The battle between Android and Apple’s iOS systems is intense. The iPhone came first in 2007, and the first Android phone came a year later. Google is behind the development of Android systems, with Samsung being one of the biggest users.
External manufacturers tend to work with both systems. And when you look for the Best External Android Microphones, it is common that they will also operate with iOS. It is a developing market as phones and tablets become more sophisticated.
Today many professionals, semi-pros, and others use their phones for many things. Sometimes it is for recording interviews for podcasts or video presentations. The video capabilities of the phones are really very good. But they have left the audio behind in their development.
The microphones on the phones aren’t brilliant, but they are not that bad. The performance is just at a lower level than the video. To improve the sound, there are many better options produced by specialists in microphone production.
So, let’s take a look at what’s on offer and the perfect one for you…
Top 8 Best External Android Microphones In 2021 Reviews
1 Rode smartLav+ Omnidirectional Lavalier Microphone
The first stop is down to Australia, where we look at this Lavalier mic from Rode. A good manufacturer who always makes great-sounding mics that are tough and sturdy. If you need a mic for interviews, podcasts, or voice-overs, this is worth a look. That is what it has been designed for, and it produces excellent results. It is also very good if you are giving a presentation or delivering tutorials.
The performance level is high because it is a high-quality condenser mic with an omnidirectional pattern. The target source can move their head around, as people sometimes do, but the sound is still captured. The recording is, therefore, stable. And with the mic producing clear, crisp results with little background noise, it is ideal.
It is designed to work with either Android or iOS devices. It will produce equally great results with either. The build quality is excellent, with a TRRS connection with a sleeve. Also, a Kevlar cable that has been reinforced for added strength.
There is a well-designed miniature attachment for the target source to clip on to clothing that is quite sturdy. It is discreet, and so won’t become the center of attention during a live interview.
It has a built-in foam pop shield on the outside of the mic that will reduce a certain amount of external noise. This could be an advantage in external use. It also comes with a carrying pouch.
For extra editing and for final publishing, there are some further extras you can buy from Rode. That will depend on the quality level you require. If you are seeking professional-level results, they will be worth considering. An extra that is provided is the Rode app, which will give you some options for use and production.
We always recommend that you check with your device manufacturer before purchase as compatibility needs to be confirmed. As long as it’s compatible, it is a Lavalier that produces excellent results at a very attractive price point.
- Excellent omnidirectional performance.
- External filter to reduce plosives.
- App essential for some features.
2 Shure MVL Omnidirectional Condenser Lavalier Microphone
If we are talking microphones, it won’t take long before we hear the name of Shure. In the world of mics, they are considered one of the big names. Not only do they produce great sounding microphones, but they also have an extra string to their bow.
They are legendary for the toughness of the design and build of their products at whatever level. A Shure Mic will be able to take what you can throw at it. This Lavalier, the MVL is a good example. As we might expect, it doesn’t carry any unnecessary baggage or excesses. It is just ruggedly functional.
This condenser mic with an omnidirectional pattern which makes it ideal for recording narration and vocals for interviews, podcasts, or similar. Additionally, it will even extend its operational use to giving speeches or presentations and even voice-overs.
It has a 3.5mm TRRS connection. This will connect to any phone or other device that carries a microphone socket. But it will also operate with some cameras or even a laptop with the correct fittings.
For outside use, it has a foam covering to the mic but also utilizes Shure’s RF/GSM system to reduce unwanted noise. The mic itself is quite small but is built with Shure’s reputation for stability. It has a mic clip that is also strong but is a bit larger than some other clips we see. This means that it might be visible depending on what the clip is affixed to.
Typically, the sound reproduction is excellent, and it will produce very clear results. It is supplied with a windscreen and carrying pouch. There is also a Sony MOTIV app if you want to use it for iOS devices where you can download the necessary software.
A good mic by a world-class manufacturer at a great price. Need anymore? Certain to be considered as one of the Best External Android Microphones.
- Wide sound range for applications.
- Quality sound and features.
- Large clip.
3 Audio-Technica ATR-3350IS Omnidirectional Condenser Lavalier Mic
Audio Technica is a company with a reputation for producing quality in whatever product they create. Their microphones have real quality, and they are always set at an attractive price point.
This is a Lavalier condenser mic that gives an omnidirectional full range coverage. It has a frequency range of 50-18,000 Hz. It will perform quite well in a range of activities. These include the usual interviews and podcasts. But it is also going to work well for dance or aerobic instructors. It is for connecting to phones, though, that is its main operation.
It has a six-meter cable with a 3.5mm plug and comes with an adapter for use with the latest smartphones, either Android or iOS. This is a mic with a cost-effective price that will give you a decent voice reproduction. Designed for users who want a Lavalier mic on a budget, it will not perform like a more expensive mic might.
