Do you plan on recording yourself while playing live?
Or are you looking for a microphone to record your trumpet in the studio?
That is the first question you need to answer when choosing the best mic for trumpet recording.
Your playing style also make a difference.
If you tend to move around a lot, you’ll probably be better off with a wireless mic.
If you stay in one place, an XLR mic is ideal.
Keep reading for brief reviews of the best trumpet recording microphones on the market, followed by a brief buyer’s guide that covers the main features you need to look for.
Table of Contents
- 1 Best Microphones For Recording Trumpet Compared
- 2 Best Mic For Trumpet Recording: Reviews
- 2.1 Best Overall: AKG P120 High-Performance Recording Microphone
- 2.2 Highest Quality: Audio-Technica AT2020 Cardioid Condenser Studio XLR Microphone
- 2.3 Best Budget Trumpet Mic: GLS Audio Instrument ES-57
- 2.4 Best Kit: Tonor XLR Condenser Microphone Kit
- 2.5 Best Plug-N-Play: ZealSound Studio Recording Microphone
- 2.6 Best Wireless Trumpet Mic: XIAOKOA UHF Wireless Instruments Microphone
- 3 Trumpet Recording Microphone Buying guide
- 4 Best Mic For Trumpet Live Recording: Final Thoughts
Best Microphones For Recording Trumpet Compared
Best Mic For Trumpet Recording: Reviews
The following are the best mics on the market for recording your trumpet playing. The first is our favorite overall, but any of the models below delivers tons more value for the money than any other choices on the market.
Best Overall: AKG P120 High-Performance Recording Microphone
- A perfect microphone for project studios and home recording
- Versatile recording applications
- Premium components
- Affordable price for such a microphone
- Needs a bit of experience and technical knowledge to get the best out of it
This is a microphone that can record virtually any source. The P120 has a 2/3 inch diaphragm with a cardioid polar pattern.
The cardioid pattern is designed to minimize unwanted noise, capturing sources only from the front of the microphone. This makes the P120 ideal for capturing studio recordings.
The low-mass diaphragm provides clear, precise sound with exceptional detail. It also features an interchangeable low-cut filter that eliminates rumble, which is perfect for trumpets.
The microphone also includes a switchable attenuation pad to handle higher sound pressure levels of up to 150dB. The wide frequency range and versatile design are ideal for recording everything, from vocals to instruments.
Highest Quality: Audio-Technica AT2020 Cardioid Condenser Studio XLR Microphone
- One of the best microphones for capturing musical instruments and vocals that you can find
- Cardioid pattern provides clean recorded sound
- Can capture high tones without any distortion
- Good sound quality
- Relatively flat frequency response
- Useful for spoken parts and broadcasts, as well as singing and instruments
- Highly reliable and great build quality
- Incredible value for the price
- A bit pricey but for a good reason
- Higher self-noise rate
- Some additional controls and features could be useful
With the Audio-Technica AT2020 microphone, you will discover a new way to capture and output trumpet sounds.
You will achieve obtained reproduction as close to the original as possible. This mic is excellent for recording trumpet sounds due to its sensitivity and wide frequency range.
Being a condenser mic, it will allow a clear and fine result. It is ideal for trumpets as well as vocals, percussions, guitars, pianos, among others.
Due to its defined response to the voice, it is the mic most chosen by professionals. Its cardioid polar pattern offers greater sensitivity to front sounds, thus preventing noise from the sides and the rear.
Best Budget Trumpet Mic: GLS Audio Instrument ES-57
- Incredible performance for the price
- Can record multiple instruments, not just trumpets
- Cancels side noise quite well
- For the best recording, you must be close to this mic and not move a lot, which can be quite hard when emotion kicks in
If the first two quality choices were a bit pricey for your needs, there is no need to worry. This mic is quite affordable, but also still usable.
Although it is cheap, the ES-57 microphone was designed to sound like the professional standard mics in the recording industry.
The GLS Audio ES-57 microphone comes with a mic clip, and it’s a dynamic instrument microphone that can capture the trumpet quite well.
The unidirectional response is between 50hz and 15,000hz, sensitivity comes at 72 dB at 1,000 Hz (open circuit voltage), and it has an impedance of 300 ohms at 1,000 Hz.
The ES-57 dynamic cardioid mic is great for recording a whole range of instruments, such as trumpets, percussion, vocals, and much more, all for a very reasonable price.
Best Kit: Tonor XLR Condenser Microphone Kit
- In this package, you get one condenser microphone, a pop filter, a suspension mount, an additional metal shock mount, a microphone cover, one XLR cable (6.6ft), 4 cable ties, and a user manual
- Great performance for under $60
- Can be mounted to best suit your playing movements
- Requires an external power supply
- Should be connected to a preamp or audio interface mixer
For slightly less than $60, this enhanced microphone capsule comes with low-noise FET preamp handling, high SPL, and wide dynamic range. This gives it a warm sound and natural smooth high-end clarity.
