Marshall MXL V88 Review
Marshall has created its MXL line of condenser microphones with the express goal of providing quality, multi-purpose products at budget prices. The MXL V88 is marketed as a studio and broadcast cardioid microphone. Its large diaphragm and small frame (5 ½ inches high) distinguish it from other, more prominent large diaphragm condensers in its class, but its size gives it placement flexibility, a considerable advantage since it lends itself to more versatile functionality.
The V88’s solid construction makes it more likely to successfully endure the rigors of both studio and live applications. The microphone works well in pairs for stereo capture and it performs well as a vocal microphone. The MXL V88 has a very low noise floor, making it a good choice as a broadcast microphone. Whether you whisper into it or scream into it, the V88 is made to capture the specific nuances of the human voice. It offers a beautiful and warm vocal sound, very natural, without being too bright.
The MXL V88 features a nickel-plated body, 32mm cardioid capsule that does a great job capturing source sounds at the front of the microphone while cancelling and minimizing noise that may be picked up from the front and the back of the microphone. The V88 has a 6-micron, gold-sputtered diaphragm and like Marshall’s other MXL series microphones, the V88 is wired internally with Mogami cable. With a frequency range of 20Hz -20kHz, the V88 has a wider range than some of MXL’s other condenser microphones including the MXL 770. Its max SPL is 138dB and it has a low self-noise rating of 14 dBA.
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The MXL V88 is has off-axis rejection which will minimize vocal bleed and background noise and feedback, making it a superb microphone for live applications. The MXL V88s outperformed the MXL 770 In a studio setting being used for stereo drum overheads, and did a much better job picking up distinguishable lows frequencies. They offer a lot of warmth during vocal applications and do a great job of reproducing a more authentic and natural sound than its 770 counterpart. Still, I think the best use of the V88s would be as a pair of room microphones.
You can the Marshall MXL V88 microphone for around $120 and comes with a three-year manufacturer’s warranty. Each microphone is shipped in a plastic carrying case and comes with a shock mount and booklet with suggestions on best microphone placement for different instruments. With that, the full, personable sound the MXL V88 offers certainly makes it worth checking out.
-By John Redick
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Checkout the Marshall MXL V88 in action
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Make sure you check out my other reviews on the Marshall MXL line of condenser microphones: