More people are utilizing microphones now than ever before thanks to the growth of streaming. The shift to remote work in recent years. As a result, several businesses are trying to enter the market, and reputable gaming accessory producer SteelSeries is the most recent one. Although the business is arguably best known for its headsets. The $180 Alias and $330 Alias Pro gaming microphones, which are currently available, may change that image.
Upfront I’ll be the first to say that while I don’t stream. I do frequently use a microphone for podcasts and regular Dungeons & Dragons sessions on Discord. I also discovered myself participating in a never-ending series of online meetings using Zoom, Google Meet, Microsoft Teams, WebEx. And whatever else businesses wish to promote during the epidemic, like so many others. It’s a pain in the ass, even in 2023.
The Elgato Wave:3 has been my go-to microphone for the past few years. I adore it for its superior audio and sturdy construction. However, in practice it has not always been a dream; oddly enough, I was never able to get it to function correctly with USB headsets, not even ones built by Corsair. The company that owns it. Even with the Elgato software loaded, moving between apps wasn’t always easy. I have begun a lot of meetings with my computer sending sound to the incorrect device. Which is typically the terrible internal laptop microphone.
SteelSeries’ GG software, which seamlessly integrates with all SteelSeries hardware, aims to simplify all of that. I plugged in the Alias, and it was immediately identify; I didn’t need to change any settings on my system or in any apps. Called a buddy on Messenger in a matter of seconds, and Discord adjusted itself immediately as well. I would anticipate that audio software in 2023 should simply function, and GG meets the bill. You don’t need to be a coder to make your setup seem attractive because it has tons of built-in customization for features like lighting. Additionally it allows you to adjust levels program by program. And has several outputs so that what your stream hears and what you hear on your end might differ.
Simply said, it’s a good amount of control that enables experts (as well as beginners) to customize their stream to their preferences.
Of course, reliable software would be useless without the supporting hardware. And the Alias and Alias Pro are excellent, gorgeous desk microphones. They are both oblong tablets that are hold in a ring-shape stand by elastic strings. Both variants of the Alias come with a clip to connect it to your current arm, or you can buy one from SteelSeries. It is simple to detach and mount on a boom arm.
The entry-level Alias has a volume slider and mute button directly on its front but the Pro uses the bundled mixer. Which needs external power (it comes with an AC adaptor), and includes those functions.
Two knobs on the mixer may be adjust using the GG software, and there are two buttons for muting the audio from the headset and microphone. (It is quite pleasant to push them.) The XLR connector in the back, which gives the Pro its moniker, is the largest difference, though. Although most users won’t require that kind of high-end connectivity, pros wishing to incorporate a specialized gaming microphone into their arsenal will value it. Additionally, the mixer has two USB connections, allowing for simultaneous PC streaming.
I stayed with the normal Alias, which connects to your system using USB-C, because I’m not a professional audio guy. Additionally it features a single headphone connection for connecting a headset. And I valued the mic stand’s design for neatly organizing the wires. The microphone will begin operating as soon as you plug it in; you’ll know because the front of the microphone has LED lights that displays your levels.
You know you’re clipping when the solitary bar of lights rises into the red. There is no doubt whatsoever as to the status of your recording since when the mic is muted, a large red “X” is visible on the surface.
My audio was loud and clear when I chatted with family and friends using different chat apps. However one podcasting friend thought I occasionally sounded a little wrong, probably. Because I was too near to the microphone. I had a good voice from a reasonable distance. Through headphones, I found the audio sounded excellent and was comparable to the Elgato Wave: 3’s audio. But somewhat more sensitive since it occasionally picked up background noises like my typing. When I use a mechanical deck, this doesn’t happen often, but in this instance it was my laptop’s softer membrane keyboard. If you have the room, you may simply spread the devices further apart to lessen the effect.
Overall, I believe it to be a useful piece of gear to have on my desk; it’s one of those extras that inspires enthusiasm for recording streams, podcasts. And other types of media. Although you don’t need high-quality tools to start producing. The SteelSeries Alias is one of those that, since it’s so enjoyable to use, compels you to do so.
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