Last week I was given the Samson C01U Desktop USB Studio Condenser Microphone for creating better video reviews and voice overs.
Presentation / Look: 7 / 10
This microphone look very nice sitting on a computer desk. It definitely gives the ‘expensive mic’ presentation and looks great in front of you and others around you. It is meant to be mounted on a tripod or spider mount which limits its portability. It feels very weird holding it since that is beyond its purpose. It could use some color however. It looks like a boring metal pickle. No patterns or other shades of gray are visible other than the green LED light in the front.
Quality 9 / 10:
The voice quality is great in terms of close up audio recording. I found that being between 6 inches and 1 foot is the perfect distance to get quality sound. For online voice calls such as Skype, I have it about 1.5 feet away and it still sounds great to those listening. When farther than 2 feet, some background noise starts to enter in the microphone and the quality sounds like a regular USB microphone.
If you want this microphone solely for basic audio capture, then this microphone does the job perfectly. However, compared to other great recording devices, Samson could have done a better job by including other major features such as a headphone jack for listening while recording. The LED in the front does nothing at all. Other than indicate that the product is on, it just stays green and does not notify of anything else. Usually, I would think the LED light turns red when audio gets a bit loud like their Go Mic.
Specifications / Features:
- Plug in and start recording. No extra gear needed.
- 19mm diaphragm
- Cardioid pickup pattern
- 16-bit, 44.1/48kHz resolution
- Smooth, flat frequency response
- Bundled with Cakewalk® Sonar LE music production software
- Frequency Response: 20 – 18000 HZ
- Polar pattern: Hyper cardioid
- Element type: Electret condenser type
- Diaphragm thickness: 3 microns
- SPL: 136 dB Max.
- Dimensions (H x W x D): 7 x 2.125 x 2.125 inches (180 x 54 x 54 mm)
- Weight: 1.06 lbs. (.48 kg)
- Simple to setup. Just plug in and record.
- Good sound quality for standard recording range (~1 foot).
- Comes with Samson SoftPre and Cakewalk Sonar LE
- Uses standard USB Printer Port.
- Color is ugly. Just a grey pickle.
- Absolutely no other features other than the basics.
Conclusion 8 / 10
After testing this product with Skype calls and doing voice-over commentaries, the Samson C01U has fulfilled my needs for a good quality audio recording device. All of its basic necessities were accomplished and produces great audio. It could have more additional features than just listening to my voice such as loud noise LED notification or a headphone jack for listening, but I may just be too picky. Overall, it’s a great microphone for it’s inexpensive price.