If you want to record audio on the iPhone, you always have the built-in microphone. But if you want to step up your recording game, connecting an external microphone can be a little daunting. The IK Multimedia iRig Mic HD 2 is a quality, affordable condenser microphone that will do the trick.
- Microphone Type: condenser, electret
- Capsule Size: 0.55″
- Polar Pattern: cardioid
- Interface Type: USB digital microphone with a built-in low-noise, high-definition preamp
- Conversion: 24-bit A/D, 24-bit D/A
- Sampling Rate: 44.1 kHz, 48 kHz, 88.2 kHz and 96 kHz
- Frequency Response: 20 Hz – 20 kHz, -3 dB
- Maximum Sound Pressure: 125 dB
- Sensitivity: -40 dB, 10 mV/Pa
- Windscreen: built-in
- Sensitivity: adjustable over a 40 dB range
- Controls: Built-in low profile input gain and headphone volume contols/li>
- Metering: Built-in multicolor LED for status and audio level indication
- Connector Type: standard Micro-USB
- Headphones Output: 1/8″ TRS jack
- Power: powered by connected device
- iRig Mic HD 2 microphone
- Lightning to micro-USB cable
- USB to micro-USB cable
- Protective storage bag
- Mic clamp
- 5/8″ to 3/8″ thread adapter
- Table top stand
- Size: 188mm/7.4″ x 49mm/1.93″
- Weight: 325g/11.46oz
- Cables length: 1.5m/59″
Speaking of cables, the kit comes with two. One connects to your standard USB, the other is Lightning for iOS devices.
You’ll find two knobs on the mic body: One for microphone gain, and the other for headphone monitoring. And LED blinks blue, red, green and orange to let you know what’s going on.
This page in the instructions shows what the colors mean. If it’s blue, increase gain. If it’s red, you’re probably clipping and need to turn things down. Ideally, you’ll want to be in the green or orange range.
This little fold-up tripod is a great addition. I noticed the mic clip even comes with a threaded adapter to use with a standard “camera” style tripod attachment as well as a mic stand.
So how does the microphone sound? I placed these two microphones side by side in my purpose-built sound room, to eliminate variables of environmental noise. On the left is the Neumann TLM103, and on the right is the iRig Mic HD 2.
Before you readers with Golden Ears cry afoul, I KNOW these are like apples and oranges: The TLM103 is a large-diaphragm condenser, and the iRig is an electret condenser. But apples and oranges are both fruit for different occasions, and I would hesitate dragging my Neumann outside the house.
These two clips were recorded at the same time. No EQ or compression added.
Sample 2: iRig Mic HD 2 connected directly to an iPhone 7Plus
Comparing the two samples, the Neumann TLM103 (and other gear) sounded just a little warmer. The iRig Mic HD 2 sounded terrific. Maybe just a hint brighter and some barely imperceptible noise deep in the grass. Unless you’re doing industrial tests in anechoic chambers, or you have a serious case of “I must spend 10x more money”, the iRig Mic HD 2 is an excellent value in a compact package.