You don’t need our advice on soft furnishings and which cupboard to climb into but at-home podcasters and streamers could do worse than this list of gear and accessories to build out a functioning DIY studio. Whatever you do, don’t keep those thoughts to yourself.
Designed to bring drama and realism to radio plays and classical concerts, this binaural stereo microphone, disguised as a life-size foam head, has two omnidirectional condenser capsules built into its artificial ears, which record and then recreate sound, so on playback through high-quality headphones, the listener gets the closest reproduction of being in the room as it was recorded, with a phenomenal sense of space and eerily accurate left and right sound separation.
Price: £6,502 | Gear4Music | Thomann
JBL Professional One Series 104-BT
A superb-value monitor set that won’t clutter the desktop, these reference-quality speakers will highlight why it was worth spending the money on a decent recording microphone, pulling out the detail that will elevate your content. Stream via Bluetooth 5.0, playback via Aux, RCA, or TRS connections. They feature a cutting edge coaxial driver and contoured low-frequency woofer with a soft-dome tweeter, for tight frequency response and superior sweet spot. The 60-watt Class D power amplifier distributes 30 watts per speaker for clear, undistorted, loudest-in-class output.
Price: £169 | Amazon | JBL Pro | Currys
Marantz Sound Shield
Ambient noise is the curse of the podcast, but this portable (3kg) recording baffle helps cut it out using five cambered perforated metal panels – three stationary, two foldable for custom shaping – covered in professional-grade EVA acoustic foam, one of the industry’s best materials for filtering vocal reflections, shielding the recording microphone from any hubbub, resulting in cleaner, more focused recording.
Price: £82 | Amazon | Gear4Music
AKG Podcaster Essentials
We’d usually turn up our noses at a tech bundle promising to do the job of a sound engineer but when it’s AKG, we’re listening. Due to land in early June, this Podcaster Essentials kit includes an AKG Lyra microphone to capture up to 24-bit/192kHz audio, closed-back AKG K371 over-ear ‘phones with 50mm drivers and the ‘Lite’ version of Ableton 10 Live. All of which you can get separately but a big box with everything in very much fits our current mood.
Price: £249 | Amazon | Gear4Music
Herman Miller Mirra 2
Designed by Studio 7.5 to use the least material possible without sacrificing performance in the modern work environment, the Mirra 2 office chair is rapidly approaching “iconic” status thanks to the flexible back options that adapt instantly, responding to your slightest movements to fine-tune the fit. Available in either the flexible TriFlex back or the responsive Butterfly back.
Price: From £736 | Herman Miller
Insta360 One R 1-Inch Edition
A refreshing take on the action camera genre, this modular system features separate units for the camera, processor and battery that slot together, enabling you to switch between a class-conquering Leica camera with one-inch sensor, 4K wide-angle or dual lens 360-degree camera – in a couple of seconds. IPX8 waterproof up to a depth of five metres, it has one of the best on-camera image stabilisation systems we’ve seen, can shoot in ultra hi-res 5.3K, and even offers a tiny live-view screen for on-the-go editing.
Price: £519 | Amazon | Insta360 | Apple
RØDE NT-USB Mini
For studio-quality recording straight to your computer without fuss, this 142mm-tall USB microphone incorporates a built-in headphone amp, high-quality condenser capsule with RF shielding for a clear, warm presence and directional cardioid pickup pattern (which helps minimise the reverberations of the room). With a smooth frequency response and built-in pop filter, even the most fevered political ranting will remain plosive free. With a detachable magnetic desk stand and integrated 360-degree swing mount, you can position the mic upright, upside down or whatever angle you need.
Price: £99 | Amazon | Rode | Andertons
Intuitive enough for total beginners with enough features for the seasoned professional, this classy production studio is all you need, until you hit the big time. To start, there’s four microphone channels with automatic level setting and one-touch recording to a microSD card. Eight programmable sound-effect pads mean that adding your favourite jingles or music – or, heaven forbid, canned laughter – is a button-press away, and you can even record direct to a pad or drag and drop files from your computer. It can also connect to a remote source for OB chats via Bluetooth, all tweaked to perfection with class A preamps for minimal distortion and maximum quality.
Price: £562 | Amazon | Rode | Gear4Music
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