This mic has a cardioid polar pattern with excellent off-axis sound suppression capabilities to reduce sound pickup from the sides and rear and better eliminate background noise. It’s ideal for recording vocals and acoustic instruments, which includes the trumpet.
It is made of durable steel and comes with a desk clamp with 4 times larger contact area to easily clip to any desk up to 2.362 inches thick, which is suitable for microphones weighing up to 4.0 pounds.
Best Plug-N-Play: ZealSound Studio Recording Microphone
- Can be used with phones and computers
- Built-in sound card mixer
- Captures sounds everywhere around it
- Won’t provide the cleanest trumpet sound in certain rooms
If you need a microphone not only to record your trumpet playing but also to record your voice, make vlogs, or do similar podcasts, this is a great option.
The ZealSound microphone comes with a trident that holds it on the desk for easier positioning. It also has a pop filter which is quite useful when recording trumpet sounds.
The mic has a built-in sound card mixer that will facilitate the sound quality when recording. It also has switch, echo, and volume controls on it.
And it’s super easy to use. All you have to do is plug it in anywhere, place it on your desk, and start recording.
Best Wireless Trumpet Mic: XIAOKOA UHF Wireless Instruments Microphone
- Elegant, ergonomic, and comfortable design
- Perfect for outdoor live recordings
- Special electro-acoustic hi-fi amplification system
- Detachable head-mounted shelf, support headphones, and manual operation
- Built-in polymer battery with high capacity
- There are better options for indoor recordings
Last but not least – here is a beauty that will help you immensely when trying to record outdoor playing.
The Xiaokoa UHF is a wireless microphone that can be clipped onto the bell of your trumpet (or any other brass instrument). The microphone records the sound which is transferred to the receiver.
The battery lasts for approximately six hours and it has a maximum range of 160 feet between the mic and the receiver.
The mic clip has an LED screen that shows battery power, sound frequency, and volume, so you can monitor both your playing and recording on the spot. It is the perfect tool when you are playing on the move or simply have no space for mic stands.
Trumpet Recording Microphone Buying guide
There are a few things that you should keep in mind when buying a microphone for your trumpet, either for recording at home or playing live. These go for brass as well as plastic trumpets. Here is a quick buying guide.
Maximum Sound Pressure Level
This is the maximum level at which the microphone will begin to distort the sound. The higher the pressure, the better.
An optimal microphone should have a sensitivity of 135dB SPL or much more. This means that it can handle much higher sound pressures without distorting the output.
Noise Level From Inside
This is the sound produced by air molecules hitting the diaphragm of the microphone. In such a case, the lower the level, the better. It is measured in decibels and the acceptable level is close to 40 dB SPL. It must be at least 20 dB SPL to be considered reliable.
This factor is calculated from the maximum tolerated sound pressure and the inseparable sound pressure. It is calculated by subtracting the latter from the former.
For example, if a device can tolerate a sound pressure level of 150 dB and an inseparable sound pressure level of 30 dB, the signal-to-noise ratio is 120 dB. The higher the signal-to-noise ratio, the cleaner the device.
This is the output level in relation to the acoustic signal that you are concerned about and it is the level of electrical voltage at the microphone. In other words, it is important for the fact that it tells us the precision with which we have the possibility of capturing the puny sounds.
In such a case, we measure the pressure at 1 volt per microphone. It is usually a negative sensitivity value, so the closer to 1, the better. The lower the sensitivity, the more difficult it is to pick up the signal.
This is a very important value. The output impedance is the internal resistance of the microphone and is measured as a function of continuity.
Microphones can be classified into low impedance (50-1000 ohms), medium impedance (5000-15000 ohms), and high impedance (20,000 ohms or much more).
When the pressure level is prominent, the microphone distorts the signal. In other words, the signal saturates. In such a case, there is no objective factor to measure the limit. Whether it can withstand much higher pressure levels depends on the shape and construction.
When To Buy Wireless Microphones
A wireless microphone is a very useful tool for singers or players who move a lot or use both hands, like trumpeters. Therefore, wireless microphones are very popular with musicians who perform live.
The best wireless microphones offer unprecedented independence of movement, without the sound quality being inferior to that of the wired models.
Advantages of using wireless microphones are:
- Freedom of movement
- Easy to use and move
- High sound quality
- More expensive than a wired one
- Needs a battery
Best Mic For Trumpet Live Recording: Final Thoughts
Which trumpet recording microphone is best for you depends on your specific needs. The biggest differentiator is whether you need a mic for live recording or for studio recording.
In the studio, an XLR mic is definitely best. For live recording, XLR mics are also great, but if you tend to move around a lot, you’d be better off with a wireless microphone.
Whichever type of mic you end up getting, you can’t go wrong with any of the models above. All give you far more value for your money than any other options on the market.