The $99 AKG Ara microphone gives you pro-level sound without the pricetag for all your recording needs

Woman singing and playing guitar with the AKG Ara
(Image credit: AKG)

The foundation for all successful audio projects begin with a great sound setup. Whether you're recording a podcast, laying down a track for your song, live streaming to your audience, or presenting on a video call, how it sounds matters to the listener.

Without crisp, clear, intelligible sound, your work won't be the best it can be.

Enter the AKG Ara, a two-pattern USB condenser microphone built for streaming, recording and capturing audio at a 24-bit, 96kHz resolution for crystal-clear speech clarity and stunning vocal and instrument tracks, no matter your medium, with the ability to handle up to 120 dB max SPL.  

This is exactly the type of technology you want to have whether you’re hosting a podcast, recording vocals for the next radio hit, gaming or upgrading your audio setup for presentations and Zoom meetings.

Perhaps even more appealing? The $99 price tag for a compact mic that delivers pro-level results at a fraction of the cost, making it enticing for novices and professionals alike. 

AKG mics are go-to classics in recording studios and stages around the world, and have been for more than 70 years. Now they’re fully accessible to podcasters, vloggers, gamers and musicians looking for superior, high fidelity sound from the convenience and ease of USB connectivity to their personal devices. 

Ara is built with dual pickup patterns that let you focus on a single voice or instrument… or every voice in the room. Easily switch between patterns to suit your needs: The directional Front (cardioid) pattern can focus on sound directly in front of the mic while rejecting sound from other sides, or use the Front + Back (omni) pattern to pick up sounds all around the mic, such as a recording interviews with multiple speakers or a band performing as a group.

You can also monitor sound in real time with the 3.5mm stereo headphone jack for zero-latency monitoring. With a set of headphones (choose your favorites) you can hear exactly what the mic is picking up and connect to your computer to add backing tracks to mix in the live sound, which is great for musicians or vocalists. 

The Ara has a modern, contemporary design with a compact, durable metal body that can be taken and plugged in essentially anywhere. It has wide compatibility with Mac and Windows computers, games consoles, and Android and iOS devices via USB. 

It has easily accessible front-of-mic controls like headphone volume control, microphone mute with LED indicator and a pattern selector puts you in easy control of the sound. 

The Ara is extremely portable and compact. It comes with an integrated desktop base stand, which can be unscrewed and attached to a standard microphone stand or desktop boom arm.

Finally, better sound and quality recordings are nothing without how they are eventually mixed together, the Ara comes with a free subscription to Ableton Live 11 Lite, software that helps artist and sound mixers compose, record, arrange, mix, and master for unlimited creativity in adding in effects and instruments and creating new sounds.