With the advent of the computer giving us greater processing power came the Digital Audio Workstation, or DAW. In a matter of a few years, you could perform basic recording at home or in other “non-treated” environments.
Home studios are now very much a part of the music scene. But in terms of quality, they have a lot to live up to if they want to match professional studios. Vocals and solo instruments need a certain environment for recording. So, I decided to take an in-depth look at the best portable vocal booths currently on the market and find the perfect one for your needs.
Vocal Booths are Not Needed at Home?
Some will argue that the use of a vocal recording booth at home is unnecessary. Just a small room is okay. I tend not to agree. They can improve audio quality and isolate noise, and that has to be a good thing.
In a pro studio, you will usually find an area that is isolated away from everything else. That is where they will record vocals or sometimes solo acoustic instruments. The recording is not compromised by unwanted noise as it is protected from it. That is the purpose of a vocal booth.
But it is also treated to ensure that certain sound anomalies do not interfere with the recording. It can be an expensive operation to create a “perfect” sound room. A portable vocal booth needs something similar to reduce unwanted sound.
But you can get some degree of protection from unwanted noise in home recordings. You can even get vocal booths that can be moved around if you need to. So, let’s take a look at what’s available, starting with the…
Top 8 Best Portable Vocal Booths of 2023
1 Versare Hush Screen Portable Divider Sound Dampening – Best Lightweight Portable Vocal Booth
Versare is a company known for building good quality room dividers and partitioning. One of the products they produce is what they call the Hush Screen.
Essentially it is a free-standing sound panel designed to contain expendable noise. Therefore, it is an option for the creation of a vocal booth by placing the mic and the user behind it.
It measures 48 by 72 inches and is two inches thick. It has a nice design that lends itself to a variety of uses. The frame is aluminum which makes it lightweight and easy to move around. There is also an acoustic fiberglass panel with sound-dampening properties.
The design allows it to be placed flush next to walls or any flat surface. This is an asset in many ways. It can be used to section off or even divide a small room in half. Thus creating an area for your vocal booth or a musician’s cubicle.
It isn’t the cheapest option for creating a vocal booth. However, it has options that some other products don’t share. The height and its ability to divide a room are just two of them. Well-made with good materials, it is certainly an option to consider.
- Nice, simple design with good materials and an acoustic fiberglass panel.
- An aluminum frame means it is easy to move around.
- It isn’t cheap.
2 RF-X SE Electronics Portable Vocal Booth – Best Quick Setup Portable Vocal Booth
If you are trying to capture a quality vocal recording, any unwanted sound is going to interfere with that. This RF-X Portable Vocal Booth from SE Electronics will help you get a great recording just about anywhere.
It has been designed as an easy-to-set-up portable vocal booth for any environment. It measures just 18 by 13 by 8 inches and weighs only 5 pounds. That makes it great in a variety of venues. But especially for the smaller home studio.
There is a lightweight, foam-based, vented body with four layers. Additionally, there is a composite panel on the exterior and a wool fabric layer. And there is an air gap and an acoustic layer on the inside. The design is not dissimilar to other acoustic panels using advanced technology, like the Reflexion Filter PRO.
The multi-layered design will filter out a wide range of frequencies across the full sound spectrum. This will reduce any potential sound discoloration.
It has a clamp system and an adapter that will operate with a European or a US mic thread. All the hardware in the build is good quality and very stable.
If you are on a budget but still need to create some great vocal recordings, this is going to be an option. And at this price, it must be considered as one of the Best Portable Vocal Booths.
- Well-designed with four layers of acoustic protection.
- Easy to use and quite stable at a very cost-effective price.
- Some may need a larger area.
3 Neewer NW-5 Foldable Adjustable Portable Sound Absorbing Vocal Recording Panel – Best Heavy Duty Portable Vocal Booth
If what you need is a very heavy-duty sound-absorbing panel, then you will be interested in this from Neewer.
It has a five-panel design with three center panels that are fixed and two end panels that fold in. This makes it easier to transport around if you need to. Also, it will allow you to decide how much ambient noise to allow into the recording using the panels. It measures 16.54 by 15.75 by 8.66 inches.
It is made from aluminum, which means it is quite lightweight and has adjustable knobs to endure a tight fit on the mic stand. There are feet built-in to give it stability. These can be removed to allow you to use it on a desk or other flat surfaces.
There are two key design features, the outer folding diffusion shell and a foam lining to absorb sound. Two curved aluminum plates that are vented with small holes compose the outer shell. These are an attempt to divert some sounds from getting to the mic.
The inner walls of the booth are fitted with high-quality, high-density, sound-absorbing foam. That goes a long way to isolating any unwanted background sounds.
The Mounting System
The booth has a rugged and sturdy clamp that attaches to your mic stand. However, you will need a good quality mic stand as this booth is quite heavy, weighing over six pounds. A microphone mounting hardware kit is included.
