If you are streamer or gamer a good microphone is an essential part of your kit. This is why for years I’ve been using my ever-reliable Blue Yeti USB microphone for gaming, streaming, and podcasting. In a tense moment of gaming action, or during an important video call, the last thing you want to deal with is any voice disruption. Thanks to the team at Thronmax, I received the Thronmax Mdrill One Pro USB Microphone along with the Thronmax Caster Boom Stand to put it through its paces.
The first thing I noticed about the Thronmax MDrill One Pro was how light it was as I lifted it out of its snug packaging. The mic itself only weighs 262 grams. With the desktop stand, the combo comes to 678 grams. For any content creators who travel with your kit – you know this is a big deal. Every gram counts in that precious carry on luggage weight allocation when travelling for conventions and events. The microphone has an aluminium casing, showing a slight sparkle through the jet black finish. The microphone also comes in slate grey (if you like boring).
The Thronmax MDrill One Pro is stylish but not outlandish. The vertical channels protecting the three capsules presents as a classical and sleek design, compared to the usual mesh style protection on condenser microphones. On the lower half of the microphone there are two buttons and two dials. The front facing buttons control mute functions, and recording modes. The rear facing dials control volume, for monitoring through the 3.5mm headphone jack on the base of the mic, and gain.
The Thronmax MDrill One Pro comes with a 3-metre braided USB-C power cable. You’ll have to excuse me here for a moment while I give Thronmax 1000 internet points for picking a braided cable design. As someone who loves cable management, the texture and longevity of a braided cable will always curry favour with me. For anyone looking to invest in the Thronmax Caster Boom Stand, an additional power cable has been threaded through the stand – saving that hard work for you.
One of the major selling points of this mic is inbuilt lighting. While not as flashy as the HyperX QuadCast, the Thronmax MDrill One Pro has a base ring light that can be set to one of seven colours. A small button on the base selects the light colour or can be used to switch off the light if preferred. The light glow filters through small holes located at the base of the microphone that are designed to support ambient noise cancellation. An LED meter on the front of the microphone will light up while you adjust the volume or gain – a handy feature considering these dials are on the rear of the device.
The Thronmax MDrill One Pro is user friendly. No driver installation is required, creating a true plug and play set up experience. The microphone came out of the box attached to the desk stand. The caster boom stand took less than five minutes to set up – a couple of screws and clamps tightened, and everything was good to go. The caster stand features spring loaded joints, which didn’t bend as much as I would have liked to be a perfect fit for my short desk length. To negotiate that issue, I used the stand to hover the microphone up and over my monitors.
Recording and Sound
The Thronmax MDrill One Pro boasts a unique mix of features. What most piqued my interest most about this microphone was what Thronmax call their “Vertigain Technology”. The vertical grill on the microphone covers a “sound enhancing acoustic chamber” (as printed in the included pamphlet), which I assume limits acoustic distortion, together are expected to improve recording quality by 10%.
I have no way to test that as I’m not a sound engineer with access to a recording lab, and I’m also unsure what technology Thronmax have used as a comparison. What I can say is that for a USB microphone I was impressed at the plug and play sound. Jumping straight into using the microphone on Discord, a friend on voice chat noted my microphone did sound “smoother”.
Before I jump into a sound test, let me run through the other features. The Thronmax MDrill One Pro captures a sample rate of 96khz, well above most of its USB connection competition. As the microphone has three condensers it is a multipurpose device. The microphone comes with four recording capture options; Cardioid, stereo, bi-directional, and omni-directional. Streamers and content creators wanting to capture one sound source (like your voice), will want to stick with the cardioid setting.
|Recording Mode:||Best Used For:|
|Cardioid (front capture)||One source of sound – ie streaming|
|Stereo (front and side capture)||Vocals, instruments|
|Bidirectional (front and back capture)||Two person vocals – ie podcast|
|Omnidirectional (all directions capture)||Events, conference calls, ambient environment sounds|
I found it simple to use the Thronmax MDrill One Pro with Streamlabs, Audition, and FL Studio. While I would always opt to use an XLR connection microphone at fixed recording locations, the ease of plug and play with this microphone makes it a serious competitor in the USB microphone field.
Power required: 5V 250mA (USB)
Sample rate: 96khz
Bit Rate: 24 bit
Capsules: 3 x 16mm studio-grade condenser capsules
Frequency Response: 20hz – 20khz
PC/Mac with USB port
Microsoft Windows 7 or higher
Apple Mac OS 10.7 or higher
Power Out: 180mW
Frequency response 15hz – 22khz
What’s in the Box
MDrill One Pro with desk stand
3-meter braided USB Type C cable
After completing a few sound tests across applications, I found the Thronmax MDrill One Pro an improvement on my trusted Blue Yeti microphone. The Yeti is a hand-me-down microphone, which I’ve had for more than five years, so this is not a comparison to a new model. The Thronmax microphone provided a vocal warmth missing from the Blue Yeti. I intentionally left a small fan heater running behind me, and found the Thronmax superior in reducing the ambient noise. Sibilants (“s” sounds) were also less harsh on the Thronmax in comparison to the Yeti.
I have issues with the volume and gain control being on the rear facing side of the Thronmax Mdrill One Pro base, and I had some difficulties controlling the positioning of the caster boom stand. While the microphone being lightweight is a huge advantage for me, it may not be preferred for those who would prefer a heftier build for more permanent placement.
These issues were minor, and considering the plug and play, lightweight aspects, and overall recording quality, this makes the Thronmax MDrill One Pro earned its spot as my new “on the go” microphone. Regardless of if you are streaming, podcasting, or just like hearing the sound of your voice, this is one microphone you won’t want to drop.