Recording - April 2016 - 56

Songwriter Recording Solutions

Reviews by Mike Metlay

We've come a long way from the early days of plugging microphones into an iPhone's headset jack and hoping for the best.
Today's music recording gear for iOS delivers high quality and lots of features for the money, with results comparable to those of
gear meant for laptop rigs. In this edition of iOS Music Tools, we're looking at two interfaces and two mics that are ideal for recording songwriters that want to capture their ideas with a good enough sound for professional use.-MM

Shure MOTIV MV51 and ShurePlus MOTIV
$199; app is free; www.shure.com

Shure's new MOTIV line of mobile-friendly recording
solutions includes a clip-on lavalier, two cardioid desktop mics, a stereo mic head that attaches directly to an
iPhone or iPad, and a standalone audio interface. Today
we're looking at the MOTIV MV51, an all-in-one solution
for basic iOS (or Mac/PC) recording. It offers mono
recording, audio playback for headphones, and built-in
DSP to help you quickly optimize your sound.
Mobile recording devices tend to fall into two categories-"go-anywhere" and "rugged." Manufacturers
either build for the lightest possible weight while (hopefully) maintaining a reasonable amount of sturdiness, or they
design products to survive anything-and to heck with the
fact that they make your laptop bag a burden. Shure definitely falls into the latter camp with the MV51. It's over a
pound of solid metal that you could easily use to defend
yourself in a bar brawl. (Don't ask me how I know this.)
Inside the neo-retro casing (with a kickstand that converts to a mic-stand mount), there's a cardioid electret
condenser mic capsule with a frequency response that's
relatively flat, with broad dips centered around 1500
Hz and 3500 Hz and a pretty hefty peak from 5 to 8
kHz, married to a DSP-enabled interface with gain control, headphone level control, and five recording Modes
controlled from a touch panel with indicator LEDs. The
rear of the unit has a minijack for headphones and a
USB Micro-B connector; the MV51 comes with two such
cables, one with a USB-A plug for Macs and PCs, the
other with a Lightning plug for iOS devices.
The MV51 is Core Audio and USB class
compliant; you plug it in and it works with no
drivers needed. Touch the mic icon to mute the
mic, touch it again to unmute. The horizontal
ribbon control sets mic gain (green LEDs) or
headphone level (orange LEDs). The headphone level control is active when you touch the
headphone icon; the amp provides nice clear
sound, but it favors lower-impedance headphones and doesn't get super-loud. The MV51
can record at 16 or 24 bits, 44.1 or 48 kHz.
Touch the Mode button to cycle through the
different options-Speech, Singing, Acoustic,
Loud, and Flat. The first four are settings that
Shure has optimized for different applications:
podcasts, vocals, quiet acoustic music like guitar
or piano, or loud amplified instruments/drums.
56

RECORDING April 2016

The last setting, Flat, removes all processing, and when activated,
you quickly discover that the MV51 is a really sweet little mic-its
proximity effect tends to really kick in when you get within a few inches for that sexy broadcaster voice, and off-axis sound is fairly smooth
out to about 90º or so to the sides. If you give it room, plosives aren't
really a problem, and the same can be said for sibilance.
If you're curious about what these Modes are doing, you can get
a glimpse of them by using the free ShurePlus MOTIV app. This is a
simple mono recorder that also lets you alter the mic's settings: gain
in 1.5 dB steps up to +36 dB, limiter On/Off, compressor set to
Off/Light/Heavy, and 5-band graphic EQ. The EQ settings sound different for every Mode, but they're not
reflected in the app when you select one-unlike the
Limiter and Compressor settings, which are. The five
bands are 200 Hz, 350 Hz, 1.5 kHz, 6 kHz, and 10
kHz, settable in 2 dB steps to ±8 dB.
By the way, this isn't all the app does, but to take
advantage of its more advanced settings, you need the
MV88 stereo mic ($149). When using that mic, the app
can control polar pattern, stereo width, cut low-frequency
rumble/wind noise, and flip the stereo image (so you
don't have to worry about which way your phone is
pointed when you're shooting videos).
The MV51's DSP sounds quite good; the Limiter is particularly effective at preventing overloads with any but
the loudest peaks, and the EQ frequencies are musically
relevant if a bit coarse. If you like the idea of this sort of
control but want to use your own mic, Shure makes the


