Do you have plans of starting a podcast? Are you caught in a price dilemma when choosing your first microphone?
Well, do not be alarmed.
It happens to anyone, especially if you do not have any prior knowledge about microphones.
A good example is when choosing between the Blue Snowball and Blue Snowball Ice.
Both of these microphones are from the same company called Blue designs.
The company is well recognized for its superior sound quality microphones that are of reasonable prices.
The two mic models are subsequent versions from the same series.
Though they may appear to be identical, they have subtle differences that could mean a lot to anyone looking to get a budget-friendly microphone.
To help you make the right purchasing decision, we are going to look at the features that make up these microphones in-depth.
We will compare them and help you find out which is the better of the two. However, before we get started, let us look at what each microphone has to offer.
The Blue Snowball microphone is well for producing accurate sounds without any distortions thanks to its duel condenser capsules.
It is the perfect option for any user that wants to start on podcasting, live-streaming, or voiceover work.
The microphone has an appealing plug-and-play feature that rids of the need of software drivers when using with your pc or mac.
Immediately you connect it to your computer, it will appear as one of the sources of the sound input.
The mic is monophonic. Meaning, you can only record single audio sources.
It may not be the best option if you intend to capture multi-personal interviews that require more than one microphone.
There are other affordable mic options you can use for the task.
Still, it is competent enough to deserve the attention of every upcoming podcaster that requires an affordable microphone.
The Snowball Ice is a relatively newer build of the original snowball model.
Rather than adding more unique features, it got rid of some of the old ones, such as the switchable -10dB pad and an omnidirectional capsule.
It can, therefore, only pick sounds in a Cardioid polar pattern, meaning that it only captures sound from the front.
This move made it possible for the company to reduce the overall retail price of the microphone. The microphone has a flashy design.
Though it has a plastic body, it is very sturdy and durable. It does not have any protruding buttons or switches. It only has a USB port at the back.
Unlike the expensive USB microphones, the snowball ice does not have a mute button, microphone controls to adjust the gains and pickup pattern, and an in-built monitoring system.
The most crucial part that makes up the budget is the condenser.
The microphone is an impressive upgrade from the in-built mics you will find in most laptops.
It is incredibly affordable and delivers crisp and clear audio.
It is best for laying down tracks for music projects or video narrations. The mic is effortless to use since you only need to plug it into your Mac or PC.
The sound quality it delivers is incomparable to that of similar microphones of the same price point.
Similarities and Differences between Blue Snowball and Snowball Ice
Everyone has their preference when it comes to features, design, and performance of a microphone.
By comparing the attributes of each mic, you can tell which model outscores the other, giving you a good idea of which model best suits your needs.
|Blue Snowball||Snowball Ice|
|Sample Rate||44.1 kHz||44.1 kHz|
|Dimension||325 mm sphere||325 mm sphere|
|Compatible||Windows (7,8,10) and Mac||Windows (7,8,10) and Mac|
|Cost||Low to medium||low|
|Weight||460 g||460 g|
|Material||High- quality plastic||High-quality plastic|
|Polar Patterns||Omnidirectional, cardioid, Cardioid with -10dB||Cardioid|
|Outputs||USB 2.0 (3.0 backwards), USB mini B||USB 2.0 (3.0 backwards)|
- Design and Build Quality
Both mics are round, giving them a snowball look. They come with a stand that looks like a small tripod. The outer body of the microphone is plastic, not metal.
However, it is of good quality and highly durable. The tripods have rubber grips that give each leg an added measure of stability.
Both microphones have a logo at the front that gives it a 60s old-school vintage look.
The only difference in the design is that the Blue Snowball offers six different color choices while the Snowball Ice offers only two colors, black and white.
Both microphones deliver a stellar sound quality that is incomparable to other mics within the same price range.
You do not necessarily have to speak while close-up to the microphone to get a good reading.
The mic can capture your sound clearly if you speak from a distance of 3 to 7 inches away.
While the mics may look the same from the front, there is a difference when you look at their back.
The Blue Snowball has a switch that is absent in the Snowball Ice.
The switch helps to change the polar patterns. Polar patterns describe how well a microphone can hear sounds coming from different directions.
The Blue Snowball has three types of polar patterns: cardioid, omnidirectional, and cardioid with -10dB pad. The most common for recording is cardioid, of which the Snowball Ice supports.
You can use the cardioid with -10dB pad setting to capture loud sounds. However, it has reduced sensitivity.
The omnidirectional mode, on the other hand, captures sounds from all directions, making it ideal for skype calls, live recordings, and multi-person podcasts.
However, it is the least used mode.
Blue Snowball is more versatile than Snowball Ice since it offers you several options to choose from, giving you a better recording experience.
Even though you may not use all the modes, the flexibility to choose is an added advantage to a musician.
You can find both mics at very affordable prices. However, it is the Snowball Ice that has the lowest cost of the two.
The price drop is mainly due to the reduction in features. Still, Blue prides itself on providing a microphone that is cheap but can always offer studio-quality sounds.
Both Microphones are perfect basic level entry mics since they are inexpensive and deliver a good sound quality.
With a decent build and design and offering you excellent value for money, you will not find any other mics at such a price offering similar quality.