ClearOne Ceiling Microphone and its successor – the ClearOne Ceiling Microphone Dante, are two microphones with an unobtrusive elegant design. They both come at a reasonable price. The two mics are recommended for small-to-medium conferences, presentations, or training rooms.
We consider the ClearOne beamforming ceiling microphone a better solution for larger rooms.
But which one of the ClearOne microphones is the right solution for your needs?
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At a Glance
The two microphones have quite similar designs. Both of them have a small size.
Although they look alike, the two ClearOne microphones do not have much in common, comparing their audio characteristics and the way of connection.
The team of ClearOne put effort into improving both the design and the audio specifications of the newer Dante model compared to its older brother. The Dante ClearOne Ceiling Microphone looks like a reliable and valuable investment.
The older ClearOne Ceiling Microphone does not have as good audio specifications, although it can be the right solution in some situations. The microphone works well at a shorter range.
The main difference between the two is the connectivity specifics. This is the most important issue when choosing between the two microphones.
The DanteClearOne Ceiling Microphone uses the Dante protocol, as its name says. Its interface box is connected to the network using a Cat5E cable.
Besides, this mic can use a custom up-to-7-feet-long dropdown long cable connecting the mic to the ceiling box. This is an impressive length, and it can be adjusted to be shorter or longer so there is an optimal distance between the speaker and the microphone.
The older ClearOne Ceiling Microphone does not use Dante. Its ceiling box connects directly to a mixer using a Cat5E plug. If you need an XLR plug to connect the ceiling box to a mixer, you can use an RJ45 to XLR adapter. The good news is such an adapter is included in the most recent releases of the model.
This model can use 1-foot or 2-feet dropdown cables included in the package. That is shorter than the adjusted 7-feet cable of the improved Dante model. We find this short-length cable as one of the obstacles to using this mic for larger spaces. So bear in mind if the cable length works for your case.
What kind of devices can the microphones connect to?
The ClearOne Dante Microphone is compatible with ClearOne or other DSP mixers which use Dante. Up to 4 microphones can be daisy-chained in one Dante audio system.
The ClearOne Ceiling Microphone is optimized for ClearOne mixers – CONVERGE Pro, INTERACT Pro, INTERACT Pro 8i, and INTERACT AT. It can also work with other DSP mixers. Still, the mic is fit to work best with the DSP mixers of the same brand.
Both microphones suit small-to-medium conference rooms, presentation rooms, and training rooms. Both microphones are built up of three cardioid microphone elements, so they have 360-degree coverage. The two microphones have shielding against RF interference. These are all the features they have in common.
The ClearOne Dante Ceiling Microphone packs better audio quality and has a larger range than its older brother.
Our tests show that one of the Dante microphones covers six participants sitting at a table. The microphone is specifically made to focus on improved speech intelligibility with a very high signal-to-noise ratio. So it is unsurprising that the ClearOne Dante catches sound with superior audio quality.
Besides, the long adjustable dropdown cable allows the microphone to be kept at an optimal distance away from the speaker, even with a very high ceiling.
The ClearOne Ceiling Microphone is optimized to work better at a shorter range. It can cover up to 4 participants. For larger rooms, multiple microphones can be used at the same time. The ClearOne Ceiling Microphone has a relatively short dropdown cable – 1-foot and 2-foot cables are included in the package. So this mic is recommended for rooms with a standard ceiling height.
Both microphones have quite an unobtrusive minimalistic design. Both of them are available in black and white color.
The newer model has its microphone elements bumped out, making it more rounded. The Dante model also has LEDs to show if the mic is on/off or muted.
We liked the ClearOne Dante Ceiling Microphone better. The main difference – connecting through the Dante protocol is only part of the reason. The audio quality is greatly improved compared to the old model. It is a microphone designed and made with an eye for detail. An unobtrusive good-looking, and excellent audio-quality microphone.
The ClearOne Ceiling Microphone has more limited opportunities regarding its audio quality. We recommend it for its reasonable price and as a good choice for huddle spaces.
If you are looking for a more reliable solution that is not Dante, you may look at the Vaddio Ceiling Microphone.