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Discussion Starter #1
I have a question and I don't know where to put it in the form. We have a independent USB camera that we can put above our television. I then plug that camera into a laptop and we get great video for family chats from the couch with friends on Zoom. However the audio on the USB camera is really designed for being right up close close to a computer monitor. I need suggestions on a microphone that could be plugged into the laptop or that would work wirelessly with the laptop but would be a area microphone IE catch the audio in the room not just from an individual sitting right up close next to it.

I have no idea what to look for or how to shop for that. Any suggestions ideas would be greatly appreciated.
 

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In all honesty, your question would be best answered in the Community for the brand of laptop you have. For example, if it's a Lenovo computer, you'd go here.

We do have some Zoom discussions going in Home Theater Computers, so I'm moving you there.

Not knowing your computer or OS, I can't tell you how its audio jack is configured. Some can be changed in WIndows' Control Panel, some are mechanical and a little more difficult to get to accept a microphone. The easiest solution is to get a powered USB microphone, then go into WIndows Sound Settings and switch from the camera's microphone to the USB microphone. I do that with my laptop as I work in professional audio and the microphone and interface I use is worlds better than the computer's microphone
 

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Ahh well not looking for tech support. Looking for product recommendations for an external mic that has a more wide area. Usb or normal red laptop mic jack just looking for product ideas. I do t know how to shop for this.
 

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I get that, but most computer forums are filled with just this kind of information, specific to the line of computers being discussed. Better recommendations will come from people who have the same computer as you.

Again, without knowing the make or model of your laptop, nobody can make anything other than a broadly general USB microphone recommendation. "Red laptop jack" doesn't tell me anything about its pinouts or configuration abilities. For that matter, I don't know if your OS is Windows or Mac. It makes a difference. Since you don't wish to divulge any of that information, we'll dispense with any hardwired microphone recommendations.

As far as finding one goes, just go to someplace such as Amazon or shop.google.com and enter "USB Microphone." Find one with the specs you desire at a price point you can live with as well as compatibility with your operating system.

You'll need a different microphone if it's just you sitting at a desk than you will for several people on a sofa. The comments that are usually tacked on to product listings will give you some sort of idea how the product is being used and if it was a successful purchase.

Good luck.
 

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No you don't get it. All computers have the same sort of mic jack. They all have USB. It has nothing to do with the computer.

My question is specific to a family room av setup. Not just any amazon mic that is supposed to sit on your desk 2' from you
 

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No you don't get it. All computers have the same sort of mic jack.
No, they don't. Pinouts are different between brands. Some are mechanical. Some are logic controlled. You can plug anything into my Dell and Windows will ask what it is and configure the jack accordingly. With my Lenovo laptop, a microphone has to be wired a certain way or it won't work and NO line-in is supported at all.

As for USB, there are several different flavors. The biggest issue is OS. I have a closet full of USB hardware that'll work on a PC, but not on a Mac. Some of it will work with Windows 7, but nothing after that. Some will work on Windows 10, but nothing prior. It does make a difference.
 

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I'd suggest an MXL AC-404. I've purchased more than a couple for use by researchers who do interviews and they sound pretty good, are low profile and should do a good job of picking up the room and the people in it.

If you want a better sound quality and more flexibility (more patterns - cardioid, omni, figure 8), I'd get a Yeti. They're much bigger though and more expensive. Have purchased more than a couple of these as well.

MXL Conference Mic

Yeti
 
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