Headquartered in El Segundo, California, Marshall Electronics, the company behind the MXL brand, is known as a manufacturer of, among many other product lines, good sounding and very reasonably priced microphones. Marshall Electronics is able to maintain low production costs due to the fact that the company operates manufacturing facilities in the US, China, Japan, Korea and Russia, along with an additional R&D Center in Portland, Oregon-all the designs and prototypes are created here in the U.S.
Another well-known product line of the Marshall company is Mogami, the high-end cabling, and Mogami products are found in the wiring of the microphone under review.
The V87 microphone is a large-diaphragm condenser FET mic with a fixed cardioid polar pattern. It was designed to offer some color and character reminiscent of the warmth of vintage mics, but with a more modern sound to it.
The appearance of a mic has a psychological impact and therefore influences the performance of a recording vocalist. At first glance the V87 appears to be a solid product, an impression that is reinforced when you first hold it in your hands. The build quality seems to be very good.
The V87 comes snugly packaged in a cardboard box; also included are a nickel-plated rectangular "Metal Mesh Pop Filter" (MXL PF-005-SS)-which adds a bit to the 'vintage vibe'-a hard mount mic stand adapter (MXL-V6-H), a low profile shockmount (MXL USM-002) with an extra elastic band, a blue microfiber MXL cleaning cloth, and some basic paperwork about this and other MXL mics.
Unlike other mics from the same manufacturer, the V87 does not include a case, be it plastic, metal or wood. That may be a matter of price point, but it sure would be nice to have a place other than the cardboard box it came in to store it safely. Even though it also doesn't include a soft carrying case, I found the included micro fiber cleaning cloth useful when leaving the mic on its stand overnight. The plastic Ziploc-type bag it comes in fits perfectly over the mic with the blue cloth surrounding it, and therefore functions as a dust shield when the mic is not in use. Hey, times are tough... I've learned to improvise when I have to.
General technical specs
I'd call it the best camera for that price. I'd go for it.
FYI, Downsides are:
* Limited lens compatibility (no autofocus motor, so many Nikon lenses won't work)
* Autofocus is slow enough to be completely useless in live view mode (try it in a store)
* Video mode isn't up to par with Canon and friends. You get limited resolution, awkward frame rate, horrible audio (11kHz with low quality built-in microphone, and no microphone input, and the kit lens will give you lots of image stabilizer noise).
Stepping up, Canon 550D is an amazing camera (albeit without the pivot LCD)