Due to the global pandemic and the lock-down, companies that provide stay at home solutions have flourished. Thus, a handy quality microphone is now a must have item. From voice calls, streaming, remote work, vocal recording, YouTube videos, you really need something reliable to get he job done. Today, we are looking at a very affordable plug and play condenser mic from TONOR. It promises versatility and great sound quality without breaking the bank.

First about TONOR

TONOR states that they provide the best solution for upcoming artists, creative stars that are waiting to come out, waiting to be noticed. TONOR allows them to own high-quality professional audio recording devices without pinching the wallet. They take pride in creating the perfect balance by designing products that provide a superior sound quality.

 

Prices and Availability

 

It retails for $39.99 / £39.99 which is very attractive since it comes with a tripod, shock mount, pop filter and foam cover. No wonder it’s the best seller in Amazon’s ranks.

 

Presentation and Specification

 

* Courtesy of their website.

  • TC-777 comes with driver-free and plug-and-play design, installing USB microphone is a breeze.
  • High-quality cardioid mic capsule inside provides reliable and accurate pickup.
  • The microphone stand features a 3-legged base that retracts and folds up easily.
  • All-in-one Microphone set: microphone with power cord, tripod desk stand with folding feet, mini shock mount, pop filter, manual and TONOR service card. Let you get everything done at once, no need to worry about buying accessories.

 

 

Visual Inspection

 

The microphone comes in a minimalist all black box with a visual depiction of the product on the front. The two years warranty sticker is present in the upper right corner.

This presents the main specs of the mic and it indicates what’s the sound capture pattern. Cardioid is the most common directional polar pattern, with the highest sensitivity to sound coming in from directly in front of the microphone capsule at 0º. So, no sound is recorded that comes directly from behind (180º), and a reduced sensitivity to sound coming in from the sides (90º/270º).

Taking the lid off, we discover how the mic and accessories are nested safely in the foam.

You get the following items besides the TC-777 USB microphone:

1x Metal tripod with rubber ends
1x Shock mount that can be adjusted up to 180º
1x Foam mic cover
1x Detachable pop filter
1x Warranty card
1x Instructions manual

Here is the TONOR TC-777 all ready to be plugged in. It has a small footprint barely under 10″ tall and with the tripod in use it doesn’t take more than 6″ in diameter.

To grasp the full size perspective, here it is next to a BLUE Yeti microphone towering over it and next to a juice can.

Now let’s explore it further. The shock mount uses this rubber bands to remove any vibration and noise interference.

Of course, you can remove the mic altogether if you want to use in a different boom arm for example.

Then the metal tripod is sturdy and even has rubber covers at each end to further minimise any vibration and not to move on most surfaces. Also the pivot offer up to 180º adjustment. The USB cable measures 1.5 meters in length.

You can remove the foam mic cover as well. Underneath here is the condenser cardioid microphone. Make sure you orientate this towards your face and keep at between 15-30 cm for optimum sound capture.

Lastly, the pop filter measures like 4″ in diameter and can be easily adjusted to almost any angle.

Here is a video that covers the unboxing and a quick walkaround.

 

Testing methodology

 

* Record some sound samples in Adobe Premier Pro CC without changing any sound settings nor applying effects/adjustments.
* Ambient room noise is at 30 dB/a.
* Use it for some competitive gameplay to communicate with other players.
* Compare the sound recordings quality it with another popular USB condenser microphone, the BLUE Yeti.

Hardware used:

– CPU:AMD Ryzen 3 3300x AM4
– CPU Cooler:Asetek 645LT 92mm AIO
– Motherboard:ASUS ROG STRIX B550-i Gaming ITX
– RAM:16GB DDR4 Crucial Ballistix MAX RGB 4000 MHz CL18
– Boot SSD: Crucial P2 500GB M.2 NVMe
– Graphics card: ASUS ROG STRIX GTX1080 A8G
– PSU: Corsair SF750 SFX Platinum
– Custom PSU cable kit: pslatecustoms
– Case: Dan A4-SFX V4.1
– Case/AIO fans: Noctua NF-A9x14 HS-PWM chromax.black

Software:

OS: Windows 10 Pro x64 Version 2004
Recording Software: Adobe Premier Pro CC 2019 v13

 

Sound Samples and Analysis

 

Here is an untouched sound sample recording from the TONOR TC-777 vs my daily driver the BLUE YETI.

At first glance, as you can tell almost no difference in quality between both microphones and mind you the Blue Yeti is almost 4 times the price.

I have used it for over a week to replace my Blue Yeti as my daily driver and so far I can’t tell any major difference in sound quality. Yes, the Blue Yeti has more tweaking options and fine adjustments built-in, but these can be done anyway via software. But at core, regarding recording sound quality, the TONOR TC-777 delivers without any doubts.

Being plug and play makes everything so easy. Then that Cardioid pickup pattern makes sure it suppresses unwanted background noise as long as you orientate it towards the source of the sound and place it between 15 to 30 cm.

Another thing I have discovered is the fact that the shock mount can be unscrewed and attached to a boom stand with 5/8″ thread.

The feedback I got over the gameplay session was really good, no problems as per the assessments from other players.

Depending on your needs, like any microphone it needs an extra help in volume boost and sound gains because it sacrifices noise sensibility in favour of no background noise which is a good one in my book. As mentioned before this is no problem since most requirements can be tweaked via software, like Adobe Audacity for example.

 

Conclusion

 

This microphone is the real deal, it pleasantly surprised me with its overall package offering. It ticks all the main requirements from out of the box sound recording quality, versatility, pricing and accessory list. No wonder it’s on Amazon’s most sold item in this category. Don’t get this for professional usage but for everything else, it’s a must buy since at this price range it has no rival!

The good:

+ Superb and crisp sound quality recording straight out of the box
+ Comes with everything you need, hassle free
+ Excellent pricing
+ Small footprint
+ 2 Years Warranty

The bad:

– No ON/OFF button
– Like most microphones in this price range, it needs sound tweaking for perfect sound output
– Maybe offer more colour options

Glob3trotters “Editor’s Choice” Award – 5 out of 5

GG

Many thanks to TONOR for supplying us with this sample !

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