I first saw the free ShurePlus MOTIV Mobile Recording app for iOS at NAB 2015, together with new digital microphones from Shure that are not yet available. Before doing my own tests after returning to Miami, my friend Dmitri Michas made some while still in Las Vegas. Despite lingering unanswered questions from Shure, ahead you’ll see why (particularly for stereo recording) I consider the ShurePlus MOTIV Mobile Recording app to be greatly superior to other iOS recording apps I have tested.
What I mean by for stereo recording
I mean for recording since both IK Multimedia’s iRig Recorder and RØDE Rec have inboard editing capabilities that are not present in ShurePlus MOTIV Mobile Recording app. As its name indicates, the ShurePlus MOTIV Mobile Recording app, focuses on recording and it does it extremely well, despite details explained ahead.
In addition, for mono-only recording (especially as a body recorder with remote wireless control), you may prefer Airlinc (shown above, reviewed here), since Airlinc currently records mono-only, exclusively at 48 kHz.
Features not yet usable
Just as the RØDE Rec app (reviewed here) has at least one feature that only works with a RØDE microphone, ShurePlus MOTIV Mobile Recording app contains functions that only work with the yet to be released digital mics from Shure. But even without those features, I recommend the ShurePlus MOTIV Mobile Recording app for anyone who wants to record stereo 48 kHz, because —as reported in more detail in prior articles, RØDE Rec has unfortunately become unstable with iOS 8 (despite a patch aimed to fix it), and IK Multimedia’s iRig Recorder still lacks support for 48 kHz, which is an absolute must for video producers.
Thanks to its superior stability and 48 kHz capability, I actually tested ShurePlus MOTIV Mobile Recording app when carrying out the recent stereo review (illustrated above) of the iRig Mic Field from IK Multimedia, and the i-XY-L from RØDE from RØDE, as well as with the hybrid XLR/USB AT2005USB handheld from Audio Technica.
I applaud the following features on the iPhone version of the ShurePlus MOTIV app (I haven’t yet tested the iPad version.)
- The ShurePlus MOTIV iPhone app is rock solid. It never crashed or froze during my tests, even when connecting or disconnecting a third-party digital microphone on the fly (as RØDE Rec has done often on multiple iPhones).
- The ShurePlus MOTIV iPhone app actually shows the 48 kHz/24-bit monicker on screen when recording, which is a great confidence compared to other apps where the operator must constantly verify that in a menu before recording each time. The ShurePlus MOTIV iPhone app even recalls that setting after quitting the app and re-launching it. All stated so far is a great stress reliever.
As of the publication time of this article, ShurePlus MOTIV comes with the following languages, and auto adjust depending upon the interface language set in your iOS device: Castilian (aka “Spanish”), English, Dutch, French, German, Indonesian, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Mandarin Chinese (both simplified and traditional), Portuguese, and Russian.
Questions I sent to Shure
Here are the questions that I sent to Shure several weeks ago. As soon as Shure replies, I’ll publish their response:
- The ShurePlus MOTIV iPhone app functions very well with third-party digital stereo iOS mics that have their own onboard gain adjustment in hardware. However, when using the ShurePlus MOTIV iPhone app with a third-party digital iOS mic that does not have any onboard hardware gain adjustment, the the ShurePlus MOTIV iPhone app’s software gain is visible but fixed (not adjustable). Nonetheless, the ShurePlus MOTIV iPhone app’s gain is indeed adjustable with the iPhone’s internal microphone Is this the intentional behavior with third-party digital iOS microphones which lack an onboard gain adjustment, or can we expect that to be changed in an upcoming software update to the the ShurePlus MOTIV iPhone app?
- When using the ShurePlus MOTIV iPhone app with a mono handheld digital mic made for iOS, it works fine, but only offers a stereo recording, which will obviously take double the space with no advantage. There seems to be no Mono setting available when using a third-party digital iOS microphone. Is this the intentional behavior with third-party mono digital iOS microphones, or can we expect that to be changed in an upcoming software update to the ShurePlus MOTIV iPhone app?
- When using the ShurePlus MOTIV iPhone app with a mono handheld digital mic made for iOS that is capable of 48-kHz/16-bit (not 24-bit), it records perfectly well, but at 48-kHz/24-bit, which obviously takes extra space with no benefit when using that particular microphone. Will there likely be a 48-kHz/16-bit setting added to the ShurePlus MOTIV iPhone app with a future update?
- Is Shure planning to release any Android version of the ShurePlus MOTIV app?
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