I was genuinely intrigued by this curious, un-microphone looking device before it even arrived in my mailbox. I couldn’t wait to contact the creative people at Blast Radio. So I emailed them right from my car (I was in the passenger seat) and they responded before I had even finished grocery shopping!
Retailing for $249USD, the Blast microphone is a very unique product. At first glance, it appears like an oddly shaped microphone made out of mushroom colored, polycarbonate plastic with a few buttons. But this microphone has a lot of secrets. Underneath that weird exterior is a powerful live broadcasting platform sporting wifi (802.11 b/g/n) and bluetooth 4.2 connectivity along with a fully featured recording studio and social media integration. That’s a lot right?
The Blast Mic arrived in an attractive recyclable box with Blast’s logo on the front. It’s a sturdy box that will undoubtably double as storage when the mic is not in use. Although I can definitely see this permanently living on my desktop or laptop bag due to all of its crazy functionality. Inside the box is a USB-C to USB-A charging cable, the Blast Mic itself, a “getting started” card and a sticker! Anyone who frequents my reviews knows I give extra points for swag!
Setting up the Blast mic was easy. Charging the Blast mic takes about two and a half hours with an external 1A USB power source. Once charged, I simply downloaded the Blast Radio mobile app (IOS or Google Play) and created my profile. Holding down the red button on the mic’s right side will power it up and put it into set up mode. Once inside the app, simply pressing the broadcast button and then “set up device” will get you going. Once setup is completed, it’s as simple as pressing the bright red button on the side to go live! Blast has even included a full demo video to get you started!
Broadcasting with the Blast Mic is simple. But that does not mean the company has cut corners anywhere. The quality is impressive! The two XY electret microphones have adjustable gain and the mic also has two extra 3.5mm mic inputs with 3-volt phantom power in the event you would like to add more external phantom powered microphones. A line level input allows you to pull in an external audio source like a laptop (or essentially any audio source). The mic also includes two headphone inputs perfect for interviewing a guest or a podcasting setup. The mic’s internal battery will broadcast for an impressive 8 hours on a single charge. But even if you don’t want to go live, the mic can be connected via one of the two outputs to another audio source for great, high quality audio capture. Blast has really thought of everything here.
A feature I really appreciated is that with one long press of the status button on the side I can mute all the external microphones connected to the Blast mic (essentially built-in audio ducking). This comes in handy especially for podcasters doing live introductions or talking over the introduction of a song. Just like Johnny Fever! Kids, ask your parents.
During a live broadcast, on-board signal processing happens on the fly to maximize audio quality and the mic streams audio via uncompressed PCM audio packets (48kHz/16b) and saves them to the cloud. Streams can then be downloaded as lossless .wav files for further processing. Broadcasts are displayed to Blast Radio app users through the app and stay visible for 24 hours after the broadcast. But will live indefinitely on Blast’s unlimited cloud storage service!
If all of these features along with great battery life and audio quality weren’t enough, Blast has added a social media component. Blast Radio users, upon sign-up are given their own personalized web-player address to integrate into a website or include on social media posts. Fellow-app users will be taken to your profile inside the Blast Radio app, non-users will be taken to a web-page where they can tune in via the web.
This social media integration allows listeners to send monetary tips or “fan mail” along with personal messages that will light up the mic’s funky display with light flourishes signifying a tip has been made. Broadcasters can also respond back with a message of thanks live while the broadcast is happening. I can see this being very popular on TikTok and Youtube live broadcasts. Any monetary tips collected by the broadcast can be exported through Stripe.
I’m not going to lie, I really love Blast Mic. It’s a very well thought out, plucky little device that serves a great gap in the marketplace. It allows a wide swath of users from the completely tech-illiterate to the advanced podcaster, a quick, high quality way to get live audio online and in front of an audience without wading through the menus and settings of an audio interface and recording software.
If you’re completely new and looking to get into the podcast space, or an advanced podcaster with a need for a quick device to capture interviews and get quality audio, you can’t go wrong with Blast mic. Simply press the red button and go live!
Note: Our reviews are always 100% independent but Gearadical receives a small affiliate amount if you purchase the product on Amazon.com.