For basic interviewing and videos, it works well. To get the very best results, it will probably operate with more success indoors. Braving the elements might be a problem for it even though it has a foam windscreen included.
It is a nice comfortable size and is well-built with a secure clip for attaching the mic. There is an ON/OFF switch, which can be useful. Unfortunately, it hasn’t got too much in the way of preventing unwanted background noise. But as we said, it is a budget mic, and you can’t expect it to perform like one costing much more.
As a cheaper mic, it is worth looking at if that is what you need. It comes with a battery, windscreen, and adapter with a clip for attaching the mic to the subject. And it is Audio-Technica so you can be assured of good build quality.
- Decent reproduction.
- Variety of uses.
- Cost-effective price.
- Low quality for professionals.
4 ZaxSound Professional Cardioid Condenser Microphone
ZaxSound is a company based in China that has only been around since 2015. Not a great deal of time to build themselves any commercial profile. Nevertheless, they are beginning to do that with microphones like this. At its price point, this is an impressive mic and one to consider as one of the Best Affordable External Android Microphones around.
If what you need is a mic with a decent sound that has a variety of uses but at a budget price, then read on. This is a well-built mic that is exactly that. It is a condenser mic with a cardioid pattern. That means it collects its sound from the front and excludes sound from the rear and the sides.
It has TRRS 3.5mm, and USB connections and no software or extra drivers are needed. This mic comes with a six-foot cable that you just simply plug in and use. It is designed to work with all Android smartphones and iPhones and tablets after 2010, as well as PCs and notebooks. For the very latest phones, you made need an adapter.
This is an ideal mic for interviews for podcasts or videos. It has a very practical tripod stand that can be used to ensure there are no unwanted handling noises. The stand will revolve through 180 degrees.
The sound achieved is quite surprising in its clarity. Those who are trying to achieve a high-quality narration or vocal sound might like to clean it up a little using a package like Audacity. But that is only for those who need high quality to publish online. For semi-pro and hobby use, the basic sound is better than adequate.
If you are beginning to work with sound with your phone, it is an ideal first mic. It is well-built and quite solid with a nice stand but doesn’t come with a pop filter, so that is an extra. Although, at this price, that hardly matters. Not professional level reproduction but a very good lower-level mic with a very attractive price.
- Solid build.
- Tripod stand included.
- Decent voice reproduction.
- Competitive price.
- Not the best quality sound.
5 Movo PM10 Lavalier Microphone
We think most of us would agree that the cameras on our phones and other devices are really quite good. In the last few years, the standard has risen dramatically. It’s a pity we cannot say the same about the phone’s microphone and the recorded sound. Manufacturers seem to think it is less important than the camera.
Therefore, enter the mic manufacturers. We can now connect up through Bluetooth to good speaker systems to play music. However, the idea of using your phone for video for business, interviews, podcasts, etc. has left a hole for decent sound.
This mic is from Movo. They are a company based in California that specializes in providing audio solutions for videographers and filmmakers. The PM10 is a Lavalier mic designed to be easy to use. It provides good clear sound when used at a sensible volume. However, it doesn’t seem to like people who talk loudly or shout and will clip them rather early.
It is a plug and play system with no need for extra drivers, and no batteries are required. You just plug the mic into the 3.5mm TRRS jack socket and away you go. If you are using it with one of the later iPhones, you will need a lightning dongle.
It is an Electret condenser mic with a frequency response of 35 Hz to 18 kHz. It has an omnidirectional polar pattern. And it produces a sound that is good enough to be considered as one of the Best External Android Microphones for Movies.
It is a good package that Movo has presented. It includes a compact travel carrying bag and a four-foot connecting cord. There are two metal clips for attaching the mic to the subject. There are also two foam windshields to help reduce any unwanted ambient noise, whether inside or out.
The metal clips are especially worthy of note. They are tough and aren’t going to break easily but can still be easily concealed. This is a very well-designed and impressive Lavalier mic at a very good price point. It is a mic that gives you good performance without breaking the bank.
- Attachments provided.
- Crisp and clear sound.
- Competitive price.
- At this price, nothing at all.
6 Rode VideoMic Me Compact TRRS Cardioid Mini
Could you design a mic that will be tough enough to be used outdoors in all situations? If so, this offering from Rode might well be very close to the design you would choose. But despite its tough exterior, it had some built-in features that make it suitable for a variety of indoor uses.
The VideoMic Me Compact is a cardioid mini Shotgun mic. It is quite small, measuring just 3.1 by 0.8 by 1.5 inches and at 34 grams is remarkably lightweight. All good design features considering it is going to be attached to your phone.
It connects to the phone via the 3.5mm socket. It is fully compatible with Android and iOS phones. Nevertheless, we would still advise a compatibility check with your particular device before purchase. The frequency range is 100hZ to 29kHz, and it has a maximum SPL of 140dB.
