The Shure MV88 is the best microphone to use when shooting video with your iPhone. It's MFi certified, has a built-in Lightning connector, and provides crisp, clear, professional-sounding audio.
Our Pick: Shure MV88
The best external iPhone microphone for most people
The Shure MV88 comes from one of the most trusted brands in audio equipment and it's a professional-grade accessory at a fairly reasonable price. It's the perfect audio accessory for both the professional and the amateur.
Who should buy this microphone
The Shure MV88 is for anyone who wants professional-level audio with the video they shoot on their iPhone. Whether you're trying to make a music video for YouTube or are filming a proper TV show or movie (it's been done!), the MV88 provides you with the presets and components necessary for recording superb audio that is much better than anything you'd get from the built-in iPhone microphone.
Is it a good time to buy this microphone?
Yes. Microphone technology, while improving slowly over the years, is already excellent, and the MV88 is perfect for the current iteration of the iPhone, past versions, iPads, and any future device with a Lightning port.
7 reasons to buy
- Compact design
- Trusted brand
- 5 presets for speech, singing, flat, acoustic instrument, and loud
- Automatically adjust EQ, compression, and limiting
- 90-degree hinge lets you adjust for ideal mic position
- Connects directly via Lightning port — no cables necessary
- All-metal design
- Very well-reviewed across the board
- Easy-to-swallow price tag at $149
2 reasons not to buy
- There are cheaper alternatives if you don't need the highest quality
- Longer design might be a bit awkward in some situations
Most people can benefit from a quality microphone when shooting iPhone video
The Shure MV88 has everything you could really want in a shotgun mic for your iPhone or iPad. It's 20Hz-20kHz means it can pick up warm, rich low end sound, a present mid-range, and crisp, clear highs. This way, everything from speech to acoustic instruments sounds greats. If you're thinking of making a go at acoustic covers on YouTube, then this is perfect for you. If you're wanting to capture better audio at a concert, it's the way to go.
The adjustable gain is perfect for the quieter moments, when you want to capture every sound, or if you just want to grab room noise to go in the background of a video. The MV88 has an all-metal construction, so you know it can keep up with you wherever you go.
Alternatives to the Shure MV88
The Apogee MiC Plus is an excellent alternative to the Shure MV88 that lets you set down the micrphone to record. It also has a higher gain so that you can capture even the quietest sounds or dialogue from further away, and its headphone output features a Blend feature that removes all latency.
The PowerDeWise is a very inexpensive lav option, perfect for interviews, speeches, and YouTube videos. It features a clip that's easy to put on, a 59-inch cable, and it's only $22. You will, however, need to use the Lighting to headphone adapter if you have an iPhone 7 or newer.
The Sennheiser ClipMic is a high-quality lav option that is perfect for anyone looking for the best Lightning clip-on mic available. Its price tag is steep at $200, but it connects directly to your iPhone or iPad, and the companion app makes recording and organizing clips super easy.
For most people, the Shure MV88 is the best all-around microphone to use when shooting iPhone or iPad video. It's adjustable, has a wide frequency response, is sturdily built, and is relatively affordable.
The team that worked on this guide
Derek Kessler is Managing Editor for Mobile Nations, where he covers tech across the spectrum. He got his start a decade ago writing about Palm and hasn't stopped since. In his desk drawer you will find way too many phones. Derek also does a fair bit of technical work (including this fancy page); he's @derekakessler on Twitter, if you dare.
Mick Symons is the Duty Editor for Mobile Nations and fancies himself a musician and comedian. Keep dreaming, Mick.
Cella Lao Rousseau writes for iMore on social and photography. She's a true crime enthusiast, best-selling horror author, lipstick collector, buzzkill, and Sicilian. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram: @hellorousseau.