Shure MV88 iOS Condenser Mic Review / Test

Today is the second installment of my Shure iOS microphone review series. Today, I reviewed the lightning adapter microphone, the Shure MV88

This microphone is exclusively an iOS microphone, as it can only connect directly through the lightning port.

Currently, you are able to have headphones connected to your iPhone while recording, but with the removal of the headphone jack, this may become an issue that Shure has to address in an updated MV88 that includes a 3.5mm Headphone port. 

If you are interested in this microphone, it will set you back $150 on Amazon

What's In the Box

  1. Microphone
  2. Pop Filter / Wind Screen
  3. Carrying / Storage Case
  4. 3.5mm Extender for Headphones
  5. Documentation
  6. 2 Year Warranty

Specifications

  1. Frequency Response: Not Listed
  2. Polar Pattern: Cardioid & Bi-Directional
  3. Recording Quality: 24 bit / 48kHz

Performance / Features

The build quality of this mic is decent. It is still metal, but it does not have any substantial weight to it. This is most likely by design since it is a traveling microphone. Regardless, I personally prefer mics to have some nice weight to them. The mic also only offers 90-degrees of motion, so if you want to point the mic in the opposite direction, you will need to unplug and flip it over which will cause the mic to cover part of the 3.5mm headphone jack.

There are no controls on the microphone, everything is handled through the app. The app offers 5 DSP Presets:

  • Speech
  • Singing
  • Acoustic
  • Loud Performance
  • Flat

You are also able to switch between many polar patterns

  • XY - 60-75-90-105-120-135
  • Cardioid
  • Bi Directional
  • Raw Midside

There is also a control to add a limiter, compressor, or wind reducer. 

As far as performance, I think it's a big improvement over the iPhone's / iPad's internal microphone. It sounded great while recording guitar/singing simultaneously. It provided clear audio and a nice stereo sound. 

Pros

  • Provides great sound compared to internal microphone
  • Extremely portable
  • Lots of control options

Cons

  • Only 90-degrees of motion
  • Does not have built in 3.5mm headphone jack (may be issue on iPhone 7)

Conclusion

This may seem like it is an expensive device, but one you start to analyze what you're getting for the $150, you will find that it is a great deal. It is much like getting 3 different microphones and a mobile DAW. You have an XY mic, a Cardioid Mic, and a Mid Side microphone. You also get a DAW that allows you to add compression, limiters, and wind reduction as well as edit your audio. 

It's also important to note that if you are new to recording and don't have a full understanding of the process, they offer 5 presets to help get you started. 

If you are stuck using an iOS device to record your podcast, film your band's show or comedy show, or even vlog, I think this microphone is a great option to improve your audio so you can have a better quality video that you can critique or share.

If you have any additional questions about this microphone, leave them in the comments on this site or on the youtube channel, and I will try to reply ASAP. 

Buy it on Amazon
US: http://amzn.to/2d96uJd
UK: http://amzn.to/2cIGHrd

Do You Even Comic: Blankets

Bundle up and ready for some heavy feels in this month’s Do You Even Comic with Blankets by Craig Thompson.

 

The History

blankets07.jpg

This book is an autobiographical graphic novel published by Top Shelf (a company I would love to have my work published by) created by Craig Thompson. He actually began the graphic novel back in 1999 but wasn’t published until 2003. Over the past decade the graphic novel has gone on to receive 3 Harvey Awards and 2 Eisner's including best artist/writer in 2004.

 

The Story

As I mentioned, the book is autobiographical and follows a young Craig Thompson on his coming of age journey. The story blends family relationships and discovering love as a kid.

 

Craig begins his story by describing his relationship with his brother while growing up in Wisconsin. His childhood is rough as he describes bullies who harsh him at school and a babysitter who sexually abused both he and his brother. The story continues and follows Craig as he goes to meet a girl he had been exchanging letters with.  When they meet, he experiences feelings of both love and guilt and realizes that he is conflicted by all of his emotions.

 

The struggle is relatable to many people but it is the art that helps transfer you into those scenes with Craig. You feel Craig’s heart on the pages by the way the panel and ink work are done in this book.


 

Why this book?

Why? Simple. It’s a book about relationships, and as a writer that’s my main focus in my own work. Even more than that, the book has a very relatable subject. As someone raised very christian, growing up with conflicting ideas, I connected with this book in many ways. I am a younger brother and I consider myself a hopeless romantic and have dealt with my own beliefs and faith growing up in a strong christian family. I think it is a book many people can relate to because we all have a coming of age moment  when we begin to learn who we are, and it’s those small moments, intimate moments that shape us.

 

This is a must read.