As the booth is not enclosed, there will be no problems using larger mics. The reduction in ambient noise is quite good with this booth. And it is built to be very secure.
Although it is heavier than most of the other booths in this review, it is still portable. And it may be more awkward to carry around despite its folding design. Nevertheless, a good booth at an attractive price point.
- Good strong build with a folding design and detachable feet.
- Good noise reduction design at an attractive price.
- It is quite heavy.
4 LyxPro VRI-30 Sound Absorbing and Vocal Recording Microphone Isolation Shield Panel – Best Budget Portable Vocal Booth
Some people can be put off from buying equipment like a vocal booth. They can be quite expensive, and sometimes any available budget is spent elsewhere. That is understandable.
But, if you are recording vocals, the good equipment you’ve bought will count for nothing without a good vocal sound. For those that may be looking for one of the most affordable portable vocal booths, this will be of interest.
It has a good design that features an aluminum backplate with perforations. These will prevent some of the unwanted frequencies from reaching your mic. Inside there is a lining made from high-density, high-quality foam.
The combination of the vented backplate and the sound-absorbing acoustic foam interior acts to reduce excess noise and ambiance. This sound diffusion means that your recording is free from sound wave interference.
Sturdy and secure
A mic stand design that has a sturdy build and legs built-in. This allows you to use it on a desk or flat surface. It measures 19.29 by 12.01 by 3.54 inches and weighs 2.7 pounds. Therefore, I would recommend a quality mic stand able to support that level of weight easily.
This booth is available in different sizes. If you are using a larger microphone, it might be better to look at the larger versions of the booth. A well-made and simple system that produces quite good results at a cost-effective price.
- Good build quality at an attractive price point.
- Can be used on a stand or a desk.
- Mic mount is not height adjustable.
5 Bison Prosound Portable Sound Absorbing Vocal Booth Recording Panel – Best Sound Isolating Portable Vocal Booth
This is another portable vocal booth designed and built for those who might be on a budget. It is a design that offers some interesting options. More on that later.
This portable booth has been created to reduce as much ambient noise and sound reflections in the room as possible. This will give you a good opportunity to make a decent recording.
It measures 14.7 by 14.4 by 9.1 inches and weighs 5 pounds. It has a perforated metal outer frame that has a folding feature. Inside there are two inches of thick sound-absorbing foam. The foam has grooved columns cut into it to deal with standing waves and some reflections.
An interesting option
I mentioned earlier an interesting design feature, in that the outer edges fold inwards. That is useful for storage, traveling, and portability. But it also opens up some interesting sound options.
Set in an open position, it allows a degree of ambient sound into the recording. However, if you fold it to be more closed, it will reduce that noise.
You can mount it directly onto your mic stand or use the adapter enclosed to place it in front of your mic. Or you can mount the booth to your mic stand and use the stand adapter to position your mic. A decent vocal booth at an attractive price. A good buy if you are not looking for a high-quality build.
- Useful folding design that gives you positional options.
- Plenty of sound-absorbing foam at a cost-effective price.
- Not the highest quality build.
6 Monoprice Microphone Isolation Shield – Best Value for the Money Portable Vocal Booth
Monoprice is an interesting company. They don’t manufacture their own products but source cost-effective products from a variety of places. This allows them to offer attractive prices. This acoustic shield is made in China.
The quality of the products in my experience has always been quite good. Not the best you will find but always good value for money. If you’re on a budget, they are always worth a look. That applies to this acoustic shield designed to cut back on ambient noise when using a microphone.
It has a metal backplate that is vented to break down some of the sound reflections. Inside it has sound-absorbent foam. It measures 16.3 by 7.5 inches, but the interesting aspect of its size is the thickness of the sound-absorbing foam.
The internal foam is over three inches thick and is given a pyramid patterned effect. A common pattern in recording studios that will reduce ambient noise. It will reduce unwanted sound levels by about 25dB.
There are five panels in the design, and the outer panels will fold inwards. This will allow you to set the width of the booth. You can open it up to allow more sound in, or close it down for less. It also makes it easy to carry with you.
It has a strong, sturdy build which gives it a heavy-duty feel. It will therefore need a good mic stand to support it. The stand you use should be at least as heavy as the booth.
There are dual mounting clamps to attach it to the mic stand. These are located on the outside of the rear metal panel. They give easy access to the mounting and do not impinge on the internal space available in the booth.
It is fitted with a ⅜-inch mic mount and also has a ⅜ to ⅝ thread adapter. All mounting and assembly hardware is included. A great value for money booth that “does what it says on the tin.” At this price point, it could be one of the Best Portable Vocal Booths you can buy.
- Heavy-duty build with good materials.
- Good sound absorption at an attractive price.
- You will need a good mic stand.
7 Porta-Booth Plus – Best Compact Portable Vocal Booth
A slightly different design for this portable vocal booth from Porta-Booth. The design makes it one of the best on-the-go recording portable vocal booths you can buy. If you travel to do voice-overs or other activities and need a quality recording, this is an interesting option.
