Shure MV51 vs MV5

Shure is one of the best options when you are in the market to buy a new microphone because this manufacturer carries some of the most versatile and reliable options, including for content creators such as with the Shure MV51 Vs MV5. These microphones are designed for digital content makers such as podcast or streaming in general. If you wonder which of the two will fit the most in your setup, see below about what they can offer and the comparison so we can shop wiser.

In this comparison, we are going to talk about:

  • Why Using USB Microphones
  • What are Shure MV51 and MV5
  • How are the Built Quality of Shure MV51 and MV5
  • How are the Sound Quality of Shure MV51 and MV5
  • What else Shure MV51 and MV5 can offer
  • How are the Experience with Shure MV51 and MV5
  • Shure MV51 Vs MV5

USB Microphones

Not all people will have the same purposes with their microphone and while in general microphone is just a tool to capture sound and transfer it somewhere else, each application will probably be better with different microphone and different setup. The subject of today’s comparison is USB microphone which is rising with the familiarity of digital content as well. Nowadays almost everyone can make their own content at home, in their home studio, with a USB microphone to help.

Since we are working with the computer, it just makes sense to have a tool that can work seamlessly with the main device and this is why a USB microphone is very convenient. Almost everyone can use them since they are plug-and-play; just pair them with your audio software or recording software and we are good to go. In some types of microphone such as Apogee MiC Vs Shure MV88 they can be even used with smaller smart devices.

Another advantage of USB microphones is the cost because while some of them can be expensive to buy, the full setup of a regular XLR mic can be more costly, depending on which you want to install. No matter which microphone you choose whether it is dynamic or condenser, we will need the audio interface in between, especially for condenser XLR which needs a phantom power to work. In general the cost and ease of use of USB mic will be more beneficial for most people.

Some people may wonder if a condenser microphone with USB connectivity is possible or not since we need phantom power to drive one. Actually, a USB mic has their own pre-amp in the unit and no, they don’t need an interface to provide phantom power to work anymore because the USB is already providing it. There is no need to add anything because everything is already packed in the mic itself which means the dynamic and condenser will be the same in terms of setup with a USB mic.

But, there is also disadvantage of this type of connectivity, specifically if you are a musician who will need to connect several inputs to record or stream together. With USB, since they are straightforward and can record anything, there is only so much you can do with such as simple setup. Unlike with a dedicated microphone and interface, as long as they have enough pre-amp to drive other inputs, we can use more than one mic or instruments as well in the setup.

Shure MV51 Shure MV5
Product Dimensions3.5 x 6.3 x 4.3 inches
4 x 5 x 4.5 inches
Shipping Weight1.75 pounds
10.1 ounces
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About Shure MV51 and MV5

There is no single system that can satisfy all users so it is always best to find what works best for yours. If you are here then we assume that USB microphone is the most suitable setup and since they are also getting better, audio quality wise is not something we often have to be concerned with. Plenty of good options out there so we’ll always have the most suitable product and besides the sound quality, we do recommend considering their features too.

Audio equipment manufacturers usually have a collection of microphones as well and when it comes to this transducer, Shure is always one of the best choices. There are actually tons to choose from but this American brand is just convenient to opt. They have a long history in manufacturing and designing lots of good quality audio products including microphones and while their XLR vocal mics are very popular, the USB line is not falling behind as well. In fact you can find at least one of the mics from Shure in various recommendation lists. 

This is because how good their products are and for those who consider ease of use or will be mainly using the microphone for doing voice overs, streaming, or recording at home, the Shure MV51 and MV5 are two ideal options to consider. Both are USB connected to the computer and the two are also very easy to use, it is simply plug-and-play so everyone will be able to get familiar right after. Audio software may vary however so the tweaking part will vary among users and what they are working with.

In comparison, the MV51 will be richer as well and this is why it is more expensive than the MV5. You can say that the MV5 is like a stripped version of the MV51 but, for some people this is probably what they are looking for. Price wise they are not far apart but still meaningful since you can use it to invest on something more important. Between Shure MV51 and MV5, if what you look for is only a straightforward microphone, the latter should be enough.

