Whats the best microphone to use with Dragon NaturallySpeaking?

USB Wireless Microphone for Computer

So you want the best microphone for Dragon.

Thats like asking what the best car or house is.

The answer, as always, is: Depends.

,Note that there are potentially thousands of microphones suitable for use with Dragon, many of which I may not be aware of even though I am a Nuance certified vendor of Dragon.

Someone out there may have the killer mike that I have never heard of.

The following selection is necessarily based on the brands and models that I have sold and used in recent years.

,Also note that every new version of Dragon is less picky about the microphone you are using.

My general working assumption is that if the microphoneu2019s noise cancellation is adequate for your noise enviroment, accuracy should not be noticeably different.

,So dont overthink this.

Find something that works and stick with it.

From a time saving perspective, get a more expensive model as they are more likely to be noise cancelling and will last longer (for headsets look into FlexyMikes or Sennheiser).

,One more thing, USB microphones tend to be better than those with a 2.

5 or 3.

5 mm jack.

They are less sensitive to interference from your computer (fans, vibrations and what not).

,Lets narrow this down:,What kind of microphone are you looking for?,Headset: Ideal for long dictations in the office, sitting in front of the computer.

Most users choice, fairly cheap, hands-free use of computer.

Well-suited for longer dictation.

Wired or wireless models.

,Hand microphone (e.

g.

Philips SpeechMike): Preferred by physicians, ideal for making short entries like in to Electronic Medical Records software.

Less complicated that putting on a headset and taking it off.

Also ideal for people hating headsets (avoid robot look, messes with hairdo).

,Table microphone: Combines advantages of headsets and hand-microphones.

Hands-free, but I have been told by potential clients that they do not want to look like bus drivers.

Takes up space on desk.

,Digital voice recorder: Good if you want to record something on the move.

Ideal for people with jobs that do not require sitting in front of a computer: sales, insurance assessors, police, fire brigade, surgeons.

Some - especially the pricier Philips models (DPM 8000) - also double as decent hand microphones in quiet environments.

,Other alternatives: Stage microphones, mikes you hang around your neck.

,HeadsetsnUnless you are dictating in an environment with varying noise levels (even beside an open window), any headset by Sennheiser or Jabra will do just fine.

If you want something very lightweight and donu2019t need the headphones, go with the very good FlexyMikes.

If you need something sturdy for carrying along, pick the more expensive models (Jabra BIZ, Sennheiser from SC series upwards).

,The more expensive ones are also a lot more noise cancelling.

Same can be said for wireless/Bluetooth.

If you go for value, choose Sennheiser PC-26/36.

Theyre good and should last 2-3 years.

Theyre also available almost everywhere.

,Table mikesnThere is not that much choice, but TableMikes by SpeechWare are very good.

There are now also the TravelMike and TwistMike varieties of the TableMike which are easier to carry.

Especially the TravelMike is recommended for use with laptops and convertibles.

A USB sound card is strongly recommended.

,Hand mikenMy favorite is the Philips SpeechMike.

Excellent noise cancellation, perfect recording quality = high accuracy, quite sturdy.

Models by Olympus are also fine in not so loud environments.

,Digital voice recordersnThe choice is mostly between Olympus and Philips.

As for accuracy, it is hard to notice a difference.

DVRs are not so good in loud environments, even when the settings are correct.

Philips DPM models double as hand microphones, the DPM 8000 can control the Dragon microphone with the free Philips device control center software.

,AlternativesnYoud have to do your own research, I have never had need for one of these.

I used to use the Revolabs xTag microphone for some time (back in 2009), but stopped using it due to insufficient noise cancelation, eventually sold it.

This model may have changed.

This kind of microphone is uncommon in Europe, so some vendor from the US may weigh in.

,Again, dont overthink this.

Unless you are using a crappy 5-10$ microphone or the noise level in your work environment changes, you are unlikely to profit from changing microphones all the time.

,It is much more important to find the kind of mike you are comfortable with.