Book:

  • Blankets

Samson G Track

Today I'm covering a unique item from one of my favorite microphone companies; The Samson G Track GMU1 USB Condenser Microphone.

The aspect of this microphone that sets it apart from other usb microphones lies in the fact that it functions as a USB microphone as well as a USB interface for your guitar/bass etc. 

If you are interested in this microphone, it will set you back $85 on Amazon

What's In the Box

  1. Microphone
  2. Mic Mount
  3. 5/8" to 3/8" Mic Stand Adapter
  4. USB Cable
  5. 3.5mm to RCA Cable
  6. (2) RCA to 1/4" Adapters
  7. 3.5mm to 1/4" Cable
  8. 3.5mm to 1/4" headphone cable
  9. Documentation

Specifications

  1. Frequency Response: 20Hz - 16kHz
  2. Polar Pattern: Super Cardioid
  3. Sensitivity: -40dB
  4. SPL: 132 dB
  5. Recording Quality: 16 bit / 48kHz

Performance / Features

The build quality of this microphone is pretty good. It is an all metal construction and it has some nice weight to it. After removing it from the microphone mount a few times, it does feel like the internals were a little bit loose, so I would be careful with this microphone.

On the bottom of the microphone you have three I/O ports. The first is a 3.5mm input, which is designed for guitar input, or rca input, which is why they provided cables in the box. The second is a 3.5mm headphone output. The last port is the USB port to connect the microphone to your computer.

On the front of the microphone there are two switches. The first switch is the Input selector which allows you to switch between "Mono instrument / mono mic" and "stereo instrument". If you're recording the microphone at all, you will need to utilize the mono instrument/mono mic setting. If you're recording using the stereo RCA cable, you'll need to utilize the "stereo instrument" setting.

Beneath these switches you have three dials. The first dial is the headphone volume control which is self explanatory. The second is the instrument volume, which will increase/decrease the 3.5mm instrument input gain. The last dial is the microphone gain control which will obviously increase/decrease the microphones gain.

As far as the performance of the microphone, it was nothing to write home about. The voice, electric guitar, and acoustic guitar all sounded like they lacked life. They simply sounded boring and flat. I'm sure that this could be partially remedied by some slight EQ & Compression, but it still won't sound amazing. 

Pros

  • Sounds decent
  • Functions as an interface/microphone
  • Relatively cheap for what you're getting

Cons

  • Audio sounds flat/dull
  • Excessively noisy preamp at 60% gain

Conclusion

This is a pretty cool device, however I don't think it will work for everyone. If you're looking to podcast or do voice overs, I don't think that this mic is designed well for you. There are too many options, it doesn't sound that great, and it picks up a bit of background noise from the keyboard.

If you're looking for studio quality audio, once again I don't recommend this mic. It simply does not provide good enough sound quality. The audio just sounded dull, and like you're not in the room with musician.

If you're looking to demo some music out or do some basic guitar covers/singing covers for youtube, I think that this is a perfect mic to test the waters and see how you like it. It's cheap and provides you all the necessary tools to connect your electric guitar while singing and will allow you the opportunity to see if you like making the videos. If you do, then you can consider upgrading to a higher quality interface and microphone.

If you have any additional questions about this microphone, leave them in the comments on this site or on the youtube channel, and I will try to reply ASAP. 

Buy it Amazon
US: http://amzn.to/2cnGaMt
UK: http://amzn.to/2cWb5C9

BSP-036: Why I Love The Big Bang Theory

00:00 - Intro
00:46 - New Guitar Gear!!!
06:38 - Behind Schedule / New Video Format!
08:20 - I DID NOTHING!!!
10:15 - New Amazon Echo Dot
12:29 - Kindle & Project Beta
14:33 - Why I Love The Big Bang Theory
18:33 - The Avett Brothers “Emotionalism"
21:05 - Raspberry Pi 2 & Ubutu
23:30 - SHURE MV88
25:30 - Outro

On episode 36 of the BSP, I talk about some near guitar gear I just recently got as well as some suggestions I have for guitar players. I then talk about how I have recently changed my video format for reviews and how it has added additional production time to each review. 

Then i briefly talk about a new amazon echo, a book I’m reading, and the reason I love The Big Bang Theory. To finish off the podcast, I talk about an album I really enjoy, my plans for my raspberry pi 2 and the MV88 that I tested out this week.

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http://www.geeksrising.com

RCCCC: From The Odyssey to ODY-C: Re-Making Myths with Fraction and Ward

Sunday, September 12:00-12:50 pm

Topic:

Matt Fraction and Christian Ward have re-written one of the fundamental epic myths of Western culture in ODY-C- and in the process have produced a book that looks and reads like nothing else on the stands. Join the creators in this discussion on this book.

Panelists:

  • Matt Fraction, Christian Ward, Professor Ben Saunders 

Discussion:

Let us jump straight into this discussion by saying I think Matt Fraction is a powerhouse of a writer and a real inspiration for anyone looking to write in comics.

Ben Saunders the moderator of the panel starts by asking Matt why he wanted to work with Christian Ward (Note this quickly became a cute back and forth of compliments to each other). Matt basically concluded with saying he saw Christian Ward on all these projects just wanted to take his work and really let it out, he wanted Christian the "stallion" to let loose and be epic because this story was going to be epic. By epic I mean issue 1 came out with an 8 page foldout image.

Once the egos of each artist was stroked the rest of the panel was discussion the approach of adapting The Odyssey into a futuristic female lead version in ODY-C. For those of you who don't know First was Matt Fractions approach to writing the story, ODY-C is written in Matt's best attempt to write dactylic hexameter (closes to Homer's Odyssey) which basically no one uses anymore and add a level of creativity that ad to telling this epic tale. I can't explain how thorough Matt is when it comes to writing and on this book he wanted to go all out.

In Matt and Christian's version of the story Matt wanted to be able to tell a tale his daughter could read and believe in the heroes (not the male misogynistic tales from the past) so the world is gender  bent and even the gods are androgynous(turns out the story is violent and his daughter can't read it but that was the start for him).

Briefly, let's discuss Christian Wards epic art for the book. His goal was to top him self each issue and expand and create and reinvent the page every issue. The book feature huge sprawling scenes and panels that look like art that could hang on a wall. My favorite thing he did  is the gods; In this book the gods stand above the panels and outside the world of the book almost breaking the fourth wall( they also don't speak like the rest of the book) they act on their on and its such an ingenious was to tackle gods in this myth.

Full disclosure I read ODY-C and couldn't get into it because its hard to follow there is a learning curve but after this panel I want to read it and try because it was an amazing creation these guys have made.

 

RCCCC: The Convention

Rose City is a relatively smaller convention for being such a Comic based city.

The attendance for the convention has been growing for years with 32k attendees last year and around 50k this year. But with guests like Stan Lee and Jon Bernthal its easy to see why.

That all being said here are some photos of my experience at the convention (click through the pics):

RCCCC: Spotlight on Greg Rucka

Saturday, September 10th 1:30-2:20 pm 

Topic:

Multiple award winning writer currently writing such blockbuster hits like Wonder Woman, Lazarus, Stumptown and Black Magick. Wonder what makes one of the best writers in comics tick? Come find out.

Panelists:

  • Greg Rucka

Discussion:

First things first, I felt so lucky to see a panel spot lighting this man, his work in comics has been huge and hearing how he tackles projects was like getting to see how a magic trick is done.

This panel featured Greg Rucka being interviewed by one of his closest friends (whose name escapes me). The panel starts by addressing that a few years back Greg has a public outing when he left DC comics, but since then he has come by to them and as mentioned currently writes Wonder Woman. This was brought up because admittedly Greg writes from anger or rather he can and often has written from anger and currently his Wonder Woman book is hopeful. Greg Rucka explains just cause I have and can write from anger doesn't mean I am angry all the time.

Greg then spend a majority of the panel explain his approach to working on the current run in Wonder Woman for DC.  The most important thing isn't being continuity driven but is simply on how you approach the character (this goes for any superhero story). The approach for Wonder Woman is to ask what is she and what make Dianna tick.  Greg says the "wonder" in her name isn't for wonderful but for the true meaning of wonderment and curiosity, with that being the prime factor it was easy to make Dianna decisions and make her level her paradise to save the world and wonder how everything else works. 

The panel continued but in that moment when Greg is on stage talking about the detail of Wonder Woman ( a fiction character) he revealed just the level of care and how serious he takes writing and that carries on into all of his amazing works.

This was a an amazing 50 minutes. I highly recommend picking up any and all  of his work. As a creator working his way up from self publishing my own comics to working in the industry I strive to understand and learn on how to create better stories. Greg Rucka looks at fiction and makes it real, he take principals of life and applies them to all stories he tells and like a good writer he studies and researches. The level of care he has is what I aim to do in my own writing.

RCCCC: Queer Comics Take Over the World

Saturday September 10th, 11:00-11:50 am

Topic:

 Join LGBTQ comics editors and creators in a discussion about mainstream and indie queer comics and the importance of queer representation.

Panelists:

Taneka Stotts (Beyond), Ari Yarwood (Oni Press Managing Editor), Genue Revuelta (Love & Sprockets), Terry Blas (Briar Hollow), and D.J. Kirkland (Black Mage).

