REVIEW Shure MV88 Condenser Microphone – Enhance iPhone Record Audio/Visual

By | February 25, 2017
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Name: SHURE MV88 CONDENSER MICROPHONE
Website: www.shure.com/americas/motiv/mv88
Price: $149
Owner: Shure Inc.
Overall Rank: 95 out of 100

SHURE MV88 CONDENSER MICROPHONE – OVERVIEW

Anyone involved in the music industry knows that Shure microphones are the go-to preference of most professional musicians. Sure, there are other brands but it seems like you’re always going to find a Shure microphone somewhere on any given musical set.

Couple that with the knowledge that more and more affiliate marketers are making their own YouTube videos using their cell phones and I couldn’t help but wonder: if the audio quality is lacking, which it usually is, then there has to be a microphone available that will produce professional audio results. Especially when you consider that Apple is aiming more and more toward producing professional results when it comes to audio/video recording.

 

SHURE MV88 CONDENSER MICROPHONE – TARGET AUDIENCE

What did I find? The Shure MV88 Condenser Microphone that plugs into the iOS Lightning connector on iPads, iPods, and iPhones. It has proven to be perfect for the professional musician, vloggers and mobile journalists! Bloggers and other YouTuber’s are finding it to be a perfect fit for their existing high-fidelity iPhones, iPads and iPods while providing an affordable, compact and viable solution for their extended audio needs.

 

SHURE MV88 CONDENSER MICROPHONE – DYNAMIC VS. CONDENSER

A microphone picks up vibrations in the air in the form of air pressure variations, sound waves, and converts them to an electric signal. A dynamic microphone is simply a coil of wire in a magnetic field and will pick up the most simple of sound waves. It does not amplify the signal.
 

On the other hand, a condenser microphone has a vibrating diaphragm that functions as a capacitor, or source of electrical energy, coupled with a piezoelectric microphone which contains a crystal of some kind that produces electricity when exposed to sound waves. Condenser microphones require a preamplifer or phantom power in the form of 9, 12, 48 and sometimes even 52 volts. The Shure MV88 gets its power from the iPhone
 

A condenser microphone is much more flexible than a dynamic microphone. With a dynamic microphone, you pretty much plug it in and what you get is what you get. The signal is weak and must be amplified which can introduce noise and hiss. With a condenser microphone the signal is already “pre” amplified. You can make adjustments to gain, or the volume of the signal when it first reaches the soundboard or sound control, in this case iPhone.

 

SHURE MV88 CONDENSER MICROPHONE – MORE FLEXIBLE

The Shure MV88 comes with a free mobile app, ShurePlus MOTIV, that gives you the ability to configure the microphone for any need or situation. You can adjust the gain and pick one of the preset modes for recording: Speech, Singing, Acoustic (Acoustic Instruments), Loud (environment is loud and noisy) and Flat (general purpose).
Shure SharePlus MOTIV app

With the app you can select and adjust stereo width and the microphone pickup pattern of the microphone. For example, you can select mono bidirectional, mono cardioid and mid-side. It is truly a professional grade microphone.
 

The frequency response (audio range) of the microphone is 20hz to 20,000hz, the same range available with the Shure SM81 used for professional instrument miking such as acoustic guitar, pianos, overhead drum miking, woodwind instruments and background vocals.

shure mv88 condenser microphone spec sheet

 

SHURE MV88 CONDENSER MICROPHONE – COMPARISON

What review would be complete with a comparison: one without the Shure MV88 and one with the Shure MV88. Both recordings are “as-is” – that is, neither has been edited or enhanced. I simply recorded the audio/video, identifying each and with or without the Shure MV88 and posted the videos on YouTube.


Video 1: Using the iPhone internal microphone

Video 2: Using the Shure MV88 Condenser Microphone

Do you think the Shure MV88 Condenser Microphone made a difference? Leave a comment below and let me know.

 

SHURE MV88 CONDENSER MICROPHONE – PROS

  • Apple’s Lightning connector.
  • Studio quality condenser microphone.
  • Shure mv88 Box Front

  • Selectable recording quality up to 24-bit/48 kHz
  • Five built-in preset DSP modes: Speech, Singing, Acoustic, Loud and Flat
  • Selectable directionality of the microphone pattern.
  • Microphone has 90 degree hinge and fully rotational.
  • Adjustable gain +36dB
  • All-metal construction.
  • Easily removable windscreen.
  • Comes with rugged zippered carrying case.

 

SHURE MV88 CONDENSER MICROPHONE – CONS

The MOTIV app requires you to switch to Airplane mode and ‘Do Not Disturb’ to eliminate a sometimes irritating clicking static.shure mv88 box side

The Lightning connector is subject to Apple’s whims as to which new technology will be available at the next release, such as wireless charging.

If you’re using the Defender phone case you will find that the lightning plug on the Shure MV88 isn’t quite long enough. There are a few adapters on the market that are supposed eliminate that shortfall. However, I tried the NIUBEE Lightning Extender and it is still too short. There is another one on the market that I will try next if I can locate it on the web.

 

SHURE MV88 CONDENSER MICROPHONE – SUPPORT

Support is available via the Shure website at
www.shure.com/americas/support/service-repair.

 

SHURE MV88 CONDENSER MICROPHONE – PRICING

I’ve looked at all of the usual music vendors: Sweetwater Sound, Guitar Center, Musician’s Friend, Amazon, etc. The price for the Shure MV88 Condenser Microphone is pretty solid at $149.

 

SHURE MV88 CONDENSER MICROPHONE – MY OPINION

Unless you are just wanting to buy an audio/video camera combo, and assuming that you have an Apple iPod, iPad or iPhone, then this is the perfect accessory for reaching out into the YouTube world with some terrific audio backing you up!

The zippered storage box is plenty rugged and would be somewhat difficult to damage. Lots of configuration options give you the flexibility you need. The included windscreen practically eliminates the P’s that POP and the B’s that BOP!

My opinion is that the Shure MV88 Condenser Microphone is a great addition to an audio/visual arsenal!
 

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2 thoughts on “REVIEW Shure MV88 Condenser Microphone – Enhance iPhone Record Audio/Visual

    1. Mike

      Hi Mark!
      Thanks for stopping by with your question. The MV88 is for iOS Lightning and to my knowledge there is no model for Androids. To be honest, I don’t know if an adapter would work but I’m thinking it wouldn’t. Wish I had a more positive answer for you!

      All my best,
      Mike

      Reply

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