A good microphone will capture good sound quality as well even if you are only going to speak on them, the audio matters to your listeners. Thankfully, we have lots to choose from, even on the basic setup such as with Shure MV5 Vs Blue Snowball. These podcast-friendly, voice-over ideal microphones are equally great options but probably for different users. If you are considering one of them, we are going to compare the two and let’s see which of them will be your better choice.
In this comparison, we are going to talk about:
- What are USB Microphones
- What are Shure MV5 and Blue Snowball
- How are the Built of Shure MV5 and Blue Snowball
- How are the Sound Quality of Shure MV5 and Blue Snowball
- How are the Recording Mode in Shure MV5 and Blue Snowball
- Are Shure MV5 and Blue Snowball Versatile
- Shure MV5 Vs Blue Snowball
Working with audio is complicated; there are tons of factors that affect how your voice will sound in the ears of the audience. But, regardless of the application, what we need to have first is probably the microphone. This transducer is the point where our voice or sound is converted into an electric signal to send somewhere else, such as the speaker or computer. We can adjust this signal to follow certain characters but we also need a good microphone to capture the decent audio quality as the first step.
What makes them different from each other is basically everything that made up the product itself so one microphone will not sound the same to the other, even when they are made by the same company. In modern days where people are connected to each other through the internet, the way we consume media also changes. We are more familiar with our smartphones or tablets than regular newspapers or magazines, because it is convenient and faster to know what happens, not only locally but also from the other side of the world.
Digital content is also growing rapidly and accessible by almost all of us. Here comes the USB microphone that wasn’t a thing back then but everywhere now. The way they are arranged to make it easier for users to utilize the equipment is a great advantage over the traditional design. Think of a regular microphone as an analog device while the other is a unit that has the analog-to-digital converter built into the system; this way we are bypassing the extra step an analog device needed to work with a digital device.
In application, an analog system is probably more suitable for a live application where the speaker is sending an audio to the audience. They can work with computers as well but as it has been mentioned above, we need the analog-to-digital converter such as audio interface. A USB microphone cuts this process and the need to invest on additional equipment by packing everything together in the housing so what we need is just plugging the mic and ready to work.
But, just like sometimes we need to have a driver for some equipment to let it communicate with the computer, there is a need for a driver to make some microphones work so it may require some installation steps first. We rarely see this old system now since most USB microphones are like regular computer peripherals such as mouse or keyboard with plug-and-play method. This is due to the USB codecs standard to either Mac OS or Windows.
Shure MV5 Blue Snowball
Product Dimensions 4 x 5 x 4.5 inches
6.42 x 6.14 x 10.51 inches
Shipping Weight 10.1 ounces
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About Shure MV5 and Blue Snowball
There are so many of them now and most companies that were creating audio equipment or regular microphones before will have one ready to use. Price wise they will vary as well so chances we can find the one fitting best in our budget range. Depending on your application, not only working with computers, some of them can be connected directly to your smartphones too when recording using the compact system which is great if you will often be traveling or recording demos on the go.
We can shop based on the product itself, the brand, price range, or popularity but if you have no specific companies to look for yet, we suggest sticking to well-known names like Shure and Blue instead. Not because they are popular but because they are trusted for the product quality so it can ensure the overall performance of the product. They are old names in the market with lots of promising microphones both on the more traditional and modern USB type.
Since digital content is a crowded market, expect to see several options as well from the two but for those who are considering to save their budget and want to optimize the value of their money, the Shure MV5 and Blue Snowball are two impressive microphones for the price. They are sold at sub $100 and can work directly with your computer without much fuss by being plug-and-play. They are designed for podcast or streaming but can be useful for music recording as well.
The two are table-mount type of microphone so before buying any of them it is wise to consider whether you will be able to place them on a table and still close enough to speak directly to either Shure MV5 and Blue Snowball, considering they are short height from the mount. Sound qualities are good for both microphones but probably not for the same users. They are best for voice overs and typical digital content or demo but not really made for music if this is your main application.
Shure MV5 and Blue Snowball Design
With an affordable microphone the first part we have to compromise is build quality and this is because none of their housings are made of metal but instead we have thick plastic here. They can feel cheap or light but the idea is to reduce the manufacturing cost so we understand the decision. Depending on your setup, the stands coming in the box can be too short and far away from your mouth but it is possible to change the stand and how you set up them.
Compared to the MV51 which is among Shure’s favorite podcast mics as well, this MV5 is less featured and has less control over the DSP processing but we still get three recording modes through a selection button on the back of the mic. Similarly you can find a switch on the other for selecting polar patterns. Coming in the box, we get a lighting cable as well along with the USB while the latter only gives as regular USB. Read also: Shure MV5 Vs Rode NT USB Mini.
Shure MV5 and Blue Snowball Sound Quality
Now for the most important part, let’s hear the sound of Shure MV5 and Blue Snowball but for starters we want to mention that the frequency response of Snowball is from 40 Hz to 18kHz instead of the typical 20Hz to 20kHz like the MV5. The Shure’s microphone however, only has cardioid design so it is not ideal if you will make an interview or capture sound room with the mic. As for the sampling they are at 44.1 with bit depth of 24-bit and 16 bit respectively.
The sound you will hear from these microphones will differ based on what setting you are recording at but for example on the speech option of MV5 and on the 1st setting of Snowball, they are already different. In general the MV5 will give you a deeper type of sound, the low and mid sound like being subdued while the latter is more present which is what you will get when changing to singing mode on the MV5. With these mics, the setting you will use is what affects the character of the sound itself.
Shure MV5 and Blue Snowball Features
As far as the ease of use, we do think the two don’t require much work besides changing the mount if you want the mic to get closer and do note none of their stands offer shock absorbing function so we prefer to mount them on different platforms. Between the Shure MV5 and Blue Snowball, MV5 is slightly richer in recording mode since you can choose between three different settings based on the application but you can do a similar tweak too with Snowball.
Besides the cardioid and omnidirectional, the number 2 setting is actually to cut 10Db. If you will be monitoring with the microphone, unfortunately only MV5 supports this function directly from the mic itself through the headphone jack so we can get zero-latency here with a volume switch as well on the back of the mic.
Shure MV5 and Blue Snowball Smart Device Compatibility
Lastly on the mobile application, both Shure MV5 and Blue Snowball are great choices for anyone working with the computer but the MV5 is even better, especially if you are using a simpler setup or need to travel with the mic regardless of the built quality. The MV5 comes with a lightning cable and can work iOS devices but we can get an adapter or another cable to make it work with Android based devices as well. Just plug the mic and if the LED is lit then it is properly powered.
Shure MV5 vs Blue Snowball
Both microphones are suitable for typical application and personally we like any of them but for singing probably the latter sounds better to our ears. What makes a difference is MV5 record at higher bit depth which separates the option from other similar affordable alternatives. It comes with DSP as well so we can choose from the available settings to match with the specific application. The best part is probably its MOTIV app for iOS which opens possibilities but with the same adapter, as long as your phone has enough voltage to drive the mic, we can use Snowball with the same setup as well.
You can go with any of the two because there is no bad option but, if you need to shave the budget then Snowball is actually cheaper but if you are looking for 24-bit recording, zero latency monitoring, and ability to use with iOS devices, MV5 is a simpler choice.