Discussion:

This was one panel I did not want to miss ( and obviously I didn't) but it is important right now with the changes that are happening in the industry for more diversity that I got a chance to hear from some creators who are actively in the industry.

The panel we over a great many problems with the current climate of diversity in media let alone LGBTQ. I was able to get a few tips and messages from this panel that truly speak to what creators are looking for in the industry.

First Taneka Stotts mentions, what not to do when writing, "Don't think having ONE conversation with a trans, gay, black person means you're an expert on their experience." As someone who is a straight white male, I take this message to heart because when it comes to creating I don't want to come off wrong of that I know everything.

In my opinion the most important piece of information I got form these wonderful panelist about the current climate in the industry was Taneka saying, "Pay attention to indie creators who already make queer comics." I don't want these huge companies to just just of boxes of "diversity" to reach some status, instead use the amazing diverse creators already out there.

Last tips about creating stories from LGBTQ creators and editors:

  • make the stories about stuff you like and want to tell and inject it with your uniqueness
  • Some times its about being a BOLD LGBTQ book and others its a BOOK with LGBTQ content

I think its great to hear creators actually speak about their content and remind everyone that stories have diversity its that simple.

BSP-035: Apple’s (Event) & Orange’s (Amps)

00:00 - Intro
00:55 - I’m an Idiot
01:37 - Guitar Gear! New Amp & Research!
07:45 - What I’ve Been Testing - Shure MVi
10:05 - Mario on iOS
11:48 - iWork Real Time Collaboration
12:35 - Apple Watch
16:12 - iPhone 7 Announcement
27:25 - Outro

On episode 35 of the BSP, I talk a lot longer than expected on guitar amps, and my history with guitar amps. I then talk about the amps I am going to be getting and the reasoning behind it as well as dream guitar amps.

Then I cover the apple event ranging from Mario on iOS, to real time collaboration, the apple watch, and lastly the iPhone 7…and of course that discussion includes the removal of the headphone jack!

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RCCCC: Editing Comics: Where the magic happens!

Saturday, September 10th 10:30-11:20am

Topic:

With the shifting landscape of comics today, this is your invaluable guide to breaking into the industry and working with a powerhouse publisher. Join Dark Horse Comics editors for a rare behind-the-scenes look and share the secrets of building a successful comic.

Panelists:

  • Katii O'Brien, Cardner Clark, Freddye Miller and Hannah Means-Shannon

Discussion:

The panelist at the panel are all current editors at Dark Horse and wanted to share what they look for when taking the creators work and getting it to the next stage of publishing work.

The first thing that was address is making sure the creator is knowledgeable about comics and more importantly story. In order to make a comic you must understand story structure. This being said they suggested that creators read, and read outside of just comics. Read three act plays  and scripts to understand how story and plot unfold.

Next part was with the comic itself. When creators (artists and writers) are working on a book make sure the scene avoids "Double Action" a term used when a character is described as doing two things at once. Double Action works in film but not on the comic's page. The editors continued to describe and emphasize the importance of telling a solid story and making sure the book has flow.

The last point addressed at the brief panel was the "Market" by that they mean who is the audience of the book. Before any approval by editors they must first know; who,how and where to market and promote a book. The creators when pitching should already understand who they aim to please for the market (while still acknowledging its can be unpredictable). But companies and the editor cannot take a project until they know how they can sell or market and best showcase the stories they want to share.

I wish the panel was four hours and they could discuss even more about the marketing of a book or common problems that occur with new project but I am happy to take the information provided and apply it to my own creations.

Rode Procaster Broadcast Dynamic Mic Review / Test

I've been waiting months to do this review, and I can't wait to put it up against it's USB counterpart in a future Versus Series. But for today, we're talking about the Rode Procaster. This is a Dynamic Broadcast XLR microphone, not to be confused with the Rode Podcaster, which is the USB version of this microphone.

This is a dynamic microphone, so it does not require phantom power. However, it does have a somewhat low output level, so you will end up turning your gain up relatively high. Therefore, I recommend picking up a Cloudlifter, if you plan on getting this mic.

If you are interested in this microphone, it will set you back $230 on Amazon

What's In the Box

  1. Microphone
  2. Mic Mount
  3. 5/8" to 3/8" Mic Stand Adapter
  4. Carrying Case
  5. Documentation
  6. 10-Year Warranty
  7. A Damn Sticker!!!

