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The Dead Hand Journal



Sometimes you just need a product to work.

That was the case for me last week when I needed a new microphone for the voiceover on Profit Rank's new video sales presentation. I'm not an audio engineer, and I didn't want to become one last week. I just wanted a microphone that would give me high-quality sound with a minimum of configuration and installation hassles.

Samson Audio's Q1U Dynamic USB Microphone fit the bill in spades. Unlike most PC microphones, this one bypasses the audio card and connects through your USB port. There are no drivers to install; everything you need is contained in the unit's firmware. As a result, you get:

  • No jack-management hassles. Need an extra mike? Find (or make) another USB port.
  • Zero inductive noise. The mike's ADC is right in the unit—though you wouldn't know by looking at it—so you can kiss that 60-hz whine goodbye, no matter how long your cable run is.
  • Amazing sound! The Q1U's tight cardioid pickup sounds clear as a bell, even if you don't lock yourself in a sound-proofed closet.

If I were setting up a home audio studio—admittedly, a long shot—I think USB would be the clear way to go, and I would certainly look first at the Q1U and Samson's other USB mikes and condensers. Many things in life require deep thought, but getting microphones to work shouldn't have to be on that list.


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