In this article, we’ll explain how to connect your Shure SM7B Dynamic Microphone with your computer and make it sound great for your recording, podcast, or live stream. We’ll also touch on some of your options for audio interfaces and mixers you can pair with this microphone.

Quick Answer: Attach the microphone to a stand or boom arm and position the mic 2-3″ away from your mouth. Connect the Shure SM7B to an audio interface, then from the audio interface to your computer via XLR cables. Finally, choose your post processing and mixing settings. 

Shure SM7B Dynamic Microphone

Shure SM7B Microphone Set Up

Out of the box, the Shure SM7B comes with another windscreen, and that’s it. On its own, the microphone doesn’t stand up well and can’t connect to anything. So you’ll need a stand, some cables, and an audio interface. 

Mic Stand vs Boom Arm 

You can use a basic table stand if you’re on a low budget or just want to get started quickly, but they offer very little in the way of shock isolation. So you’ll pick up a lot of bumps and clicks through the table.

The Shure SM7B does have some sound isolation built into it, but for the best results, we recommend using a boom arm, such as the Rode PSA1+. It gives you the greatest flexibility and offers significantly more sound absorption.

Shure SM7B Microphone Positioning

Microphone placement is paramount in getting the best results out of your setup. The Shure SM7B needs to be within a couple inches. You can measure this distance with your fist. If the microphone is too close, the sound is boomy and poppy. Too far away, and your equipment may pick up background noise or you may hear hissing in the playback. Lastly, positioning the microphone down and pointed up at your mouth helps reduce breathing noise.

Using XLR Cables

Canare XLR Cable

Next, you’ll want some XLR cables to connect the microphone to your audio interface. All standard XLR cables will have a male and female jack on it. If you use a ten or twenty foot cable, it will provide a little extra flexibility and allow you to keep everything tidy.

We recommend the Canare L-4E6S Star-Quad XLR cable. They provide the highest quality of any star-quad studio cables we’ve used. Click the link to read our in-depth review.

Shure SM7B Windscreen

There are two windscreen options for the Shure SM7B. While the smaller primary windscreen looks better on camera, the thicker alternative windscreen gives better audio consistency.

Shure SM7B Switch Settings

The SM7B has a few switches on the back. You can experiment with these, but we leave them set to factory flat because it’s easier and more detailed to do the processing anywhere else in the chain than on the microphone itself.

Microphone Gain Setup 

The loudest a microphone can be in a digital environment is 0dB. We recommend setting the peak between -12 and -18dB so that if you laugh or cough suddenly, the microphone doesn’t distort.

Connecting the Shure SM7B

Shure SM7B > XLR cable > Audio Interface > Computer

Connecting the SM7B is easy. Simply plug an XLR cable into the back of the microphone, and then the other into the XLR jack on the back of the audio interface of your choice. The Shure SM7B is notoriously difficult to power, so you can’t just use an XLR cable to connect the microphone directly to your computer. A computer won’t provide enough power to the microphone, so you need an audio interface.

Audio Interfaces & Mixers for the Shure SM7B

It’s worth investing in a high quality next generation audio interface. The newer interfaces resolve the issue of needing a lot of outboard gear like the Cloudlifter CL-1, which means that the microphone will just simply work out of the box with newer equipment.

We also recommend using an interface with a physical mute button and the ability to power a high quality set of headphones. Here are a few different models to consider, all of which provide a powerful software suite to mix in music, live stream, or game audio with the input from the microphone.

  • Best for Streaming: Elgato Wave XLR – Small, intuitive, and benefits from the extensive Elgato family of software tools.
  • Best Overall Value: Focusrite Vocaster One – Great device for a one or two person podcast, with inputs and outputs on the back that allow all kinds of routing.
  • Best for Group Podcasting: Rode Procaster II – Capable of operating as a standalone streaming machine, recording to multiple computers, complex routing, sound effects, and tons of built-in processing. This is the heavyweight option.

Processing & Mixing 

Lastly, you’ll want to have a play with the post processing settings. Most people add some compression, which narrows the dynamic range of the microphone. There is a risk of over compressing, which can take the emotion out of what you’re saying.

Most audio interfaces offer tons of compression and equalization options, meaning that the Shure SM7B doesn’t need to sound all the same all the time. There’s a lot of work that you can do to change the sound of this microphone depending on how you’re mixing it with things on your livestream, podcast, or whatever you’re doing.

Shure SM7B Microphone Pricing: 

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Shure SM7B Microphone Topics:

  •  0:00 – Introduction 
  • 0:11 – Video Setup 
  • 0:30 – Pricing & Specs 
  • 0:45 – Shure SM7B 
  • 1:02 – Mic Stand & Boom Arm 
  • 2:40 – Audio Interfaces & Mixers 
  • 4:23 – Streaming: Elgato Wave XLR & Shure SM7B 
  • 4:55 – Best Value: Focusrite Vocaster One & Shure SM7B 
  • 5:21 – Group Podcast: Rode Procaster II & Shure SM7B 
  • 5:55 – Setup Shure SM7B 
  • 6:05 – Microphone Placement 
  • 7:45 – XLR Cable 
  • 10:23 – Gain Setup 
  • 8:55 – Foam Windscreen 
  • 9:49 – Shure SM7B Switches 
  • 10:23 – Post Processing & Mixing 
  • 14:02 – Final Thoughts