Audio-Technica AT2020 Cardioid Condenser Microphone
Gearank High Notes
- March 2022: Equal Highest Rated XLR Condenser Mic Under $100
General Home Studio Use
The AT2020 features a low-mass diaphragm that lets it handle high SPL (Sound Pressure Levels) better than many other condenser microphones.
It also has a smaller 16mm-diameter black-electret capsule, which give it a subtly brighter sound, that complements certain applications like female vocals, closed-miked horns, small bodied acoustic guitars, drum kit overheads and more.
Additionally, the components are protected by a modern looking cast metal exterior that's easy to store and easy on the eyes.
Recording Acoustic Guitar
This is a great entry level mic for recording acoustic guitar players.
The Audio-Technica AT2020 works really well in reproducing the high frequency zing of spruce top acoustics, without having to drill a hole in your pocket.
This particular small diaphragm mic handles loud instruments well with a max SPL of 158dB with pad, without compromising much of the low end compared to other small diaphragm mics in this price range. This makes the AT2020 have a brighter sound which is ideal for steel string acoustics.
- Type: Condenser
- Polar Pattern: Cardioid
- Frequency Response: 20 to 20,000 Hz
- Impedance: 100 ohms
- Maximum SPL: 144 dB
- Applications: Recording vocals & instruments
- Power Requirements: 48V phantom power
Many owners are happy with the Audio-Technica AT2020's high 144dB SPL, and how it handles loud sound sources without compromising much of the low-end and overall sonic quality. In addition, there are a good number of reports that attest to this mic's solid build and reliability. Users are happy with the peace of mind that they get from its worry free operation. There are even a number of users who favorably compare the analog sound of this mic to the popular dynamic mic Shure SM58, when used on vocals.
There are a few who complained about the headphone out feature, reporting that the sound level that comes out is lower than they expected. Some are not too fond of the subtly brighter sound, especially when the vocalist stands too far back from the mic.
The Audio-Technica AT2020 is an ideal budget-friendly condenser mic for home studios that are expanding to capture loud sound sources. It is a great supplementary mic if you already have a large diaphragm condenser, and it can also be a good all-around mic if you are miking wind and percussive instruments.
Although this is a good mic, there are more highly rated options available which you can see in our guides to: