#shure EMPJ MOTIV MV88

RESULTS: To use a smartphone microphone or not to use a smartphone microphone, that is the question

“U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley, said last month that no more than 250,000 Americans are in ‘extreme poverty,’ denouncing a United Nations report saying 18.5 million Americans suffer extreme impoverishment.” That was what Washington Post Policy reporter Jeff Stein and Economics reporter Tracy Jan both wrote and tweeted in mid-July which later had to be retracted because Haley said she never gave that statistic.

Although neither journalists lost their jobs, misquoting a source can be a career-ending foot with a little-to-no possibility of regaining credibility. One way of preventing this from happening is by making sure you have a recording device that catches every syllable.

Watching continuing coverage of the Mueller investigation and the confirmation hearings for Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, I noticed that most are relying on their iPhone or

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other smartphone devices to record reactions from Senators in the echoing halls of the capitol. But camera shuttering and fellow journalists mumbling in the background can compromise their sound bite.

So is there a better way? I try to answer that question in my latest field test project for my Emerging Media Platforms class I am taking during my matriculation at the Communications@Syracuse graduate program of the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University.

As I previously mentioned in my proposal, I found the Shure MV88 iOS Digital Stereo Condenser Microphone online when I was preparing to conduct several interviews on a cruise ship earlier this year. As you may, or may not know, cruise ships do not have the best acoustics on any of its decks. A constant “humming,” from the engine room, is resonating throughout the ship which sometimes makes it hard to listen to a person that is right beside you more or less in the same cabin with you. The MV88 seemed like the perfect investment for me because it was small enough to fit in my pocket and easy to calibrate with their free Shure Plus MOTIV Mobile Recording app.


As you continue to read this study, you will find out about a field test that can improve reporting to lessen the inaccuracies of quotes and helping journalists work smart instead of working hard in reporting the news.

A clear hypothesis will be addressed to give the instruction of the field test. This test will also determine a target audience of what the findings will benefit them in their work for years to come.

This study starts with the background behind the MV88 iOS Digital Stereo Condenser Microphone from Shure Industries. Project Manager for the MV88 of the MOTIV product line, Soren Pedersen, will give us an in-depth look into the microphone and also some of the reasons why Shure decided to make this product.

The execution of the field test will be determined from an independent survey supplied with samples that compliment the research’s data.  The results from the test, including comments from surveyors and vivid analytics of the results, will confirm or not confirm the hypothesis stated. Lastly, a brief conclusion, including my recommendations to the target audience, will be shared at the end of the report. Enjoy.


Using the Shure MV88, does the smartphone microphone work better or worse in quite of loud environments and will it help journalists have more accurate quotes. This will benefit journalists (the target audience) who use recording devices for professional purposes.

SO WHAT IS THE MV88? shure mic 6

Shure Industries created the MV88 to offer content creators unraveled convenience and professional quality audio on the go. Reasonably priced at $149.00 the microphone connects to the lightning connector port of all current Apple iPhone, iPad, or iPod products and enhances audio quality to its camera and voice memo apps or by using the free Shure Plus MOTIV Mobile Recording App which offers recording editing and sharing enhancements to your content.

Product Specialists, Soren Pedersen, has been working for Shure for over 10 years. Pedersen and his team developed the MOTIV and PG ALTA products like the MV 88.

I was happy that he was willing to answer a few of my questions in a phone interview at the Shure World Headquarters in Chicago:

How did the MOTIV product line begin?

With the relationship with the app and the microphone itself, how did that get developed?

With the microphone in the iOS already, why did Apple think it was a good idea to have a microphone company build a better microphone?

The MOTIV app is very technical. How would a novice approach going through the app?

I’m a journalists and a content creator, and like you said journalists are going to be using the microphone more than for musical purposes. As you may or may not know with the news there has been inaccuracies and misinformation when reporting. How would the clarity of what the microphone is picking up help prevent that?

With the field test that I’m conducting now, I’m trying to see if people can hear a difference in clarity and quality of sound. What should I expect my results to be?



In making the comparison of the built-in mic on my Apple iPhone 8 and the MV88 I recorded myself singing the same song into 3 different environments: a dark closet, the Rockefeller Center subway platform and the center of Times Square during New York rush hour traffic. After creating the samples I drafted a Google Forms survey to conduct test sitesan A/B test for my target audience of professional journalists and journalism students who would be interested in a device like the MV88. When listening to 2 of the samples from each environment, questions were given on the criteria of quality, clarity, and overall enjoyment of sound.

Below are the samples that you can listen for yourself:






A total of 80 individuals responded to my request to take the survey. Each person was helpful in retrieving vital data to determine if the MV88 improves sound quality for Apple products.

