use them to pick up the faint sounds of nature. If you go to a hobby store or an herb store, you may find CDs that are labeled “sounds of nature.” Or you can search them up on the internet and find plenty of tracks that have 3D spatial sound.
A great many of these tracks use binaural microphones to capture sounds out in the wild. Binaural microphones are sensitive enough to pick up even the softest of breezes, and can easily capture the soft chirps of singing songbirds.
What is The Best Binaural Microphone?
The 3Dio FS Pro II is the clear winner. It is hands down the best binaural microphone on the market. Its quality comes with a hefty price, but if you’re serious about taking your content to a professional level you can’t beat the value that this thing has to offer. It is clearly the best bang for your buck.
It should be noted that this microphone is not for beginners. It was not designed with the layman in mind, and you’re going to have to have previous experience with binaural microphones.
But if you’re someone who is already making money from content such as ASMR or sound design, you can consider this microphone to be an obvious upgrade from whatever you’re using now. It functions like it’s supposed to, and outshines every microphone on this list in terms of sound quality alone.
If this were a standard microphone, it would still be worth the money they’re asking for it. It isn’t standard, so the price is fairly cheap for what you’re getting. If you take care of it. it can last you a long, long time. This microphone should pay for itself if you’re already making money.
Whether you’re working on sound design, storytelling, or coming up with sounds for your ASMR streams, binaural microphones might just be for you. If you want the absolute best, most reliable binaural microphone on this list, you’re going to want to go with the 3Dio FS Pro II.
Please feel free to comment if you have any questions that you might have.