Specifications

  1. Frequency Response: 75Hz - 18kHz
  2. Polar Pattern: Cardioid
  3. Sensitivity: -56dB
  4. Impedance: 320-Ohms

Performance / Features

This is how microphones should be built. This thing has an all metal construction, and has some REALLY nice weight to it. You can feel how substantial it is, and in all honesty, you could probably fight off an intruder and it would still work. The 10-year warranty, tells me how much faith Rode has in the quality of their mic. Even though the shockmount offers no shock absorption, the documentation does state that the capsule is protected by an internal shock mount as well as an internal pop filter. I did still run into some issues with plosives though, so i would still recommend an additional pop filter.

The frequency response of this mic is listed as 75Hz - 18kHz, which on paper, I was somewhat let down by, but once I heard it on my voice, I was back on board. The response is more than sufficient for voice overs / podcasts. The low end is full and tight, without being muddy, and the high end has nice presence and adds a great shimmer to your voice.

They list the polar pattern as Cardioid, and damn it, this thing is directional. As soon as I got slightly off axis, my voice dropped off a LOT. Also, when I smashed a keyboard behind the mic while speaking, you could hardly hear the keyboard. Some people might not like how narrow the polar pattern is, but for me, I love it. It will allow you to be in a room with multiple podcasters, and limit the amount of bleed between the microphones.

As far as other specs, they list a sensitivity of -56dB, and an impedance of 320-Ohms. Honestly, the sensitivity left a little bit to be desired. It is is a lot louder than the SM7b, but not quite as loud as the SM58. For the price, I would have liked to see slightly better output, but this is just me being overly critical.

Pros

  • Sounds Awesome on Voice
  • Amazing Build Quality
  • Excellent Noise Rejection
  • 10-Year Warranty

Cons

  • A little on the quiet side
  • Even with internal pop filter, still experience some issues with plosives
  • Does not sound good on guitar

Conclusion

I absolutely love this microphone, but keep in mind that the majority of what I do is vocal based. They tuned this thing specifically for vocals, and it produces superb vocal reproduction. On the other hand, if you're planning to record instruments with this microphone, I don't think that this microphone is going to cut it for you.

It is important to remember that this is a Broadcast Dynamic microphone, meaning it was designed to be used in a broadcast setting with multiple people talking in the same room and limiting the amount of bleed between microphones. That's the type of situation that this microphone will truly shine in.

If you have any additional questions about this microphone, leave them in the comments on this site or on the youtube channel, and I will try to reply ASAP. 

Buy the Procaster:
US: http://amzn.to/2bPi8fR
UK: http://amzn.to/2c6RHSx

Buy the Cloudlifter:
US: http://amzn.to/2cA8Y6X
UK: NA

BSP-034: YouTube Will De-Monetize This Podcast

00:00 - Intro
01:00 - New Microphone?
02:15 - YouTube DeMonetizing Videos
09:24 - Apple Event
10:21 - HI-SEAS Mission Completed! (http://hi-seas.org/?cat=88)
12:05 - SETI Signal! ALIENS!
13:30 - SpaceEx Falcon 9 Explosion
15:52 - MacBook Pro Dynamic OLED Strip
17:45 - Phillips Hue Motion Sensors
18:37 - New Tile Slim
19:25 - Show & Tell (Binaural Mic Rig)
23:00 - Stranger Things Season 2
23:57 - Bill Nye Saves The World
24:53 - Red Dwarf Season 11
25:30 - Music of the Week
26:14 - What I’ve Been Testing
27:23 - You Don’t Have the Time to Achieve Your Dreams
33:53 - Outro

On episode 34 of The Bandrew Says Podcast, I talk very briefly about the new microphone that I am using for this episode. Following this, I go into a lengthy rant about youtube demonetizing peoples videos, and also how wrong people are about youtube infringing on their freedom of speech & being censored. 

Then we go into the news portion which covers the apple event, HI-SEAS Mission IV Completion, SETI & Aliens, The SpaceEx Falcon 9 Explosion & Potential Conspiracy Theory, a potential MacBook Update, New Phillips Hue products and a New Tile.

For show and tell, I walk you through a proof of concept for a binaural mic rig that I made today in order to provide demonstrations of headphones. I also talk about the reasoning behind this, and the inspiration for it. Following this nerdy portion, we talk about three pieces of show news and a transition from spotify to apple music.

Lastly, I talk about what I've been testing and why you say you don't have time to work towards achieving your dreams, but in all honesty, probably do! GET TO WORK!

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Superhero Sunday: Ms. Marvel

Let’s grab a big yellow S and get ready for some cosmic rays as we blast into this month’s Superhero Sunday with Ms. Marvel.Please note that I will be covering the title “Ms Marvel: and how the main character changes through present day

The History

Ms.Marvel was first thought of in 1968 as the female counterpart to Captain Marvel (Mar-Vell), and appeared in Marvel’s Superheroes #13. It wasn’t until 1977 that she really was a part of the Marvel universe as Carol Danvers.

