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Foam Turns Poor Microphone into High End Microphone

I’ve been creating products with audio and video for quite a while. Audio was a big deal about 8 years ago. You have to remember, most people still had slow internet speeds so streaming audio was difficult for most.

Different players were developed as well as different methods of steaming audio from your website. But…..if you had audio on your site you were a player!

Microphone Determines Audio Quality

One of the problems was creating an audio file that had good quality. In other words, the voice or music sounded clear and vibrant. Most microphones designed for computers were of poor quality, there was a lot of hiss, pops and other ambient noises. Nonetheless, audio on your website was a good thing.

Internet speeds started getting faster and as a result suddenly video became a reality for most webmasters. Whether the video was from a camcorder or from a software program such as Camtasia, quality increased along with internet speeds.

One of the problems throughout has been the quality of the audio. To get good quality, clear audio, you needed to spend a couple hundred dollars for a studio quality microphone. The audio produced from these expensive devices is just awesome and makes all the difference in the world when producing videos or audios…. especially those that are used in learning products.

You really don’t have to spend 200 or 300 dollars on a microphone. Today, you can pick up a set of Logitech headphones with attached microphone and get great quality audio. The microphone often times has noise cancelling built in and will produce audio quality that is acceptable for most uses.

Turn Cheap Microphone into High Quality Recording Mic

I picked up a Logitech ClearChat Comfort USB headphone/microphone set up and it works great. I might add that sometimes you need to try these units to make sure it will work with your computer and operating system, for one add reason or another you’ll find that a headset/microphone combo just won’t work. Rather than spend all kinds of time trying to figure it out…. just go and try another one. Of course you should make sure you can return the item if it doesn’t work…. BestBuy, Raido Shack and others have flexible return policies.

You can make the audio even better by following the simple tricks I outline below. You can make your $30 microphone/headphone sound like a $500 studio microphone.

What you want to do is find a piece of closed cell foam, the kind that is used in furniture, put a slice in the foam and slide the end of the microphone over the foam. It will mute the audio to some degree, cuts out almost all background noises and takes the hiss, pops and cracks out of a cheap microphone. You might have to play around with different types and sizes of foam but I’ve found that a simply 2 inch by 3 inch piece of phone slipped over the end of a microphone works miracles. I’ve tried this on several different microphones and the difference is just amazing. It makes the cheapest microphones sound good.

Today’s Cheap Mic’s Are Very Sensitive

Often times the microphones that come with headphones today are so sensitive they pick up noise from all over, your computer fan, birds outside, cars and trucks …they all add up to cause the audio to sound very primitive.

The foam over the microphone will cause those ambient outside noises to either disappear completely or nicely muted. I’ve used the microphone setup with phone and had a radio playing in the background, the radio didn’t show up at all on the recording. Each situation is different, however, the foam covering will make a big difference when doing screen capture videos and stand alone audios.

Below are some images of the foam and microphone. You can see that it doesn’t have to be anything fancy. In fact, we had an old couch that was getting thrown out. I cut out a big hunk of foam and use it all the time for a microphone that records awesome audio. My family laughs at me, but it works!

microphone covered with foam

Just stick some foam over the end of the microphone.


High quality microphone from foam cover


I just happened upon this little microphone trick. You can pick some foam at most Walmarts or Upolstery shops. As you can see from the image below, I found a friend that was getting rid of an old couch. I grabbed a knife and chopped off a big piece of the phone and have used it for the last 2 years. It works perfectly!

image of old couch with foam for covering the microphone