Do I need a microphone

I just finished a presentation on PowerPoint 2010.  I want to add narration which I know how to do (via PowerPoint).
My laptop has a built-in microphone but the narration has obvious static background noise.
Should I get an external microphone?  And can you recommend one?
Should I consider purchasing an audio insertion program with lots of features?  What program would you recommend?
Someone mentioned to me, Audacity, which is a free audio editor and recorder.  Is Audacity better than PowerPoint's?

Thanks.
PeterAsked:
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Echo_SCommented:
http://www.indezine.com/articles/powerpoint-microphone-favorites.html has good information about preferred mics.

Audacity is a good audio editor. It will let you edit the sound more easily than if you record it directly in PowerPoint. That's probably the biggest advantage. Otherwise, I think a good mic will make a huge difference.
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mikelfritzCommented:
This depends on the budget.  I'd recommend almost any plantronics headset and put two fingers distance from your mouth to the mic.  About 1 1/4 inch.

For lower priced I'd go DSP-400 ~US$50
Higher priced maybe the DSP-500 ~US$150

I don't think you need any software to help as long as the audio flow is good and it's just the quality audio you need.  Audacity is great for some things but they are mostly on the editing side in your case I'd think.  I doubt you'll need to seriously edit if its just the sound quality you are after.
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Michael DyerSenior Systems Support AnalystCommented:
I just use the inexpensive USB headset that came with my Nuance Dragon software and it works great.
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mikelfritzCommented:
Side note - Audacity is free and it won't fix a bad microphone.  It may be helpful but you need something better first for the input.  You need the microphone - maybe some audacity.
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mikelfritzCommented:
The biggest thing is to have a decent wind screen on the mic and keep a uniform distance from your mouth.  Then you set it once and it works every time.  Even a cheap headset with 3.5mm jacks will work well - I find the plantrontics a lot more comfortable and easier to use.
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PeterAuthor Commented:
Thanks to all for the good info.
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