Laptop Mag Verdict
An entry-level USB the Shure MV5C is a solid option for on-the-go recording, but be careful, it's very lightweight and easy to knock over.
Easily to knock over
DSP can be aggressive
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The Shure MV5C is a super portable, lightweight USB and cross-platform compatible microphone that’s decent for on-the-go recording as it delivers quality audio making it a good value. However, the microphone is too lightweight and, like a baby taking its first steps, has a propensity to fall over easily.
Shure MV5C pricing and configurations
The Shure MV5C can be had for $99.00 and comes with a lightweight silver metal base; you connect the two via a silver metal ball screw. The unit I received is all black with the exception of the chrome Shure logo at the top front of the microphone. It is also available with a silver grill instead of the black.
Shure MV5C design
The MV5C is almost perfectly round with the grill having a retro appeal. It is quick to assemble: just screw the little silver ball into the mic to connect it to its metal base. It takes up very little space on your desk, or wherever you place it. However, due to how light it is, I found myself knocking it over repeatedly, so be wary of this potential issue. Behind the retro grill is a black foam windscreen covering the actual microphone, which helps prevent plosives while recording.
On the backside of the ball is a 3.5mm headphone jack for monitoring your audio and a micro USB port. There is also a mute button and a mode button so you can change the level of DSP and trigger the speech enhancement mode. The unit comes with a micro USB-to-USB Type-A cable and a micro USB-to-USB Type-C cable, which gives you plenty of connection options.
A chrome Shure logo is located on top in front of three lights, which indicate different DSP modes and when the mic is muted. Just below the light, you will find a headphone volume control slider built into the center rear of the round structure.
The Shure MV5C is tiny, toy-like and almost weightless, weighing in at 13.1 ounces and measuring just 4.1 x 5.1 x 4.4 inches. When you have Kraken-like hands as I do, it feels breakable but, I assure you, the main microphone housing is rather solid. It’s most comparable to Blue’s Snowball iCe, which weighs a hefty 1.1 pounds and measures 10.6 x 5.5 x 9.1 inches.
Shure MV5C microphone quality
Shure has a storied history in the recording industry of creating high-quality microphone products, and the MV5C proves the company can also make an affordable ultra-lightweight USB microphone with quality audio. The MV5C is a true plug-and-play mic that is ready to go from the moment it’s out of the box. Once connected, you’re ready to go. The MV5 MV5C's frequency range is 20Hz to 20kHz, and the mic offers 16 - 24-bit, 44.1 - 48kHz recording quality. It's compatible with Windows 7 and above, Mac OS X and above, and can be connected to iOS devices starting with the iPhone 5 and any phone with iOS 10 and up.
The MV5C uses two DSP (Digital Signal Processing) modes one for voice and then a mode without the DSP. That means the flat mode lacks EQ or compression, while the other modes create a certain amount. This set allows for a quick setup and creates a worry-free, plug-and-play environment. Shure is one of the few companies whose microphones offer both DSP and DSP-free signal options within the same microphone. It gives Shure a leg up on the competition.
The Speech Enhancement Mode does a great job providing automatic equalization and boosting vocal frequencies. This helps ensure crystal clear audio reproduction when you’re using it either to record or talk on Zoom call. I recorded a mock podcast and it reproduced the timbre in my voice nicely. I also noticed that it does a nice job of picking up my voice from about two feet away, which makes it a solid choice if you’re using it to interview another person. When recording, the lows in my voice were picked up subtly, and when playing back, the MV5C reproduced my low bass and sounded smooth with crisp detail.
The MV5C doesn't have any proprietary software however it's very plug and playable and it does work well with commonly used software suites like Garageband, OBS, and Audacity.
The Shure MV5C is a very solid USB microphone that records and produces clear quality audio at an acceptable price point of $99. The MV5C loses some points for being too lightweight; the mic falls over easier than a drunk relative on Christmas Eve. Then again, I do like the stand's curb appeal. Overall, the MV5 will take your podcasting and streaming into the professional stratosphere and it’s worth the investment. It’s a very solid option for traveling and podcasting on-the-go but you can get the Blue Snowball iCe for $50 less or the Blue Yeti Nano for the same price. which is sturdier and has a wider recording range.
Mark has spent 20 years headlining comedy shows around the country and made appearances on ABC, MTV, Comedy Central, Howard Stern, Food Network, and Sirius XM Radio. He has written about every topic imaginable, from dating, family, politics, social issues, and tech. He wrote his first tech articles for the now-defunct Dads On Tech 10 years ago, and his passion for combining humor and tech has grown under the tutelage of the Laptop Mag team. His penchant for tearing things down and rebuilding them did not make Mark popular at home, however, when he got his hands on the legendary Commodore 64, his passion for all things tech deepened. These days, when he is not filming, editing footage, tinkering with cameras and laptops, or on stage, he can be found at his desk snacking, writing about everything tech, new jokes, or scripts he dreams of filming.