Shure MV51 and MV5 Design

Now let’s see the unit first before moving to what these microphones are capable of. First, from the build quality the MV5 is inferior to MV51. It may look like metal but the housing is actually plastic so it lacks the premium feel of MV51 which is very robust. On the accessory, since the two are USB mic you will have the USB cable included and another USB to lightning cable for connecting them to your iOS device. You will also get a mic stand with MV5 while the latter’s has a built-in folding stand.

In a glance you may think the MV5 is lacking in control but this mic has plenty of it. At the top of the mic there are LED lights to tell the status of the recording mode while the buttons are located at the back of the microphone, next to the headphone jack and power port. On MV51, everything is on sight except for the ports; we have the slider here for input level and volume, mute button, and a set of recording or microphone mode buttons.

Shure MV51 and MV5 Sound Quality

Now for the most important part, the sound quality of Shure MV51 and MV5 are pretty good and the fact that the two have built-in effects for their typical application is making these microphones just overall convenient to work with. They are the same cardioid mics with frequency response from 20Hz to 20kHz and bit depth of 16/24-bit. They also have the same sensitivity of -40dBFS and sampling rate of 44.1/48kHz. The overall sound is almost the same but not identical.

We do think the MV51 does sound better here on all modes, especially the speech one and in comparison the MV5 is somehow a little bit warmer than the former so the voice or speech doesn’t have the presence of MV51 as well as a bit harsh and not as refined. We personally like the flat mode in MV5 as it sounds more pleasant if you want to tweak it but for the instrument mode, they sound pretty good but we may have problems with how to place these mics when recording.

Shure MV51 and MV5 Features

Next for the features, as it has been mentioned above, between the Shure MV51 and MV5, it feels like the latter is a stripped down version of its big brother. The reason is we have 5 different modes here while the latter only have 3 presets. The modes you will get on the MV51 are speech, singing, instrument, recording in loud environment, and flat mode as opposed to only speech, instrument, and flat mode on MV5. Additionally this microphone doesn’t have gain level built in the unit.

This way gain is adjustable from the software or from your computer when using the MV5, limiting the ease of use. Thankfully, the two have built-in volume level and the same zero latency monitoring from the headphone jack so we can record and monitor at the same time. 

Shure MV51 and MV5 Convenience

Lastly for the ease of use, we do feel it is necessary to add a pop up filter with MV5 so it can sounds more comfortable. Setting up the two is very easy and the fact that we can use them with a smartphone or iPad makes the possibilities in setup types even wider, even for users who will travel with the mic. But, we are not a fan of the controls in MV5, just because they are a bit difficult to reach in case you will change them often.

Shure MV51 vs MV5

Both Shure MV51 and MV5 are good microphones but you can settle with one of them without much to sacrifice. The price gap justifies why MV51 is built like a tank and very robust as well as having better layout for the control. Everything feels natural in this microphone while also sounding very good for a wider application. In comparison the MV5 sounds good as well for the price range but we are not fond of the control layout and the plastic built quality.

- Apple MFi (Made for iPhone/iPod/iPad) Certified for direct connection to any iOS device without the need for any additional adapters or connection kits.
- 5 DSP Preset Modes (Speech, Singing, Flat, Acoustic Instrument, Loud)
- Automatically adjusts Gain, EQ, Compression and Limiting for optimal results
- Front panel touch controls for mode selection, headphone volume, microphone gain, and mute
- Custom-tuned microphone capsule provides superior audio
iOS and USB connectivity offers instant setup at home or on the go - no need for additional adapters or connection kits (Apple MFi certified)
- Record, edit, and share recordings from the free ShurePlus MOTIV iOS app
- Three onboard DSP preset modes quickly dial in the right sound, or use the free ShurePlus - MOTIV mobile app for enhanced recording and editing control over EQ, compression and more


We do think you can go well with any of them and in case you have to spend in a budget, the MV5 is already a good choice, we can add a pop up filter to improve the sound too but, if you want the better experience, we highly recommend the MV51.