Carol was Ms. Marvel until 1985 when Mike Carlin and Ron Wilson, creators on the Fantastic  Four, decided that a new woman would pick up the name after being exposed to cosmic rays. Thus Sharon Venture became Ms. Marvel. Then in 2009 Dr. Karla Sofen, the super villain known as Moonstone became Ms. Marvel during the storyline “Dark Reign.”

Carol Danvers would occasionally pick the name backup, but that was until the mantle was adopted by a 13 year old inhuman in 2013. This new rendition of Ms Marvel was created by  Sana Amanat, G. Willow Wilson, and Adrian Alphona

The Character

Who is a Ms. Marvel? What does it take? Well, it takes a strong willed independent female getting hit by cosmic rays or becoming an inhuman to be Ms.Marvel. Carol Danvers (the first and now the new Captain Marvel) was an officer in the Air Force who, on a mission, gets caught in an explosion with Captain Marvel (a Kree alien) and she is exposed to cosmic rays. These are the rays that gave the fantastic four their powers and what makes the Silver Surfer the “Silver Surfer.” Once exposed she is enhanced and can shoot rays, fly and exhibits super strength. With this power she fights along the Avengers, and battles many galactic enemies.

The next most important person to dawn the mantle is when Moonstone takes over the mantle and during Norman Osborn’s Dark Reign and she becomes the Ms.Marvel of the Dark Avengers lead by Norman. As Moonstone she gets power from a Kree gravity stone and is imbued with powers similar to that of most superheroes but most like Ms. Marvel. During this era Ms.Marvel gets her name tarnished and the mantle is left alone. Carol later assumes the mantle of Captain Marvel in honor of the death of Mar-vell.

Now jump to a young New Yorker girl who discovers she has been exposed to a terrigen mist, which awakens special cells in certain people that makes them inhuman (it's like realizing you're a mutant but different). When Kamala Khan, a teen who already looks up to many super heroes, becomes an inhuman with super powers, she decides she wants to be like her idol; thus she becomes the contemporary Ms.Marvel. But Kamala is different. She has super strength and can morph her body, but she cannot fly.

Why this Hero?

Ms.Marvel has always been a real “BA” and that's awesome. I will admit it wasn’t til Kelly Sue made her Captain Marvel that I fell in love with Carol Danvers. That being said, everything written during Civil War was amazing and encouraged me to like so many characters.

However, it is Kamala that takes the cake for me. Her story is like a hybrid of commentary on contemporary while also being a new version of the Spider-Man “fish out of water” story. She learns what it is to be a hero while being inspired by the Avengers, much like how readers of comics are inspired by morally strong characters. I must recommend Ms. Marvel with Kamala Khan to everyone.

Recommended Reading

  • Marvel Masterworks: Ms. Marvel Book 1

  • Ms.Marvel (Marvel Now) vol.1

  • Dark Reign

The Shrieker Podcast 012: Lee Francis

Lee Francis joins us to talk about Indigenous Comic Con, happening at the National Hispanic Cultural Center here in Albuquerque on November 18th. The convention will bring together native actors, game designers, comic artists, and more from around the country to celebrate their unique contributions to popular culture. There will be panels such as “How to Survive the Zombie Apocolypse on the Rez”), music, and vendors. Celebrity appearences will include Jonathan Joss (of “King of the Hill” and “Parks and Rec” fame) and a variety of native cosplayers. There will be a screening “Monster Slayer”. There will be a game room featuring demos of video games like “Never Alone” with Ishmael Hope, “Blood Quantum” with Renee Nejo, and Elizabeth LaPensee. Particularly exciting to the host, Allen Turner will be bringing his Fate-based native-story-inspired RPG, Ehdrigohr and running a game jam to help native communities develop their own games. Aside from their website, you can find information on the Indigenous Comic Con on their Facebook page.

There is no Downloadable or Free RPG Society review for this month because Matt is lazy. Check the Geeks Rising blog to find past downloadable game supplements or reviews of free games.

Lastly, this episode marks a full year of The Shrieker. To celebrate, next month we will be sharing the stories of listeners, marking their development as game players, designers, and fans. Share stories of new friends made and favorite games discovered (and more) on our social media pages or by email for a chance to have them read on-air.

Rate and Review our show on itunes, join our Facebook  and G+ communities, comment on our website, or email me. We’d love to hear from you.

