AT2020 vs. Blue Yeti for Streaming: Which Is Better?


AT2020 and Blue Yeti are some of the most popular condenser microphones on the market. They both have excellent sound quality and are popular with musicians, YouTubers, and podcasters. But which of them is the best pick for streaming?

AT2020 is the better mic for streaming if you’re a solo act as it has excellent sound quality and picks sound directly in front of the mic. The Blue Yeti is the best choice if streaming in a group setting as it comes with four optimized sound picking modes.

The rest of the article will explore each of these condenser mics’ strengths and shortcomings to help you make an informed choice when buying a streaming microphone.

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Blue Yeti: A Basic Overview

Blue Yeti is a feature-rich condenser microphone that delivers excellent performance while being simple enough to use. It’s one of the best USB mics on the market, a fact that makes it popular with many content creators. It’s worth noting that the Blue Yeti Pro version comes with both USB and XLR output.

The mic comes with a durable three capsule construction that improves voice recording and improves its durability. It also features an integrated headphone amplifier, which is crucial when making vocal recordings such as podcasts or live streaming.

Since it’s a USB mic, the Blue Yeti easily connects to your computer or any USB enabled recording device without drivers or latency issues. While the mic stands over a foot tall, it boasts four solar patterns to facilitate multi-directional sound pickup.

The Blue Yeti’s excellent ability to capture both loud and quiet sounds saves you lengthy post-production adjustment. With a few tweaks, you can customize the mic for live streaming.

Check out this article about whether the Blue Yeti microphone is good for singing here!

Features

A Fancy Retro Design

The Blue Yeti is reminiscent of the large mics for the swinging 50s and comes with a large footprint table stand. Standing about a foot (30.5 cm) tall, the Blue Yeti mic boasts three 14 mm (0.6 in) capsules arranged in a triangular layout that allows for broadcast quality sound when live streaming a game.

The Blue Yeti comprises a pure metallic build that makes it extremely durable and notably heavier than most mics since it comes in at 2.2 pounds (1 kg), including the desktop stand. It’s available in four color choices—blackout, silver, cool grey, and whiteout.

Multiple Polar Patterns

The Blue Yeti is matchless when it comes to sound picks, especially in its pricing range. The tri-capsule mic boasts four polar patterns—cardioid, bidirectional, stereo, and omnidirectional.

The cardioid mode is the most important for gamers and streamers because the microphone picks up sound from the front. However, you can experiment with the various sound pickup settings to establish your sweet spot and awe your audience.

Frequency Response

A microphone’s frequency response offers insights into its sound capturing ability. As is the case with most condenser microphones, the Blue Yeti comes with a 20Hz to 20kHz frequency range. That means it has realistic bass, mid-range, low and upper mids, and high. Since it comes with a maximum sensitivity of 120db, this mic isn’t overly sensitive to ambient sounds.

These specs make the Blue Yeti a perfect choice for streamers because it’ll deliver excellent voice recordings from a room that’s not sound treated.

Volume and Mute Control

Blue Yeti stands a cut above the rest by sporting two physical buttons to give you greater control when live streaming. The mute button lets you cut the mic whenever you need to pause, clear your throat, or talk without recording. The button comes in handy during a live stream as it allows you to take a break.

The volume knob is on the mic’s front side to provide you with a faster way to control your recording volume and monitor the headphone’s amp in real-time.

Find out how to reduce background noise on a Blue Yeti microphone here!

Desktop Mount  

Blue Yeti ships with a hefty and rigid handy desktop mount, saving you the hassle of additional purchase. The mount is adjustable to let you tilt and rotate the mic and orient it in the optimum sound direction. The support is crucial because it makes for a hands-free streaming experience.

Specs

Size4.92 x 4.72 x 11.61 inches (12.5 x 11.9 x 29.5 cm)
Weight2.82 pounds (1.28 kg)
Connector TypeUSB/XLR connector
Polar patternCardioid, Stereo, Omnidirectional, and bidirectional
Frequency response20Hz to 20kHz
Compatible platformsWindows and macOS

Pros of Blue Yeti

  • Fancy retro design and desktop mount
  • Superior sound pickup with four polar setting
  • Three condenser capsules
  • THX-certified manufacturer
  • Two years limited manufacturer warranty
  • Plug and play with optional Blue Sherpa software
  • Headphone jack
  • Gain control
  • Durable full metal body

Cons of Blue Yeti

  • It is heavy and bulky

AT2020: A Basic Overview

AT2020 is a condenser mic with excellent build quality and design. It sports a durable front grille that safeguards the mouthpiece from damage while a separate frame protects the grill.

