The Internet is, in many ways, the great equalizer. One merely logs onto a website and champions their opinions, wares, etc. to find a niche following and chase the promise of fame and glory. With this, there has been a seriously large crop of home studios growing in the United States. The term is ambiguous, but within the past few years we’ve seen big name, professional audio companies acknowledge this trend and begin to churn out top performing gear for the 8:30 PM-I-hope-the-kids-don’t-wake-up-and-ruin-this-take audiophiles.
Enter Blue Microphones’ Yeti unit, which any Stars Wars aficionado would be daft to not point out the similarities in architecture to R2D2. It is unclear if this is what Blue Microphones was going for. Regardless, this desktop unit will be as trusted a companion as R2 and for a remarkably reasonable price.
When destroying the packaging like a rabid werewolf to record your moon howls, you’ll note that the Yeti is fat. A nice, thick heaviness is evident with the microphone weighing 1.2 lbs. and the stand another 2.2 lbs. Products with weight, especially microphones, are a favorite around these parts. The entire unit, microphone and stand, measure about a foot tall and become a monument to your musicality if left on your desk. Cool. The stand features a pivot point in the center, also acting as a counterweight to the weighty goose egg of a microphone.
The Yeti is completely silver and shiny and will probably flair your ADD with its design. On the bottom of the unit are a USB port, and a headphone pass-through. The front features the volume for the headphones as well as a lighted mute button. The back of the unit features the two most important knobs of all: a gain knob and a pattern setting knob.
What differentiates the Yeti from any ol’ desktop USB microphone is this pattern setting knob. The Yeti is capable of 4 different microphone geometries. In case you’ve been speed reading this review I’ll type that again, the Yeti is capable of 4 different microphone geometries. At your fingertips, for a reasonable price, you have a stereo microphone, a cardioid microphone, an omnidirectional microphone and a bidirectional microphone housed within what looks to be R2D2. Your Spidey senses should be tingling.
For the average home studio, you probably don’t have multiple hundreds to drop on the proper padding and configuration to dampen unwanted ambient noise and echo, etc. While the Yeti is not a replacement to a proper set up, the 4 patterns housed within the unit can optimize your recording style to your location and really provide a professional sound. The microphone is THX certified, and while we could entertain a discussion about the merits of USB microphones, know that the Yeti is capable of CD quality recordings. This is more than enough for the at-home audio snobs operating on their 9-5 job budget.
Recorded sound quality with the Yeti was beyond our expectations. Crispy, clear, and extremely sensitive. Emphasis on the extreme sensitivity, so go ahead and splurge for the Blue Microphones pop filter as well. You won’t regret that choice. For vocal artists looking to record, you need travel no further, and for the young Neil Youngs looking to record a simple acoustic set the Yeti is also your friend. Obviously, if you place the Yeti up to a drum kit it’s going to sound like you placed a USB microphone next to a drum kit. But for the most demanding of home studio recording projects, we put our confidence fully into the Yeti.
Blue Microphones’ Yeti sells, on average, for $120. This is a steal, and as far as we are concerned an unparalleled bargain for a top-notch USB microphone. Stop wasting your time reading the Amazon comments about other mics and pick up the Yeti immediately.