This has been made to be folded away and carried with you anywhere. It is effectively a small enclosure that has Auralex foam on the inside. This helps to dampen any external nose.
It uses Velcro to keep it in position when in use. It uses the same Velcro to keep it compact when it is folded away. This is one area where care is needed. When it is in the open position, it is the Velcro that ensures it is stable. Therefore, you need to make sure it is set up properly.
This is another area where there could also be a problem. It measures 6 inches high, 15 inches wide, and 16 inches deep. That is not a great deal of room, especially if you have a tall mic. And it may become even more problematic if you need to hold notes or lyrics inside the booth. However, there is a slightly bigger version available if that is what you need.
Extremely portable, it is durable and easy to use. And if you travel frequently, it is an option to consider. It isn’t, though, the cheapest of solutions.
- Very portable, durable, and lightweight.
- Removes unwanted sounds reasonably well.
- Not a lot of room inside if you have a large mic.
8 Aston Microphones Halo Portable Microphone Reflection Filter – Best Premium Portable Vocal Booth
Let’s finish our list with another interesting design. This one has some clever features to reduce unwanted sounds when recording.
It has a unique style with a dome shape. This offers all-around sound absorption, not only from the sides but also from the top and bottom. The internal foam has textured waveforms to improve sound diffusion. But they do this without dominating the sound of the room.
This booth has a larger surface area than most of its competitors. That will mean a greater depth of acoustic treatment and better linear absorption and diffusion.
It has a quite secure build measuring fifteen inches tall and twenty inches wide. Furthermore, it weighs three pounds, so it is quite easy to carry around with you. Sturdy, but at the same time lightweight.
Easy to use
It is easy to set up, and there is an attachment clip provided to let you mount the shield in the optimal position. It has detachable feet to allow you to use it on a desk or table.
All of which makes it one of the most versatile portable vocal booths you can buy. A nice design with lots of positives; however, it is very expensive when compared with other portable vocal booths.
- Creates good sound isolation from sides, below and above.
- Strong and durable build but lightweight.
- The price will put some off.
Best Portable Vocal Booths Buying Guide
As usual with most things we buy, it will depend on what you need to use it for. Are you looking for a vocal booth for a home studio? Will it be permanently in place, or will you need to take it down and store it?
Will you need to travel with it? And if you do, do you need to record quality voiceovers or commentary while you are away? Plenty of options for its use, all of which might affect your choice.
What will you use it for?
If it is just for vocals, then most portable booths will do the job. However, if you might need to record live instruments, like an acoustic guitar, then the design becomes important. The design will need to allow you to get close enough to the mic with the instrument.
Permanently in your home studio?
If it is a permanent fixture in your home studio, then your main concern will be its performance. You will need good sound absorption and diffusion. The size of your room might play its part.
Do you need a small booth, or do you want a screen that acts as a room divider as well? And will you need to use it on a desk, or is it to be fixed to a mic stand? If you use it on a desk, non-slip feet will be an advantage.
Will you need to take it down?
If it is not a permanent fixture, storage will be an issue. You will need something that folds away easily and won’t take up too much room. But it also needs to be easy to set up.
Will you need to travel with it?
Not everyone records vocals in a home studio. There are recordings made on the road, in hotel bedrooms, and even out in the field. Selecting a booth for those environments will be much harder. Portability will be an issue, especially if you are using external transport facilities like planes or trains.
Not so much an issue with a permanently placed home studio booth. But it could be if you need to keep putting it up and taking it down. Or, of course, if you are traveling.
Something to consider. While many booths are similar in price, some are much more expensive. You will need to consider whether they offer extra features and the potential for a better quality recording. If not, then it will be hard to justify the added cost.
Building a Home Recording Studio?
We can help you find what you need. Check out our in-depth reviews of the Best Microphones For Recording Rap Vocals, the Best Microphones For Recording Vocals, the Best Microphones For Recording Electric Guitar, the Best Live Vocal Mics, the Best Snare Mics, and the Best Drum Mic Kits you can buy in 2023.
Also, have a look at our detailed reviews of the Best USB Audio Interfaces, the Best Audio Interface, the Best Multitrack Recorder, the Best Audio Mixers, the Best Studio Headphones For Home Recording, the Best Portable Audio Recorders, and the Best Microphone Stands currently on the market.
What are the Best Portable Vocal Booths?
As I would only occasionally be using the booth, I would look for an option that is not going to cost too much. I would prefer a booth that attaches to a mic stand as that allows it to be used in different spaces in the recording room. I also would prefer the side flaps to fold in to allow control over the amount of ambient noise.
Therefore, I would choose the …
An excellent booth that does its job very well at a cost-effective price, and therefore, my choice as the best portable vocal booth.
Until next time, let yourself be heard.