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Best Microphone for Dragon Naturally Speaking

Updated on September 30, 2012

Choosing the Right Microphone Makes a Huge Difference!

Dragon Naturally Speaking Voice Recognition software has to hear your voice well in order to work correctly. The best way to achieve this is an excellent microphone!

If you're having problems, you might need a different microphone.

Dragon Naturally Speaking can do a GREAT job at recognizing your voice. Consider upgrading your microphone today!

CAD U2 USB Stereo Headphone with Mic - Extreme Accuracy and Comfort

This headset is advertised for VoIP, podcasting, and listening to music. Although this headset does all of those things well, it also really excels at voice recognition! With Dragon Naturally Speaking 11, I receive very few dictation errors, even with some background noise. The microphone's position is very flexible, so it can be maneuvered to just the right spot. The microphone has a cardioid pick-up pattern which minimizes background noise.

This microphone is made by CAD Audio, who has been manufacturing microphones for over 75 years. They produce commercial microphones used by musicians.

CAD U2 USB Stereo Headphone with Mic
CAD U2 USB Stereo Headphone with Mic

My Favorite Headset for Dragon Naturally Speaking!

Pros:

- Extreme Accuracy with Dragon Naturally Speaking 11

- Easily Adjustable Microphone Placement - Very Flexible in Positioning

- Headphones are a Comfortable Fit

- Sound quality for listening to music is excellent

- Superb recording quality

- It plugs directly into a USB port. This eliminates the electronic noise/interference that you may get with using a microphone that plugs into your sound card or motherboard.

Cons:

The earpads may become flaky after a year or so.

 

If you want to spend less money, these also work quite well.... - A Very Affordable USB Microphone/Headset

Microsoft LifeChat LX-3000 Headset
Microsoft LifeChat LX-3000 Headset

Before buying the CAD U2 headset, this was my favorite. This is still half the price of the CADs, so if you really want to save money, these will work for accuracy with Dragon. However, there are a few negatives...

Pro:

- It plugs directly into a USB port. This eliminates the electronic noise/interference that you may get with using a microphone that plugs into your sound card or motherboard.

- Using it with Dragon Naturally Speaking 11, I have very few errors. Mostly, the only errors I get are contextual errors that happen when I speak at a slower rate than normal speech, and the software incorrectly guesses the context.

- This is a cheap microphone headset.

- Good quality earpads that won't flake.

Con:

- The positioning of the microphone is not very flexible.

- The headphones are not as comfortable as the CAD U2 because they are not as adjustable.

- I don't recommend them for listening to music because of sound quality.

- Recording sound quality is low compared to the CAD U2.

- The CAD U2 are slightly better for accuracy.

 

Other Excellent Microphones and Headsets - Recommended by Speech Recognition Specialists

The following microphones are recommended by Softnet Speech Recognition Specialists. The exact model number may vary, but I've tried to find the closest matches.

Andrea Communications NC-181 VM USB On-Ear Mono (Monaural) Headset (NC-181VM USB)
Andrea Communications NC-181 VM USB On-Ear Mono (Monaural) Headset (NC-181VM USB)

This microphone is only recommended for quite environments.

 

Want Dragon Naturally Speaking to Work Even Better? - Last year we upgraded to Version 11 Premium, and it keeps getting better!

Dragon NaturallySpeaking Premium 11 [Old Version]
Dragon NaturallySpeaking Premium 11 [Old Version]

Like I said above, this program hardly ever makes mistakes! Yes, I've trained it, and yet I use a good USB microphone, but this program rocks. I use it with Windows 7.

One of the advantages that Premium has over the Home version, is that you can dictate into a voice recorder.

By the way, Dragon NaturallySpeaking 11.5 is a free upgrade for version 11 customers. I did just install version 11.5 on a new laptop running Windows 7 64 bit... I had to use compatibility mode for Windows Vista to get it to run.

 

Do you have any comments on choosing the best microphone? - I'd love to hear your thoughts!

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    • bluelily lm profile image

      bluelily lm 4 years ago

      I have used dragon natural speaking software but not with much success may be due less frequent use and lack of good quality microphone.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      I'm not familiar with Dragon Naturally Speaking...well I guess I am not with your excellent presentation on best microphones.