Mevo Live Event Camera Review / Test

Today we are talking about another product that you wouldn't expect to see on this channel. The Mevo Live Event Camera. This is a camera designed by the folks over at Livestream.com that allows you to live stream directly to Facebook Live (which is why I picked it up) as well as the Livestream service. 

Not only does this camera allow you to live stream in 720p, but it allows you to record your video directly to an internal SD card. I should note that this camera is only compatible with iOS devices, so for the time being any android users are out of luck.

If you are interested in this live streaming camera, it will set you back $400 on Amazon

What's In the Box

  1. MEVO Camera
  2. MEVO Mount
  3. 16GB Micro SD Card & Adapter
  4. Power Brick
  5. 10-Foot (3m) USB Cable

Specifications

  1. Sony 4k Sensor
  2. 150-degree Field of View Glass Lens
  3. Front Facing STereo Microphone
  4. 1-Hour Streaming Battery Life (can connect to power brick while streaming)
  5. Dual-Band Wi-Fi
  6. Bluetooth 4.0 LE
  7. Streams at 720p

Performance / Features

The build quality of this camera is all plastic, but it feels pretty sturdy like it would be able to handle travel decently. However, I do wish that it had come with some travel case to ensure that it is adequately protected. The entire top of the camera acts as the power button. You'll need to hold the button down a few seconds to power on/off the device. All around this power button you will find an indicator light to let you know if the camera is getting power, charged, connected to wifi, lacking connection, or if you're streaming/recording. On the back of the camera, you'll just find two ports, the top port is your charging port and the bottom port is your SD card port.

I'm sure some of you are asking why this camera has a 4k sensor, but only streams at 720p. To be honest, the reasoning behind this is the real selling point of this camera. While controlling the stream from your iOS device you can manually direct shots. For instance you can click on a face to zoom in, without effecting the stream quality. You can also pinch to zoom & unpinch to unzoom, as well as drag your finger to pan.

Another really great feature is Autopilot. This will utilize the front facing stereo microphone to determine where the sound is coming from and zoom in on the face of the person speaking. This is a great option if you have multiple people on a podcast and you are unable to focus on directing the shots.

Both of these features give your livestream the appearance of having a multi-thousand dollar camera rig and camera mixer, when you're only streaming on a $400 camera!

The camera's built in microphone is nothing special, but it does allow you to connect an external microphone to your iOS device to improve the audio. Unfortunately, the current microphones/interfaces that are compatible are relatively limited, so I would recommend checking their site prior to buying a microphone/interface.

Pros

  • Allows you to direct shots
  • Has autopilot director
  • Records to SD Card while streaming
  • Streams directly to Facebook live
  • Allows for external microphone connection
  • Compact

Cons

  • Limited microphone compatibility
  • External mics sound overly processed
  • Stream is only 720p
  • Limited to iOS devices

Conclusion

I think that this is one of the coolest and most innovative cameras I have come across in years. It allows you to direct shots like you have a multi-thousand dollar camera rig. It allows you to stream directly to facebook live & livestream. It allows you to connect an external microphone. It honestly has everything I could want in a live streaming camera; there are just a few small oversights, updates, and compatibility issues they need to work on to make it the go to entry level live streaming camera.

I would absolutely recommend this to anyone who is looking to live stream to facebook. This gives you a professional look and amazing features that will help set you apart from everyone else who is jumping on the live streaming train.

If you have any additional questions about this microphone, leave them in the comments on this site or on the youtube channel, and I will try to reply ASAP. 

Buy it on Amazon
US: http://amzn.to/2bKzoRL

Geeks Rising at Rose City Comic Con (Portland) 2016!

That time of the year has come, its another Comic Convention. The Rose City Comic Con is held in Portland OR where staff writer Logan (me) has just relocated and as always I will be doing my best to provide in depth insight on the different panels that are at the convention.

My hope is to see tones of creators and professionals of their crafts discuss and provide information to fans and people like me who are just starting out. More information will be coming as this con is set on September 10-11th.

Until then here are a few guests and people worth mentioning:

  • Stan Lee
  • Aubrey Aiese - LumberJanes
  • Gabriel Ba- Daytripper
  • Brian Michael Bendis- Marvel Comics
  • John Bernthal- The Punisher
  • Chad Coleman- The Wire, The Walking Dead
  • Phil Lamar- Various talents
  • David Yost- The Blue Power Ranger

You better believe I am going to try to meet all these amazing people and more!

Saramonic VMIC Recorder Review / Test

Today we are looking at a product that's a bit different than usual. We are looking at the Saramonic VMIC Recorder. I do need to note that this microphone was provided to me by Saramonic so i was able to review it.