It boasts an incredible sound quality since it uses Neodymium magnets to pick up sound patterns. Its superior diaphragm makes it ideal for recording loud sounds such as music, speech recording, and live streaming.

The AT2020 comes with a flat frequency report, and the USB version requires no additional controls or switches to operate to let you record vocal pieces and musicals on your PC. However, the pro version features an XLR interface and requires a USB mixer to operate.

The AT2020 is comparatively lighter than the Blue Yeti but comes with high SPL handling and excellent dynamic response when recording loud sounds. Although it has incredible sound quality, the AT2020 only uses the cardioid pattern as it’s built for improved isolation as a primary function.

Features

Build and Design

The AT2020 features a simple yet elegant design, and because it’s only available in black, it has a classy high-end look. The superior finishes on this hardy and durable cast iron microphone make it eye-catching and noticeable.

The capsule in this mic comes with a protective wire mesh to limit the chances of sustaining damage. At 16 mm (0.6 in), the capsule is smaller than the standard sizes but doesn’t compromise sound quality.

Polar Patterns

Since sound isolation is a primary function of the AT2020, the mic only records in cardioid mode. That means you must place the microphone directly in front of you during a live streaming session. This mic delivers the best results when used by one person at a time.

Due to AT2020 excellent sound isolation properties, it’ll deliver excellent recordings when used in an indoor environment with controlled background noise.

The use of cardioid mode makes the AT2020 mic an ideal choice when recording songs and musical instruments.

Frequency Response

Like the Blue Yeti, the At2020 comes with a 20Hz to 20kHz frequency range to deliver realistic sounding low mids, bass, low and upper mids, mid-range, and highs. However, the 90db maximum sensitivity makes the AT2020 less sensitive to sound than Blue Yeti.

However, it would be best to secure the mic to a stand to capture excellent recording while filtering out vibration transmissions. The low-frequency response makes the AT2020 an ideal choice for recording songs.

Headphone Volume Control

Like the Blue Yeti, the AT2020 comes with a knob that allows you to set the headphone’s volume level. The volume rocker lets you hear your voice at different levels through the headphones as you record. Since it offers real-time feedback, the volume control allows you to improve the tone of your voice.

Specs

Size9.6 x 9.6 x 2.6 inches (24.4 x 24.4 x 6.6 cm)
Weight1.8 pounds (0.82 kg)
Connector TypeUSB/XLR connector
Polar patternCardioid
Frequency response20Hz to 20kHz
Compatible platformsWindows and macOS

Pros of AT2020 

  • Sleek, elegant, and arresting design
  • 120° Cardioid capture angle
  • Low dB sensitivity and high dynamic range
  • Extremely versatile and supports various uses
  • Excellent flat response
  • Durable cast iron build
  • Protective wire mesh on the capsule
  • Lightweight

Cons of AT2020 

  • It’s light enough to allow the transmission of vibrations
  • It’s best suited for single person use

Which One Should You Choose?

The AT2020 is a versatile condenser mic that is ideal for a streamer who is a solo act. The mic’s cardioid polar pattern, XLR and USB compatibility, and frequency response allow you to deliver a professional live stream feed.

If streaming in a group setting or could benefit from two or more directional recording, you’re better off with a Blue Yeti microphone.

Conclusion

While the Blue Yeti and AT2020 have many similar features, they’re remarkably different and fill different needs. The AT2020 is best suited for a solo act in a sound-treated room as it uses a cardioid mode.

With its innovative triple capsule, the Blue Yeti is the perfect choice if you often stream in a group setting and often need to vary your sound sources.

Sources

Vinnie

I'm Vinnie, and I'm here to support you to create your own studio at home, whether it’s for photography, recording audio, podcasts, or videos!

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