Micro Compact Directional Condenser Shotgun Review
The Comica CVM-VM10 II microphone.
First of all, let me get my usual caveat out of the way. This microphone was received as a review product. I get many emails asking me to review products and my process is this:
If any of those fail and I don't think the product would appeal to me or our readers, I don't bother.
In this case, the product looked pretty good so I went with it. Please bear in mind that I don't get paid for this review. In fact it costs me money because it takes me about 6 hours to complete and upload a simple review like this hence the reason I turn many away.
To be fair, I was pleasantly surprised and impressed with this mic. In fact, more than three years on I still use it in 2021. Great for "run and gun" operations with most cameras including my Go Pro Hero 9.
The microphone was delivered the next day (good start) and right away, I was impressed. Plus the box it came in was high quality. When I opened it, I saw something that only high end microphones offer (and even some companies like Rode don't include one), and that is a decent case.
Unlike many products, the case that comes with the Comica CVM-VW10 II Condenser Mic is solid, sturdy, well made with a nice feel to it. When opened, the foam insert is cut perfectly to house the mic and accessories.
For a mic in this price range, I was pleasantly surprised at the accessories included which are:
That is really impressive and the microphone itself is also well made out of a type of matt black brushed aluminium.
I first tried the mic out with my Panasonic GH5 at a family party. Obviously I'm not going to show that footage as it is private and getting permissions would be a nightmare ; )
You can hear audio samples from the GH5 in the video review on this page above somewhere.
The audio I captured by simply plugging the microphone into the 3.5mm jack input on the GH5 and putting the mic on the hotshoe was impressive. One particular clip that was filmed outside with people talking and running water was particularly clear.
At the party itself, the directional aspect of the microphone worked well as I filmed young children playing and babies laughing. All caught with very little ambient noise from behind.
However, the further away you are from the sound source, the more "pickup" noise from ambient sounds will be recorded too.
This microphone is incredibly light and you can barely feel it is on the camera. The power drawn from the GH5 to operate the camera is so minimal I didn't even notice it.
Accessories sold separately are fairly limited so if you are going to predominantly use this mic with a DSLR/Mirrorless camera etc, buy the camera version with shock proof mount.
Samsung S7 Smartphone
Once again, this is really simple to set up. Comica say that if you have any issues with your particular Smartphones video/audio, use a third party app such as Filmic Pro. I use that app, it is very good.
However, I had no issues at all with the video camera on the Samsung S7 and in fact, the audio came out incredibly crisp and clear with good bass resonance.
Using this microphone with your Smartphone? You will need an adapter to hold it in place but I am not sure Comica sell these separately. If you intend to use this mic solely with a Smartphone, get the Smartphone version.
Go Pro HD Hero 5
There was a slight problem here as the cable I bought to test this (USB to 3.5mm jack) didn't work. I think it is because it needs a power source. After fumbling around the web, I learned that Go Pro like you to use their own mic adapter with the HD Hero 5 and 6.
Therefore, I wasn't able to test the Comica mic with the Go Pro : (
Canon EOS 5D Mark IV
The Comica CVM-VM10 II microphone worked well with the 5D Mark IV. However, this was ONLY after I realised that you need to activate the wind filter and audio attenuator from within the menu. Again, keep your audio source close to the camera for best results...like any microphone really.
In my opinion and for the price, this microphone is very good. If you don't want to carry around a ton of audio equipment when shooting family or "non-professional" video/audio clips, this is great to have with you at all times.
I use my Smartphone and GH5 for just about everything "non-professional" these days and the internal audio from both can only do so much. Having a phantom powered mic with me at all times means I can quickly plug it in and improve the audio in a snap!
When using the Comica mic with any camera be it:
You need to try to get as close to the audio source as possible for best results.
When I tested the Comica CVM-VW10 II side by side against the Rode VideoMic Pro, there was very little difference considering the £110 price difference. Both sounded great. There was only one difference I noticed. That was a very, very faint, very high pitched sound from the Comica which was only really noticeable when wearing headphones.
Anyway, I would happily recommend this product to anyone looking to improve the quality of the built in audio from any camera. For £42 or so, it is well worth having in your bag for superior sound.