This is a camera top shotgun microphone that can be placed into the camera shoe on your DSLR/Video Camera, or mounted to a 1/4" tripod mount. What really sets this microphone apart is the fact that it not only has an output to connect the microphone to your camera, but it also allows you to record directly to an internal SD card.

If you are interested in this microphone, it will set you back $200 on Amazon

What's In the Box

  1. Microphone
  2. Pop Shield
  3. 3.5mm to 3.5mm Cable
  4. Documentation
  5. Warranty Card

Performance / Features

The construction of this microphone feels very good. The main casing for the recorder is metal, and the front/back plates are a firm plastic. The windscreen is pretty thick and should also provide adequate protection from wind/pops. The display on the back of the mic is bright enough that you should not have any issue seeing it while in direct sunlight. The 3 control buttons under the screen also feel well constructed.

On the front of the microphone, there are two 3.5mm jacks. The top jack is the output that you will use to connect to your camera's microphone input. The bottom 3.5mm jack is an output to connect your headphones to for live monitoring. Directly below these jacks there is the battery compartment/SD slot. The microphone takes (2) AA batteries that will provide you with 8 hours of recording time. As far as the SD card, it takes a micro SD card, and according to the documentation, the mic can handle up to a 32gb card.

The back of the microphone has an LCD screen that shows you battery life, level monitoring, as well as recording time. Directly beneath the screen there are three buttons. The left button is your power button, the right button is your record button, and the center button is a d-pad that allows you to select between input volume, headphone volume, and low cut as well as navigate menus. 

The bottom of the camera has a standard camera shoe mount and also allows you to mount it onto a 1/4" tripod screw.

The frequency response is listed as 50Hz - 20kHz which is adequate for a camera top shotgun microphone. The mic records 16-bit 48kHz WAV files, and takes (2) AA batteries which will give you 8 hours of record time.

The polar pattern is listed as super cardioid. When directly in front of the mic it sounds pretty good. As you move off axis you start to witness a large drop off of high frequencies, but it does still pick up a bit of noise. As I moved around the sides and behind the microphone, I felt that it picked up a little too much sound as well.

Pros

  • Records to SD Card & Camera
  • Compact
  • Headphone port for live monitoring!
  • LCD Screen to monitor levels & battery life
  • Good build quality
  • Mounts to camera shoe or tripod

Cons

  • Seemed to have a wider polar pattern than expected
  • Somewhat compressed sound/tone

Conclusion

Similar to other camera top microphones, I found this microphone to have a similar compressed sound and tone to it, which gives away that it is an ultra compact shotgun microphone. I also thought that the polar pattern allowed for a bit too much noise to make it to the microphone.

Other than that, I think that this thing is a great deal. I love the fact that it is so small and portable. I also like that it provides a screen to monitor the battery life and levels to ensure you're not clipping as well as a headphone port for live monitoring! Another great feature is the ability to mount the mic to your camera or a tripod. My favorite feature on this microphone is the fact that it allows you to record to an SD card as well as output to your camera. This will give you the added security of an audio backup if the camera input is clipping, or the mic input causes too much line noise.

I would recommend this for vloggers who are out and about a lot and require a camera top microphone. It will give you all the functionality you need with additional features to ensure you are getting the best sound possible. If you are recording in a studio setting, I would suggest looking into a full size condenser shotgun microphone because those will provide you with a better sound quality.

If you have any additional questions about this microphone, leave them in the comments on this site or on the youtube channel, and I will try to reply ASAP. 

Buy it on Amazon
US: http://amzn.to/2c05NkF
UK: http://amzn.to/2bPxRs7

BSP-033: How To Overcome Personal Failures & Haters

00:00 - Intro
01:12 - Unbox Therapy Giveaway (Leave Lewis Alone)
05:56 - Amazon Echo Competitor
07:08 - Pokemon Go Users
08:29 - Gawker is Dead
11:03 - YouTube Social Network?
14:34 - Canon 5D Mark IV
15:50 - Apple iPhone is Completely Screen!
19:25 - Halt & Catch Fire
21:05 - Deadspace
22:07 - How Deal with Haters & Personal Failures
34:13 - Outro

On today's episode of the BSP, I go on a few length rants. First on the list revolves around Lewis from Unbox Therapy and peoples expectation and belief that he owes free phones to people. 

I then cover a lot of news from a new Amazon Echo competitor, Pokemon Go's user base, Gawker going bankrupt, a New YouTube Social Network, a New Canon 4k DSLR, and a Phone that is Completely Screen.

I briefly talk about Halt & Catch Fire and then Deadspace. For the main topic, I go in depth on how I deal with and overcome haters I encounter, people who doubt my goals, and finally personal failures in life.

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