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Fifine T669 Condenser Microphone Kit
The T669 Fifine Microphone comes with everything pictured. Is it a good value for the money? Read on and find out.
I HATE bad sound quality.
I don’t know if my ears are more sensitive than other people, but when I hear bad audio, my ear skin crawls.
It’s especially bad with poorly recorded videos and streaming content. It’s easy to tell when a content producer has no regard for their production values.
People will take you more seriously if you sound good. Never mind the words you say, or even how you say them, but HOW THEY SOUND makes a huge difference.
I wanted a good microphone, not just to sound good, but to look cool too. You’ve seen people on YouTube and Twitch using these big microphones at the end of boom arms, as well as podcasters like Joe Rogan.
But good quality audio equipment can be expensive. So my goal became this: I wanted to sound great and not break the bank doing it.
So, I bought the Fifine T669 metal condenser recording microphone bundle to use with my remote work. Here are my experiences using it as a top notch remote work tool.
Unboxing & First Impressions
The box is very sturdy, and everything in the kit was securely arranged. Sorry I didn’t get a photo of everything still fresh in the box. Next time. But you can imagine, I hope.
The kit includes the microphone itself, a boom arm that can clamp to a desk or table, a USB cable, a windscreen for the mic, a pop filter with flexible gooseneck, and a shock mount that screws into the end of the boom arm. All of the components are of high quality, especially the mic itself.
And let’s talk about that mic. Nothing cheap about it, despite its reasonable price. It’s made of metal and has a nice heft to it when holding it in your hand that inspires confidence. It’s even available in three colors: black, blue and pink.
The mic has a front control knob labeled ‘volume’ but you should really think of this knob as a gain control. More gain, more signal to your PC. Also more noise, but we’ll get to that later.
As for connectivity, microphones come in two basic flavors these days, USB and XLR. A USB mic like this Fifine connects like any other USB device to nearly any computer. I use a homemade Linux PC for most of my remote work and it recognized the mic flawlessly when I plugged in the included USB cable. I imagine a Windows PC or a laptop Mac would be just as easy. (XLR is a professional standard that is beyond the scope of what I’m writing about here, plus they may require additional equipment like a powered mixer with phantom power to function).
Setting up the boom arm on my desk was a breeze, and the kit contains a quick start guide to help you get going quickly. If necessary, the mic can be mounted to a tripod stand to fit on a desk (sold separately) if you don’t want or need a boom arm.
The only thing I wish was included was some form of cable management. The USB cable can get in the way, especially if you’re moving the boom arm around a lot, so I rigged up some black velcro tape to secure the cable to the arm and keep it out of the way when the arm moves. You could probably get some from your local Dollar Store or good ol’ Amazon Prime. (shameless affiliate plug)
Features & Technical Specifications
The Fifine T-669 uses a cardioid polar pickup pattern, which basically means that it picks up sound from the front and sides while rejecting sound from its rear. This is good for speaking directly into the front face of the mic and for reducing noise in other directions.
Setup was as simple as plugging in the included USB cable to the mic and the other end into my computer. A quick test using Audacity (free download) confirmed the mic was functional.
Here are some specifications for the technically inclined (if that’s you, we salute you!):
Polar Pattern: Cardioid
Frequency Response: 20-20kHzSensitivity-34dÂ±30% (at 1kHz)S/N Ratio78dB
Sensitivity: -34dÂ±30% (at 1kHz)
Signal to Noise Ratio: 78dB
Power Supply: 5V USB power
Testing in Different Scenarios
Voice Calls & Meetings
I did a couple of Zoom calls using the Fifine and I was quite pleased with the performance. My voice came through sharp and clear, and really stood out from the other folks in the meeting who were just using webcams and built-in PC mics. I sounded like a pro.
Here’s a simple sample recorded with Audacity. No EQ or compression or effects used, just flat:
My office room is fairly quiet, with only the slightest bit of noise from my PC case fans nearby. In a typical web meeting, I highly doubt such noise would be noticeable, but it would be a good idea to test the mic in your own workspace before doing a voice call just to eliminate any embarrassing noisy issues.
Of course, if you really had to, you could use it with your work laptop and move to the quietest room you can find and do your recording that way.
Depending on the software you use, such as Speechify, this microphone will work well for voice overs. I tested it with Audacity to make simple .wav files, and it sounded great.
Podcasting, Gaming, or Video Creation
I haven’t used this mic for videos yet, although I am planning on starting a YouTube channel soon and this mic will be prominently featured. Stay tuned for that.
Same for podcasts or livecasting your gaming sessions. I expect it to do just fine as a podcast microphone, although I imagine a headset might be more practical for a gaming microphone.
Ambient Noise & Sound Isolation
If you’ve never used a microphone like this before, there are things you should know.
First, it is EXTREMELY sensitive. It can pick up background noise from my computer’s fans and even from my ceiling fan in my office. It’s possible to minimize this with software and/or modifying your room with sound-absorbing materials if you need that level of quiet.
Second, be careful not to record with too much gain, or else your voice will sound noisy and distorted. Back off on the volume knob mounted in front.
Comparison with Other Microphones
I haven’t used any other microphones like this before, so I can’t compare the Fifine microphone to those, but I can say that this mic is a huge improvement over using a webcam microphone, or any built-in PC mic. It sounds so much better. You’ll never sound like you’re speaking from the bottom of a well with a condenser microphone like this.
There’s a debate over whether a USB microphone can match the quality of an XLR microphone, which is used in professional settings. But for most remote workers who don’t work in a professional audio environment, a good USB is more than enough.
Pros & Cons
Everything you need to get started is in the box.
Plug into a USB port and you’re ready to go.
No external audio mixer needed (but you could get one).
Compatible with PCs and most game systems (see below).
NOT compatible with Xbox for some reason.
No built-in mute button.
No jack for monitor headphones.
Sensitivity could cause problems if using the mic in a noisy environment.
Price & Value for Money
Considering that this Fifine is an all-in-one set which contains everything you need to get started (except for software), this is a great value. I don’t think you’d want to record musical instruments with it (other mics specialize in that) but for voiceover work, it would do the trick.
And of course for an online meeting, USB gaming, or just a casual Skype call, it will do just fine. BETTER than fine, Fifine.
Fifine Microphone T669: The Last Word
Wow, this microphone was a lot better than I was expecting for the price. I’m not a professional audio engineer, so those of you who are can pick apart my statements as you see fit, but I see no reason to buy a more expensive mic if all you’re going to use it for is remote working and the occasional non-professional voice recording or streaming broadcast. Get something else for music recording.
Fifine has set a high standard even with their semi-professional microphones such as this one. I may get a few more of their products to test and review. When I do, I’ll definitely post reviews of them here!
Is the Fifine T669 worth it?
I would say yes. Considering the quality of the microphone itself as well as the included accessories, it’s a hard value to beat.
What type of microphone is the Fifine T669?
It’s a condenser mic with a cardioid pickup pattern. It connects via USB.
Do Fifine Mics have software?
The T669 is a USB microphone, so it’s completely plug and play for Windows, Mac, Linux, and Chromebook computers. It also works with a Sony Playstation 4/5, but NOT Xbox. You don’t need to install any special driver to use this mic.