The Best-Selling Microphones of 2020

Yesterday, we covered the best-selling pedals of 2020 for the first entry into our year-end best-selling lists. Next up in our series is microphones. Below you’ll find the rankings for the top selling microphones on Reverb in 2020, followed by a snapshot of sales broken down along brand lines.

In 2020, we saw a major increase in the number of people buying mics of all sorts, reflecting a general rise in interest in home recording as a result of COVID-19 lockdowns and social distancing. Tried-and-true beginner friendly standards like the Audio-Technica AT2020 and Shure SM57 continued to sell well, as did all manner of other home recording gear—basic recording interfaces, monitors, headphones, and more.

While these forces caused a general lift in overall sales volume, the breakdown of most popular microphone models remained more or less similar to previous years. Take a look below at our rankings and let us know in the comments what recording gear inspired you in 2020.

Check out more best-selling category lists from 2020: Best-Selling Pedals, Best-Selling Synths and Drum Machines.

Best-Selling Microphones of 2020

Rank Overall Bestsellers Average Used Price USD
1 Shure SM57 $88.19
2 Shure SM7B $373.46
3 Audio-Technica AT2020 $84.71
4 Shure SM58 $80.90
5 Sennheiser MD421 II $283.65
6 Rode NT1-A $186.22
7 Sennheiser e609 $87.91
8 Electro-Voice RE20 $353.01
9 Shure Beta 52A $144.36
10 Sennheiser e906 $129.43
11 Neumann TLM 103 $891.63
12 AKG C214 $286.33
13 Neumann TLM 102 $565.61
14 Sennheiser e604 $112.71
15 AKG D112 $134.96

Note that the rankings on this page are inclusive of both new and used sales, though when filtered to just new or just used, the rankings do not differ all that much. Additionally, where applicable, we’ve combined stereo pair sales as just one sale though the average used prices displayed are for just single microphones.

Best-Selling Microphones Over $500 USD

With some exceptions, the overall best-selling list tends to be dominated by more affordable options aimed at the beginner market. To give a glance at the more pro segment of the microphone world, here are the best sellers of 2020 filtered to just microphones with an average used sale price of over $500 USD.

Rank Best-Selling > $500 Average Used Price USD
1 Neumann TLM 103 $891.63
2 Neumann TLM 102 $565.61
3 Beyerdynamic M 160 $509.18
4 Neumann U 87 Ai $2,433.35
5 AKG C414 XLII $734.11
6 AKG C414 XLS $676.34
7 Royer R-121 $1,034.10
8 AKG C414 B ULS $834.57
9 Sennheiser MD 441U $593.65
10 Warm Audio WA-47 $750.03
11 Manley Labs Reference Cardioid Tube Mic $2,261.62
12 AKG D12 $604.85
13 Slate Digital ML-1 $559.03
14 Neumann TLM 49 $1,137.02
15 Neumann KM 184 (Stereo Pair) $1,148.98

2020 Saw a Major Increase in Used Microphone Prices

The biggest storyline from the used microphone market in 2020 was a general increase in used prices. Across the board, bluechip used microphones not only increased in used sale price on Reverb, but also saw faster sales from the point of listing in essentially every microphone category. Some examples:

Microphone 2019 Average Used Price 2020 Average Used Price Change
Shure SM57 $77.39 $88.19 +13.95%
Shure SM7B $327.20 $373.46 +14.14%
Rode NT-1A $155.80 $186.22 +19.53%
Sennheiser e906 $111.21 $129.43 +16.39%
Neumann TLM 103 $732.42 $891.63 +21.74%

Increasing prices on used microphones was not limited to the perennial top-sellers listed above either. The Townsend Labs Sphere L22 jumped considerably this year, as did the recently discontinued Sony C-800G which essentially doubled in price in a matter of months. The Manley Reference Cardioid remains the most popular large diaphragm tube mic despite its upper-market price tag, and this year the average used value continued to increase even while new ones are in steady supply.

The reason for this general lift in used prices is due to a few main factors. On the demand side, as mentioned above, 2020 saw a huge number of musicians, podcasters, and other creatives looking to get into recording for the first time. A good snapshot of this trend can be found in looking at sale prices as well as time-to-sale for used USB microphones, which are often recommended as go-to first steps for new recordists. Prices on used USB mics went up by about 15% while the time to sale went down by about 30%. Similar trends can be found when looking at this metric in related categories such as entry-level interfaces.

On the supply side, the music gear industry (like many industries) faced a number of supply chain challenges and part shortages this year as a result of COVID-19, particularly in the spring. As the supply of new gear from brands was held up, many folks flocked to the used market which had the effect of increasing demand and thus increasing prices and decreasing time-to-sale.

Reverb Microphone Market By Brand

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