Notes: Blue snowball sounds natural on the cardioid setting, but tinny on the omnidirectional setting.
Also picks up a lot of keyboard noise when using the omnidirectional setting; also on the cardioid setting, but not quite as much. Also picks up other background sounds on the omnidirectional setting.
Have you thought about starting a YouTube channel or a podcast? If so, then you may be wondering which gear is best, especially when it comes to audio.
Audio quality is essential whether you run a YouTube channel or a podcast. Poor quality audio can cause people to quickly leave, while high-quality audio will hold viewer and listener interest. So, investing the best microphone you can afford can make or break your credibility with the audience.
In this article, we’re going to review the Blue Snowball vs the Blue Yeti microphones, both of which are extremely popular. We’ll take a look at the specs for each one, as well as the advantages & disadvantages of these mics.
Blue Microphones are Very Popular
You may have noticed that the Blue Yeti or Snowball are used by many YouTubers; by why are these mics so popular?
One of the main reasons is that both of these are USB mics. This means it’s not necessary to connect them through any type of audio interface. Instead, they can connect directly to your device via USB. It’s fast and easy. In addition, both of these microphones include a stand, so you can easily set them up on a table or desk.
But these are only a couple of the reasons that make Blue’s microphones so popular.
Comparison of Specs
Here, we’ll take a look at the specs of the Blue Yeti and the Snowball.
|Blue Snowball||Blue Yeti|
|Type of Mic: Condenser||Type of Mic: Condenser|
Polar Pattern: Cardioid, cardioid with -10 dB, omnidirectional
|Polar Pattern: Cardioid, bidirectional, omnidirectional, stereo|
|Frequency Response: 40Hz to 18kHz||Frequency Response: 20Hz to 20kHZ|
|Compatible with: Windows (plug & play), Mac||Compatible with: Windows (plug & play), Mac|
|Sample Rate: 41.1kHz||Sample Rate: 48kHz|
|In the Box: USB cable, user’s guide, adjustable stand||In the box: USB cable, instructions, adjustable stand|
Both microphones offer USB connectivity, comes with stands, and are compatible with Windows & Mac. And both are condenser mics and come with the same accessories.
Where you’ll notice the difference is in the technical specs. The main difference here is that the Snowball doesn’t offer as many polar pattern options as the Yeti. In addition, there’s a difference in the sample rates and the frequency responses.
The Yeti wins in this comparison. The reason is that it can pick up sounds from more directions. It also has the ability to pick up more information the sound, too. Not only that, but the Yeti also has a higher sample rate and a wider frequency response. In regards to specs, the Yeti wins this round.
Design: The Snowball is a minimalist design, which is both elegant and classic. It also doesn’t come with many confusing buttons and knobs, so setting it up is pretty easy. But keep in mind, without all those other buttons and knobs, you do lose some control over recordings.
Polar settings: This mic does include three settings for its polar pattern switch; however, these are marked 1-3, without too much explanation of exactly what each number refers to. It’s necessary to get out the manual to find the setting you prefer, or experiment.
The Snowball’s three polar patterns are crisp and clear, especially when compared to other mics in this price range. However, it’s good to keep in mind that while the sound is pretty good, you won’t have that professional sound and feel of a higher dollar mic. Some users have opted to use a pop filter, which seems to increase the sound quality for the Snowball.
Stand: The Snowball comes with a stand and seems to be a sturdy mic overall. The stand, however, is easy to knock over, especially if you’re accident prone. The main reason for this is that the microphone ball on top of the stand makes the entire unit somewhat top heavy. So, it may be necessary to invest in a sturdier stand to keep your mic safe.
Design: you’ll have more control with the Yeti, as it offers controls for volume, gain, and muting. However, some have noted that the knobs are wobbly. So, you may need to be more careful with them then the controls on the Snowball.
Polar settings: offers four polar patterns, one more than the Snowball. The Yeti has been described as having a more natural sound that’s present and well-rounded. In fact, it’s the choice of many YouTubers and podcasts. This is also an excellent tool for voice overs. You’ll also notice less hissing, booming, etc. and this is a great mic that works equally well whether you have a high or low voice.
Stand: has a much different look than the Snowball but is still elegant and classic at the same time. This mic is about 3-4 inches taller and the stand requires more area on your table or desk. However, it’s not as easy to knock over as the Snowball due to its more compact, elliptical shape. It’s not at all top-heavy.
Pros and Cons of the Snowball and the Yeti
Here’s an overview of each mics pros & cons:
- Small—takes up less area on desk or table
- Easy on the budget
- Easy setup
- Doesn’t have professional sound
- Easily picks up background noises (including typing on your computer)
- Not many controls
- Top heavy (easy to knock over)
- No mute button
- Sturdy stand
- Offers a variety of controls
- Includes output for headphones
- Excellent sound quality (professional)
- Wobbly knobs
- Takes up more space on desk or table
- Larger mic (taller, too)
- Pricier than the Snowball
Which Microphone Should I Buy?
The answer depends. You consider buying the Snowball if you’re wallet isn’t very full, you don’t need or want to spend more for better sound, and you need a smaller microphone for traveling.
Otherwise, we highly recommend the Yeti. For the money, you’ll have professional sound quality, more polar settings, which means more control over the sounds.
Both the Blue Snowball and the Blue Yeti are excellent choices. It just comes down to the basics such as how much you can afford, and exactly how the mics will be used. Both are great for YouTubers and podcasts, but you will have more control over the Yeti’s sound quality.