The streaming mic market isn’t nearly as packed as the headset market. Not only that, but the people that are in it are generally repurposing products. It’s not that a streaming mic can’t be good if it was formerly for instrument recording or radio, but that wasn’t its intended purpose. Last week, I had the pleasure of listening to Jordan Trais (Senior Product Manager) walk me through the features of the incoming Alias and Alias Pro, streaming mics from SteelSeries, and it certainly struck a chord with me. SteelSeries isn’t just trying to jump into the market for a quick buck, they want to identify what gamers and streamers need in their setups and provide a solution based on them.
My initial impression when looking at the mic was simply that it looked cool. That’s something you want, considering you’ll be staring it down for hours during a streaming session, but the design is more than that. The mic houses a 1″ mic capsule, which is huge compared to the competition, that uses a cardioid capture pattern. That means you’re getting more vocal frequencies, and the vocals captured is specific to streamers. SteelSeries prefers to make this one the best at what it does, because when you get too busy and go the 4-in-1 route like some do, you can become the jack-of-all-trades and master of none. Do your thing best, and people will gravitate to it.
ClearCast is a brand name I recognize because of my affinity with SteelSeries products, but not one everyone will. This is the tech behind their headset mics, and they’re leveraging it further with the Alias and Alias Pro. On a headset, they’ve been great because of the bi-directional mic that allows for noise cancellation, and that extends to the new streaming mics. Even further, SteelSeries Sonar software utilizes it, giving you a double punch with the built-in feature and software working together to give you crystal clear vocal input.
The Alias and Alias Pro feature a cool shock mount system as well. This helps in keeping your mic from picking up all the vibrations as you shuffle around your desk. SteelSeries put actual study into this, to see what tension can assist with masking those unwanted keyboard clicks or mouse movements from rumbling in the background. They’ve made sure it’s functional; not just for show, and it’s easily detachable from the stand to boom arm without much hassle.
One of the things I love on the Alias model is the LED monitoring system and mute functionality. There’s a level meter on the face of the Alias, which allows you to see your peak as you’re talking, and keeps you from overdriving it. This also doubles as a mute indicator, with a big red X screaming to you that you’re muted. The mute “button” itself uses a tap sensor, so you aren’t fighting with pushing it, as well as making sound while pressing it. Thankfully, they’ve even made it activate on the touch instead of release, so you don’t have to let go in order to make it work.
Of course, the star of the show is the Alias Pro. This XLR and pre-amped powered mic is the premium offering, and SteelSeries wants to utilize it especially to make streamers lives easier. The stream mixer isn’t just useful as a pre-amp, with several dials and buttons that are remappable via Sonar to do exactly what you need it to do. It also offers dual USB-C connectivity, meaning if you’re using a dual PC streaming setup, you don’t have to go through a crazy maze of wiring and software to get your input audio across your PCs. This is a huge deal, with everything you need in one box.
It’s made even simpler by Sonar for Streamers, SteelSeries new section in the Sonar app. I’ve already told you many times that you need to download the app — just the EQ for your gaming is worth it — but the way it assists streamers is on another level. Gone is your need to rig multiple audio inputs through OBS, and in is a single audio master. This doesn’t mean you lose control either, with Sonars control panel letting you manage the game audio, music, Discord, and mic volumes separately. You’re simply getting a single channel going out, giving a streamer the control they need. There’s much more we could go through on this — and we will during the review process — but hearing Jordan relay all this just made me smile.
SteelSeries is proving to be for gamers, and this latest offering reinforces that. Being able to have an all-in-one solution in streaming is no longer a fantasy, you have an option in the Alias and Alias Pro. Check out the news of the drop here, and we hope you enjoy our unboxing video above. Keep your eyes peeled for GamingTrend’s Alias and Alias Pro review.
David Burdette is a gamer/writer/content creator from TN and Lead Editor for Gaming Trend. He loves Playstation, Star Wars, Marvel, and many other fandoms. He also plays way too much Call Of Duty. You can chat with him on Twitter @SplitEnd89.