Reviewed: Samson Satellite USB Microphone

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Samson are a market leader in workhorse microphones, and they continue to design and produce affordable, consistent and reliable products. Upholding this reputation requires Samson to go where the market is heading, and the Samson Satellite is the perfect example of that.

The Satellite is a three-pattern condenser microphone, connectable via USB and features a headphone output. Designed for broadcasting, podcasting, live streaming, basic recording and impromptu inspiration capture, the Satellite literally stands in a field of it’s own, thanks to the three legs that fold down from the main body of the mic. This makes the Satellite a phenomenal solution for live-streaming and gaming, both for influencers and content creators, or as a podcast and interview microphone. The Satellite looks classy and serves its purpose professionally.

 

The Satellite doesn’t require any drivers, and the handy little mic can begin recording at 24-bit/96kHz instantly via either the included USB cable or lightning cable. This ensures you can have your iPhone or iPad ready with your Satellite for when news or inspiration strikes. Monitor latency-free via the 3.5mm headphone output on the chassis on the Satellite itself, or mute the headphone out and monitor from your computer. The Satellite features a three-colour LED to signify power, clipping and a muted mic, and weighing in at just 0.34kg, it can be stowed away and taken anywhere, ready when you need it to be. The rubber feet that complete the legs isolate sound from table bumps that inevitably happen, especially when podcast guests get passionate, but be weary that at more precarious angles the Satellite is prone to toppling. It can, of course, be used with a universal shock-mount and mic-stand.

 

 

Samson have produced an endlessly usable microphone. The Satellite records high quality audio, and the unit itself can be tweaked to fit a variety of needs and situations. Three sturdy legs fold out from the body of the mic, and can be repositioned individually to allow precise positioning of the mic capsule. The mic responds from 20Hz-20kHz, so podcast guests with even the deepest voices can be captured. Be warned though, that because of the full frequency range of the dual electret condenser, the Satellite is susceptible to capturing bumps, traffic noise, air conditioning and low city rumble, so filtering out this noise could be required after the fact. Ironically, such a broad range microphone may hinder the sound more than help it. There wouldn’t be many scenarios besides capturing foley where 20-40Hz would be required, and the Satellite doesn’t feature a high-pass filter or low cut. The Satellite features three switchable patterns, designed for use with a single speaker in cardioid, two speakers in figure-eight and multiple speakers in the omni position, designed for when the Satellite is positioned in the centre of the table and surrounded by guests and voices.

 

All in all, the Satellite is a great buy for podcasters and live streamers who want improved and professional sound for gaming, streaming and recording. The Satellite captures a broad frequency range, which can hinder it a little bit by letting in excess noise, but that can admittedly be easily filtered out later. The Satellite was designed to be as easy to use as possible, and Samson have achieved that in this little condenser that offers three polar patterns, as well as latency-free monitoring if you need it, as the headphone out can also be muted. The Satellite is light, robust, and malleable both sonically and physically, as well as being fully-compatible with iOS for recording to iPhone or iPad. As an on-the-go mic it’s difficult to beat, as it can serve its purpose whether handheld or quickly placed on a table with its moveable legs as well as being compatible with a smartphone or tablet. The Satellite is as ready to work as you need it to be.

Hits and Misses

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Three-polar patterns for different scenarios

Moveable legs allow for precise positioning

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Broad frequency capture can introduce noise as you would never need sub lows for streaming, gaming and podcasting

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