Blue, an audio production company that produces USB microphones like the Yeti, Snowball, and Nessie, has just added another cutely named product to its USB microphone line: the Raspberry. This desktop microphone is similar to the others, with 24 bit / 48kHz audio, and PC and Mac compatibility via USB, but this model is also meant to be portable and super easy to use with iOS on your iPhone or iPad.
In a world where every celebrity, neighbor, media friend, and lover have their own podcast, the demand for recording devices for people who have little audio production experience is high. Blue helps out here with an included Mini USB to Lightning cable and requires no app to use, so you can just plug it right into an iPhone or personal computer without having to install anything.
Blue microphones are always kind of cool-looking, and Raspberry has a neat red and silver thing going, although it’s mostly comprised of a lightweight plastic like you get from cheaper-end microphones. I think the Raspberry looks great on my desk, and it also takes up very little space.
The included stand is neat and adds to Raspberry’s portability. There are shock-absorber feet which minimize rumbling and vibrations in the recording for the most part — a big issue for any microphone that’s standing on your desk. I should note this is not a handheld mic, and is designed to be used on a stand. The stand rotates and folds up over the mic so it can fit into the provided pouch. You can also unscrew the mic off the stand and attach it to a one-fourth-inch thread you find on most tripods or mic stands.
As for monitoring, there is an one-eighth-inch output jack, and adjustable headphone volume and gain knobs on the sides. The green light on the front turns red when clipping occurs, so that’s helpful. The Raspberry is cardioid only and can be used at a table top distance or up close.
The $199 price is a bit high for what I consider a back-up USB microphone for on-the-go use, and it’s more expensive than a Yeti. But if what you need is a portable microphone with virtually no setup time and that can plug into your phone, the Raspberry is not a bad choice.
I recorded the pre-roll ad (0:00-1:30) for Ctrl-Walt-Delete this week with the Blue Raspberry. Here’s what that sounds like:
Don’t forget to use a pop filter!