http://www.shure.com

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Recording - April 2016

Contents
Recording - April 2016 - Intro
Recording - April 2016 - Cover1
Recording - April 2016 - Cover2
Recording - April 2016 - 1
Recording - April 2016 - 2
Recording - April 2016 - 3
Recording - April 2016 - 4
Recording - April 2016 - 5
Recording - April 2016 - Contents
Recording - April 2016 - 7
Recording - April 2016 - 8
Recording - April 2016 - 9
Recording - April 2016 - 10
Recording - April 2016 - 11
Recording - April 2016 - 12
Recording - April 2016 - 13
Recording - April 2016 - 14
Recording - April 2016 - 15
Recording - April 2016 - 16
Recording - April 2016 - 17
Recording - April 2016 - 18
Recording - April 2016 - 19
Recording - April 2016 - 20
Recording - April 2016 - 21
Recording - April 2016 - 22
Recording - April 2016 - 23
Recording - April 2016 - 24
Recording - April 2016 - 25
Recording - April 2016 - 26
Recording - April 2016 - 27
Recording - April 2016 - 28
Recording - April 2016 - 29
Recording - April 2016 - 30
Recording - April 2016 - 31
Recording - April 2016 - 32
Recording - April 2016 - 33
Recording - April 2016 - 34
Recording - April 2016 - 35
Recording - April 2016 - 36
Recording - April 2016 - 37
Recording - April 2016 - 38
Recording - April 2016 - 39
Recording - April 2016 - 40
Recording - April 2016 - 41
Recording - April 2016 - 42
Recording - April 2016 - 43
Recording - April 2016 - 44
Recording - April 2016 - 45
Recording - April 2016 - 46
Recording - April 2016 - 47
Recording - April 2016 - 48
Recording - April 2016 - 49
Recording - April 2016 - 50
Recording - April 2016 - 51
Recording - April 2016 - 52
Recording - April 2016 - 53
Recording - April 2016 - 54
Recording - April 2016 - 55
Recording - April 2016 - 56
Recording - April 2016 - 57
Recording - April 2016 - 58
Recording - April 2016 - 59
Recording - April 2016 - 60
Recording - April 2016 - 61
Recording - April 2016 - 62
Recording - April 2016 - 63
Recording - April 2016 - 64
Recording - April 2016 - 65
Recording - April 2016 - 66
Recording - April 2016 - 67
Recording - April 2016 - 68
Recording - April 2016 - 69
Recording - April 2016 - 70
Recording - April 2016 - 71
Recording - April 2016 - 72
Recording - April 2016 - Cover3
Recording - April 2016 - Cover4
https://www.nxtbook.com/musicmaker/musicmaker/recording_202106
https://www.nxtbook.com/musicmaker/musicmaker/recording_202105
https://www.nxtbook.com/musicmaker/musicmaker/recording_202104
https://www.nxtbook.com/musicmaker/musicmaker/recording_202103
https://www.nxtbook.com/musicmaker/musicmaker/recording_202102
https://www.nxtbook.com/musicmaker/musicmaker/recording_202101
https://www.nxtbook.com/musicmaker/musicmaker/recording_202012
https://www.nxtbook.com/musicmaker/musicmaker/recording_202011
https://www.nxtbook.com/musicmaker/musicmaker/recording_202010
https://www.nxtbook.com/musicmaker/musicmaker/recording_202009
https://www.nxtbook.com/musicmaker/musicmaker/recording_202008
https://www.nxtbook.com/musicmaker/musicmaker/recording_202007
https://www.nxtbook.com/musicmaker/musicmaker/recording_202006
https://www.nxtbook.com/musicmaker/musicmaker/recording_20205
https://www.nxtbook.com/musicmaker/musicmaker/recording_202004
https://www.nxtbook.com/musicmaker/musicmaker/recording_202003
https://www.nxtbook.com/musicmaker/musicmaker/recording_202002
https://www.nxtbook.com/musicmaker/musicmaker/recording_202001
https://www.nxtbook.com/musicmaker/musicmaker/recording_201912
https://www.nxtbook.com/musicmaker/musicmaker/recording_201911
https://www.nxtbook.com/musicmaker/musicmaker/recording_201910
https://www.nxtbook.com/musicmaker/musicmaker/recording_201909
https://www.nxtbook.com/musicmaker/musicmaker/recording_201908
https://www.nxtbook.com/musicmaker/musicmaker/recording_201907
https://www.nxtbook.com/musicmaker/musicmaker/recording_201906
https://www.nxtbook.com/musicmaker/musicmaker/recording_201905
https://www.nxtbook.com/musicmaker/musicmaker/recording_201904
https://www.nxtbook.com/musicmaker/musicmaker/recording_201903
https://www.nxtbook.com/musicmaker/musicmaker/recording_201902
https://www.nxtbook.com/musicmaker/musicmaker/recording_201901
https://www.nxtbook.com/musicmaker/musicmaker/recording_201812
https://www.nxtbook.com/musicmaker/musicmaker/recording_201811
https://www.nxtbook.com/musicmaker/musicmaker/recording_201810
https://www.nxtbook.com/musicmaker/musicmaker/recording_201809
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201808
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201807
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201806
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201805
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201804
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201803
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201802
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201801
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201712
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201711
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201710
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201709
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201708
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201707
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201706
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201705
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201704
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201703
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201702
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201701
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201612
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201611
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201610
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201609
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201608
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201607
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201606
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201605
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201604
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201603
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201602
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201601
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201512
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201511
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201510
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201509
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201508
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201507
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201506
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201505
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201504
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201503
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201502
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201501
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201412
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201411
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201410
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201409
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201408
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201407
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201406
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201405
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201404
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201403
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201402
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201401
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201312
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201311
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201310
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201309
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201308
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201307
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201306
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201305
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201304
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201303
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201302
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201301
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201212
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201211
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201210
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201209
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201208
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201207
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201206
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201205
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201204
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201203
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201202
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201201
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201112
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201111
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201110
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201109
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201108
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201107
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201106
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201105
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201104
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201103
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201102
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201101
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201012
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201011
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201010
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201009
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201008
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201007
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201006
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201005
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201004
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201003
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201002
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_201001
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_200912
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_200911
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/recording_200910
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/musicmaker/nxtd
https://www.nxtbookmedia.com