Before we get started with this review and while we are on the subject of Bees please go save a Bee, donate to a Bee charity, or give a Bee a home. We need Bees. Lots of them. Thanks.
Neat Microphones presents the Heir to its original analog XLR microphone the Worker Bee. A medium diaphragm condenser microphone remembered for its rich vocals and precise capturing of instruments. The Worker Bee II features a Proprietary 25mm medium diaphragm condenser capsule with internal shock mount, Class-A discrete electronics, and an XLR balanced output priced at $99.99
So far both Neat Microphones I have been able to test have stuck to the “Odd Shaped” theme. LOL, the Worker Bee II housing kind of looks like the abdomen of a Honey Bee! While the shape is a bit awkward it does become lost in its professional-looking all-black exterior. A half-sphere casing holding the Diaphragm then extends from a small conduit connected to the housing. I like heavy products and the Worker Bee II weighs in at just under 1LB which is heavy for its size. It really feels like a quality manufactured product when holding it in your hands. A small adjustable rig attaches to the bottom of the housing allowing you to adjust its position on the boom arm which quite clearly means it is meant to be hung upside down. It has a small Neat logo on the front side of the housing but does not feature any RGB lighting.
There aren’t many options for XLR microphones are this price point, let alone good options. If you don’t know by now my fellow live streamers an analog microphone will give you the best sound for your vocals. Combine this with a medium to large size diaphragm and you are in business! The Worker Bee II sets itself up in a pretty good place here when it comes to sound quality. Its 11 dB-A noise level allows you to filter out unwanted background noise. While the 19.0 mV/Pa higher sensitivity is typical of condenser microphones they require less pre-amplification to bring the sound to a usable level on the mixer channel. I am mega impressed with the sound quality of the Worker BeeII.
If you are serious about your live stream and ready to take it to the next level, you want to go analog. Analog is what all the pros use for a reason. Its clear Worker Bee II has a tremendous value at $99.99.
Transducer Type: Permanently polarized 25mm diameter condenser capsule
Polar Pattern: Cardioid
Frequency Response: 20 Hz – 20 kHz
Sensitivity: 19.0 mV/Pa @ 1 kHz (1 Pa = 94 dB SPL)
Output Impedance: 50 ohms
Rated Load Impedance: >1k ohms
Maximum SPL: 145 dB SPL (2.5k ohms, 0.5% THD)
S/N Ratio: 83 dB-A (IEC 651)
Noise Level: 11 dB-A (IEC 651)
Dynamic Range: 34.0 dB @2.5k
Power Requirement: +48V DC phantom power (IEC 268-15)
Product Weight: 0.93 lbs/0.42 kg
Product Dimensions: 6.25″ x 3″
Includes: Swivel-mount stand