The wide frequency range and high SPL immediately make it suitable for more than just interviews, podcasts, or narration for Youtube videos. Those figures, especially the SPL, mean that live concerts fall right in the remit of this phone. The volume is not going to phase it one bit.
It will, though, still handle the simple interview easily. And for outside broadcasts, a furry windshield is included. This won’t eradicate all excess external noise, but it will cut down on wind and ambient noise. It has a mount that is adjustable to ensure it will obtain a decent fit for whatever device you attach it to.
It might not be the most attractive mic for a phone you will ever see. It’s built to do a job, and it does it well. You do though, need a 3.5mm jack socket to operate it that may rule out some of the newer phones and devices where the manufacturers in their wisdom have excluded them. There are adapters available, of course, as an extra.
It is a mic with a wide range of options for use. It is well-built and set at an attractive price point.
- Tough build.
- Fits easily to your device.
- Versatile recording options.
- Only for devices with a 3.5mm socket.
- Adapter not included.
7 Comica CVM-VS08 Professional Cardioid Condenser Directional
This mic from Comica is built with a rugged design but is able to fit comfortably to your phone or device. It has an aluminum body that gives it its tough look, but it is also very lightweight.
Weighing just 3.84 ounces, it is going to sit comfortably on your phone. If you are using it outdoors, it is supplied with a foam windshield and a furry windscreen. This will not completely eradicate any ambient noise from wind, etc., but it will help to minimize it.
The CVM-VS08 is a condenser shotgun design with a super-cardioid polar pattern. The super-cardioid pattern is much more directional than a Cardioid. Being so highly directional, it can often cause problems with positioning. Sound will be gathered along the axis of the mic, and the subject will need to be within about 20cms to receive an optimum recording.
It has a standard TRRS 3.5mm jack socket and also a TRS if it is being used with a camera. If you are planning to use it with one of the newer Apple products, it will need an adapter for connection. It is compatible with Android and iOS devices with a 3.5mm socket.
There are no real extra issues with regard to recording in iOS mode. Most of the features are readily available. In Android, it is fine in audio Mode. However, in video mode, if you find your phone doesn’t work, you may need to use a third-party video app.
It is a mic that produces good results, providing it is positioned correctly but does have a few potential operation problems, though. Having a realistic price point, it is worth checking compatibility with your device before purchase.
- Suitable for all weather.
- Aluminum build.
- Windscreen and windshield supplied.
- Some operational problems.
8 Flexible Condenser Microphone
This is an Electret condenser Shotgun mic designed with your devices very firmly in mind to improve the audio capture. It is designed initially for iPhone and iPad but works equally well with Android phones.
Connections are through the TRRS 3.5mm socket, although when connecting with later iPhones, it will need a lightning cable. This should be included as part of your Apple package with the phone.
It is well set up for easy voice recording. And the Shotgun design is there to remove any unwanted sound from the back and the sides. It is a compact little mic, and at 0.64 ounces isn’t going to cause any weight problems when attached to the device. For ease of use, no batteries are required; it takes its power from the device you use it with.
It has a frequency range of 35Hz ~ 18KHz.The mic is rotatable, so you can direct it towards the subject for recording interviews for podcasts. Or, if required, you can turn it round to face the operator for a narration of a particular visual aspect of what is being recorded.
If being used in harsher external conditions, a foam windshield is fitted to try and reduce a little of the ambient noise. It has a built-in shock mount system to remove some of the vibrations and handling noises.
At the price point, you can hardly go wrong. It won’t provide the very best audio, but it is a cost-effective solution to improving the audio of your phone. For those creating basic video and podcasts, it is an ideal little mic.
- Small and easy to use.
- Cost-effective price.
- Rotatable mic.
- Built-in shock mount system.
- Some need a higher quality recording.
Looking For More Amazing Mics?
With so many superb microphone options on the market, it might also be worth checking out our reviews of the Best Wireless Microphones, the Best iOS Microphones, the Best Computer Microphones, the Best USB Microphones, the Best Microphones YouTube, the Best Lavalier Microphones, and the Best Cheap Microphone Under 50 Dollars currently available.
So, What Are The Best External Android Microphones?
Let us assume that we are very non-technical and just want to improve the audio sound of our phone. As we mentioned in the introduction, the video is fine, so we just need to get an audio track to match.
A Lavalier mic and there were some very good ones, does limit us to interviews, and we might need more than that. In that case, for ease of use and with some nice features, we would choose the…ZaxSound Professional Cardioid Condenser Microphone.
It is very basic but does the job well and has a tripod stand if needed. Therefore, this gives it a variety of potential options for use and isn’t going to cost us a lot of money.
So, definitely, our choice as the Best Android External Microphone currently available.