When it came to the indoor samples:

  • More people (68.8%) enjoyed the sound coming from the standard iPhone microphone made the lyrics seem clearer than the MV88
  • 56% said that the clarity of the sound coming from the iPhone was their main reason for making their choice
  • Over 61% responded that they would buy the device that recorded the sound which in this case was the iPhone 8

  Count of What did you like about your choice the most_Count of If you knew which device recorded your choice, would you buy it_ (1)

When it came to the subway samples:

  • The majority (83.5%) preferred the MV88 over the iPhone
  • Clarity was also a factor when making their decision with 61%
  • In a close margin (57% to 42%) were not interested in buying the MV88

Count of Which sample did you hear the lyric clearer_

Count of What did you like about your choice the most_ (1)

Count of If you knew which device recorded your choice, would you buy it_ (2)

When it came to the Times Square samples:

  • The MV88 narrowly won (53% over 46%) over the iPhone
  • Clarity was also appreciated the most with 50% of surveyors but 38% liked the quality of the sound the most in this sample instead of the other 2 samples
  • Once again, the No’s were the majority of purchasing the MV88 by 53%

Count of Which sample did yo hear the lyrics clearer_

Count of What did you like about your choice the most_ (2)


Count of If you knew which device recorded your choice, would you buy it_ (3)


“They [both samples] were very clean and understanding.”

“Audio recording devices are a purchase I make based on what the end user is.”

“Despite the noise floor being loud, I thought sample A (MV88) provided the most audible difference in sound.”

Neither sample was a ‘quality’ recording. 1A (MV88) was better at drowning out the background noise while 1B (iPhone) picked up everything and drowned out the vocals.”

“Clarity and quality make a difference when it is being recorded.”

“I like how clear you can hear the first one with all the noise of the subway and the volume doesn’t have to be all the way up to be able to hear clearly.”

“When it comes to purchasing the recording device, there are several other factors I would consider in addition to sound quality, including portability, size, etc. That’s why I answered ‘NO.’ However, the ones selected would be my choices to consider.” 

“1B (iPhone 8) brings out the vocals more but, in turn, brings out the background noise. A simple noise filter would make it very usable.”

“I like how clear it is throughout even with all the noise in the background.”

“I might buy it would depend on price.”


In my opinion, I think my field test was a success in finding out if there are ways of improving accuracy in quoting sources. Microphone attachments like the MV88 will in fact help assist with that problem and also enhance the content for their stories. shure mic 3

Out all of the data accumulated, I would recommend the Shure MV88 iOS Digital Stereo Condenser Microphone to my fellow journalists to take with them to use for interviews that will be in loud, outdoor, or chaotic environments.

I would love to hear your thoughts about my field test and the results that were determined. Please leave a comment below and I would greatly appreciate it.


Fordham, E. (2018, July 14). Nikki Haley Demands Retraction From WaPo Reporter After He Misquotes Her On Poverty. The Daily Caller. Retrieved October 2, 2018, from

MV88 iOS Digital Stereo Condenser Microphone | Shure Americas. (2018). Retrieved October 2, 2018, from

Pedersen, S. (n.d.). Soren Pedersen Interview [Interview by A. N. Joyner].

Soren Pedersen [Web log post]. (2014). Retrieved October 2, 2018, from

DigiAlli EMPJ Uncategorized

Journalism trends for 2019 revealed during #ONA18 conference

My week was filled with networking and barbeque during the Online News Association’s annual conference in Austin, Texas. Thousands of digital journalists from around the world gathered to find out about new tools, techniques, and technologies of our ever-changing industry.

Out of all of the discussions, from reporting during the Midterm Elections to female journalists facing harassment on the Internet and in the newsroom, the most dynamic was the “Tech Trends for Journalists” session on the last morning of the conference.

The address, led by professor of the NYC Stern School of Business and founder of the Future Today Institute foresight and strategy firm, Amy Webb, led the over 2,000 register conference-goers through a journey of how some of their favorite reporting tools, like wearable tech and smartphones (that’s right smartphones), will be replaced by over 108 new trends that will start as early as 2019. Webb, who is also known as a quantitative futurist, introduced a few examples from her “2019 Trend Report for Journalists, Media & Technology” report that will help newsrooms fight against misinformation and offer alternatives for funding quality news in the near future.

Some of the trends mentioned:

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  • Natural Language Generation: Machines translating content into different languages and generate content for different mediums and in different voices or styles.

  • Immutable Records: Information records using blockchain technology that can NEVER be deleted or modified. A company to watch is Tron

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  • Token & Tekenominics: This new blockchain business model will revolutionize how media companies approach monetization and distribution. Civil is one of the companies to watch as their recent platform is the home of the podcast Zig Zag with hosts Manoush Zomorodi and Jen Poyant.

  • Faceprints: Advance computing systems that can use unique features of our face– bone structure, skin color, even capillaries– to identify us. AlterEgo, developed by the MIT Media Lab, is a closed-loop, non-invasive wearable system that allows people to converse without opening their mouth– simply by vocalizing internally.


Whew, my mind is blown just writing this so I know your brain is shook reading this! If you think you can handle more information (and I suggest you to read slowly) click HERE to read the full report.

DigiAlli EMPJ

Farmers and First Responders are Thankful for Drones and the Unmanned Aerial Systems Program at Hinds Community College

In comparison, the great state of Mississippi is more all rural than metropolitan and having access to certain things are difficult to come by. Now, with the help of technology, this common problem has a solution.

