Not the best option for recording audio with your DSLR but one that know one else has mentioned.

I like having lots of options.

Sure you could record audio from your camera or on Zoom H4N or H1, but here is another option using an XLR mic you could use with a laptop.

Shure USB X2U preamp. $99

My wife volunteered to read some books for our kids school, so I thought I would give it a test.

Basically you connect a standard USB cable to your computer, and then connect the other end in to the preamp and then you can also plugin it in to the headphones for monitoring as well.

It works pretty well. But I have only used it once so I report back later when a I more experience with it.

I do a lot of podcast so this will be a good thing for me to use in the future.

I figure out the turning my sound card input gain structure down almost all the way and hitting the preamp as hard as I could gave the best signal to noise ratio.


  • A similar product is the MXL mic mate. Doesn’t have all the bells and whistles, but it is cheap. I recently used it with a used XLR studio condenser mic for some voice over and it worked flawlessly. Another route is one of the many new dedicated USB condenser mics.

  • Hi Dave, it sounds nice you might also wanna try one of those pop shields to get rid of those subtle puff sounds. I’m no sound guy but I was present at a recording when we tried one out and it made a lot of difference.

  • “options, options, options” 🙂

    So I’ll throw one more out there…

    I have recently started using a Mackie Onyx Blackjack 2×2 USB audio interface. It has two XLR inputs that can also be used as line inputs. Has the most pristine preamps I have ever used. It’s $149.

  • Nice suggestion. Looks like it would be great for ADR or VO work when you want to punch right in w/out using SD cards. Thanks for the tip.

  • Thanks DD. Great option for the budget crowd. I wonder if this can be connected to the iPad with the camera connection kit. There’s got to be an app for that.