Luke spends his time playing video games, binge-watching TV and hanging out with his German Shepherd, Ziggy and Bernese Mountain Dog Pandora.
The EPOS B20 Streaming Microphone is entering the battle, and is doing so during a time where streaming is continuing to be at its absolute height. Hell, streaming was already huge, but the use of at-home audio recording devices like this has increased due to the varying stages of lockdown we’ve all been in. Streamers are streaming more, newcomers are trying their hand at streaming for the first time, people are podcasting more than ever. Even our team at Checkpoint? We recorded our radio show from the (dis)comfort of our own homes for several months.
After some rigorous testing, we’re pleased to say that the EPOS B20 Streaming Microphone is a solid option for all types of users, whether you’re a streaming veteran or just someone looking to give their audio setup a bit of an upgrade.
What stands out instantly with he B20 is how truly versatile it is. A simple dial on the side allows you to choose the style of recording you want to do; most of us would use the “cardioid” option, which is a word I only learned when I got this microphone. It means that it’s best for solo recording, picking up your voice in front of the mic. However it also has a “stereo” option for a wider sound field so you can have a second person picked up next to you, “omnidirectional” which is useful for group recordings and “bidirectional”, which is great for casting with a partner or in an interview format with them in front of you.
“…the B20 comes in as a very decent option that offers great quality without totally breaking the bank.”
I tested all of these modes and can confirm that it does what it says on the tin. While I mostly used the cardioid setting and used the B20 solo, the other settings showed that sound was picked up appropriately each time, and it’s all changed with an easy flick of the dial. The microphone itself also features controls on it for volume, gain and mute. You’ll notice it also includes a headphone output on the mic itself, so you can monitor your own voice and game audio if you wish (handy for perfectionists).
It all plugs in via USB, and plug-and-play is true here. It will work instantly and work well, but for the tinkerers out there you can also use the EPOS Gaming Suite for further audio customisation, including noise cancelling. It’s not my personal wheelhouse, but dabbling in it is easy enough, and I was familiar with the Suite from using it with the EPOS GSP 370. But honestly, even if you’re not interested in diving deep with the customisation, the microphone delivers a high audio quality. I found initially with a slightly-older laptop that the microphone didn’t play nice with a bit of static I couldn’t get rid of, but on my modern tech (which, let’s face it, most streamers would use), the audio recording came through crisp and clear at all times, with near-broadcast quality.
The design itself is simple and elegant. It’s not a chunky microphone like I’ve seen on some streams, and the simple black finish gives it a professional and sleek look that will fit in nicely with any setup. It’s small, but effective. It comes with a stand that it easily screws into, where you can easily adjust the direction. Compatible with PC, Mac, PS4 and PS5 for those wondering, the EPOS B20 Streaming Microphone comes in at a price point of $329, though I have seen it on sale cheaper at some retailers. That might seem like a lot for an entry-level microphone, but when people are spending upwards of $500 or more for the top-tier stuff, the B20 comes in as a very decent option that offers great quality without totally breaking the bank. It also feels premium in its packaging, which is a nice touch that will make you feel even more profesh.
The best part about the EPOS B20 Streaming Microphone is that it’s priced at a point where it isn’t super intimidating for a casual user, while also being high quality enough for those who don’t want to spend a small fortune on a streaming microphone option. The EPOS B20 is easy to use and delivers a solid audio experience, and if you’re in the market for a microphone upgrade, you should definitely consider it.
The EPOS B20 is available now for $329 AUD.