The ModMic is the ideal microphone for the PC gaming crowd. Why buy a gaming headset when you can build your own and make it better? That’s the pitch for the detachable boom microphone that you can connect to any pair of headphones. Now, ModMic manufacturer Antlion has a new revision that drops the 3.5mm plug in favor of a USB connection. And the result is the best-sounding ModMic yet.

The ModMic USB is available now for $80, and it comes with everything you need to add a microphone to your favorite pair (or multiple pairs) of headphones. Then, once you have it set up, your communications are going to sound better than just about any gaming headset you can buy. And because the ModMic USB delivers in those two key areas, it’s easy to recommend.

ModMic USB is easy to set up and use

The great thing about getting a gaming headset is that it usually just works. The microphone comes attached, and you can just plug it in and go. But Antlion has made the process of adding a ModMic to headphones that I wouldn’t even count it as a hurdle.

The packaging comes with multiple magnetic anchors connected to adhesive pads. All you have to do is clean your headphones with the included alcohol wipes. Then stick on the anchors, and you’re good to go.

The magnets enable you to plunk the ModMic itself on whenever you need it. Going out with your headphones and don’t need a mic? Just pull it off, and you’re set.

Keep in mind, however, that you will have to deal with cables. As the name suggests, the ModMic USB has its own USB cable that runs separate from your headphones. But I paired mine with a pair of Bluetooth headphones that use the low-latency AptX codec. This means I only have to deal with one cable.

ModMic USB sounds great

Ease-of-use is one thing, but Antlion’s add-on mic is worth it because it creates excellent audio footage.

You can hear it in the playlist below:

ModMic USB doesn’t sound as good as some of the more expensive dedicated USB microphones like a HyperX Quadcast or Blue Yeti. But I think it compares favorably to something like a Blue Snowball. You can hear the digital processing in the audio, but it isn’t too harsh. And it does a great job of filtering out background noise.

It’s good enough for streaming or recording voiceover for YouTube videos. And if you are starting out podcasting as a hobby, it’s totally serviceable for that.

In terms of how it compares to gaming headsets, I think it’s better than anything you’ll get for under $200. But some of that is going to come down to taste. The Tritton Kunai Pro sounds more natural, but I think the ModMic USB will make your voice sound fuller and richer.

If you are willing to spend a lot more on something like a Sennheiser GSP 550, however, you’ll get a mic that is nearing professional quality.

Should you get it?

The ModMic USB isn’t for everybody. Most people are going to be perfectly happy with a gaming headset. But if you already spent a lot of money on headphones, it’s a bummer to have to use something worse just to communicate with your teammates in games.

With this device, you can plop a great microphone on and off as needed. And I think it’s easily worth $80 to get a ModMic USB if it means I can keep using my favorite headphones.