Newer MEMS microphones give much better response than older style electret mics, and they're smaller too.
This Sparkfun breakout for the ADMP401 MEMs microphone makes it easy to add the quality sound reception found in most cellphones to your project. It's super tidy, and sits flat for easy addition to your enclosure.
The breakout board's amplifier has a gain set to 67, which is well suited to the microphone's requirements. The output is set up to float at 1/2 Vcc (half the power provided) at quiet levels, and peaks at +/- 200mV when subjected to a speaking voice an arm's length away.