The Unmanned Aerial Systems Program at Hinds Community College in Raymond, Miss, prepares students for careers as operators and/or coordinators of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) aka “drones.” The program offers a 2-year  Associates of
Applied Science degree, plus industry and government certifications. Hinds
students learn to build and operate drones, understand UAS hardware/software
systems, as well as learn commercial applications such as aerial photography,
agriculture, surveying, mapping in addition to ecological monitoring and inspecting.hinds logo

Hinds UAS Instructor, Dennis Lott, told Jackson, Miss news station, WAPT-TV, “80% of the commercial market in the United States is going to be agriculture.”

Lott also mentioned that the future of drones could help farmers grow crops, deliver emergency supplies and even drop off packages at your front doorstep, now being tested by retail website Amazon.

Hinds is one of the first institutions of higher learning in the U.S. to teach students not only to maintain drones but to fly them for the commercial application of the future. In 2016, Hinds joined forces with Mississippi State University to extend their students farm droneeducational opportunities with the 2+2 agreement in their Precision Agriculture department. In addition to the 60 hours of coursework at Hinds, students can transfer to MSU for a bachelor’s in Agricultural Engineering Technology and Business department.

In addition to the relationship with MSU, Hinds CC has been collaborating with William Carey University in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, since 2014, to explore the possibilities of sending medical response faster with the help of drones. The Healthcare Integrated Rescue Operations or HiRO uses a modified DSI 1000+ drone to carry a 20-pound telemedical kit to send ahead while first responders are in route to a remote area like a farm or inside of a national park. Each kit has a Google Glass video glasses which connects bystanders with a doctor to walk them on how to care for a person in need of medical attention before an ambulance arrives.   To see a simulation of how the HiRO drone will work and save people’s lives, visit their YouTube channel HERE.

DigiAlli EMPJ Uncategorized

Dri-Fit keeping you dry? The LilyPad Temperature Sensor can answer that

In 2014, the last Father’s Day gift I gave my Dad was a lavender polo shirt made with  Dri-Fit technology and some khaki cargo shorts for him to wear on the golf course. He loved that shirt so much that he decided to wear it while working and taking my Mom on “hot” dates. He said he loved wearing the shirt so much because it kept him cool and prevented him from sweating so much.

Now, as I reminisce those special times I spent with him, I wonder did the shirt actually keep him dry or was that because the advertising said it would? Dri-Fit fabric is a type of material that is made of a polyester and microfiber fabric. This fabric helps evaporate sweat away from the fabric surface and from your body. As developers have tons of research to support their theory, I want to put it to my own test.

Using the LilyPad Temperature Sensor found on, it will determine if the body of a person wearing Dri-Fit clothing increases or stays the same during use.

LilyPadThe sensor detects temperature changes near its surroundings.  Sewing the LilyPad on the Dri-Fit garment of a test subject,  the sensor will accumulate the data and transfer to the Arduino circuit board and translate the data to code.

Formatting the code would go to the Adafruit Feather nRF52 Bluefruit app. Developed by the woman-owned Adafruit Engineering plant, The Feather is an all-in-one Bluetooth Low Energy board with a native-Bluetooth chip called the nRF53832. app imageThe Bluefruit acts as a data pipe that can transmit information to your iOS or Android device. The “Check Arduino Temp,” IFTTT applet connects with my Google Docs spreadsheet where the determination of the material does or does not do what is advertised.

DigiAlli EMPJ

“To use a smartphone microphone or not to use a smartphone microphone, that is the question”: A Field Test Proposal for Emerging Media Platforms

In mid April, I had an idea for a digital article that I’ve wanted to write relating to citizens of the African Diaspora (countries that have descent-ion from African people) making their decisions to leave their families to work on a cruise ship. Once I scheduled my interviews, I knew I wasn’t sure if I would be able to talk to them in a quite room. To relieve that possibility, I purchased the Motiv MV88 iOS digital stero condenser microphone from Amazon to get quality sound from my subjects and to make sure that I quote them accurately.

I think buying the microphone was a great investment into my journalism career because it will help me produce in several different forms including digital articles, podcasts, and YouTube videos.

Sadly, a large number of journalists use only the built-in microphone device on their smartphones for gathering soundbites which could lead to misquoting a source, causing liability for the journalist and the company that published the error.

For my submission of the final project for my Emerging Media Platforms class, I will be conducting a field test to see if the quality of the MV88 microphone gives better quality sound compared to the factory microphone and recording devices inside my Apple iPhone version 8 smartphone. The hypothesis of this experiment: does the smartphone microphone work better, or worse, in loud or public areas.

I will conduct a survey for consumers to take which will have samples of both the iPhone and the MV88 recording the same song. The first comparison will be in a quite, indoor space with both devices. The second comparison will be on a noise platform at the 47th Street/ Rockefeller Center subway station. The third comparison will be outside in the center of  Times Square in New York City. All samples will be taken between 6:00 PM and 7:00 PM Eastern Standard Time.

Wish me luck!