Antlion Audio ModMic 5 Review
“Where clarity, noise reduction, and other qualities desirable in a mic are concerned, the MM5 takes a long step past most mics included with gaming headsets and earbuds.”
When we crossed paths with Antlion’s ModMic 4 back in January 2016, we walked away considerably impressed.
A year later, our enthusiasm only extends for Antlion’s excellent new ModMic 5.
That’s primarily due to numerous user-requested enhancements Antlion made to ultimately craft a pricier ($20 extra) but more versatile and durable model.
For the uninitiated, the ModMic is a detachable boom mic that uses a simple but effective magnetic system to attach to any headphones, including high-end, expensive cans you might already own or are eying but that lack a mic. By adding mic functionality, the ModMic saves you from having to buy a separate gaming headset or settle for the typically inferior audio quality gaming headsets produce compared to even quality midrange headphones.
So what constitutes the MM5’s higher price? Not better mic quality actually, as even Antlion notes there’s no difference over the MM4 here. The MM5, however, does do with one unit what the MM4 needed four SKUs to accomplish. Namely, the MM5 integrates omnidirectional and unidirectional mics into one capsule, along with a switch to toggle them. Further, Antlion bundles a removable mute switch by default now. It sits between the boom mic’s short cable and one of two extendable cables (1m and 2m lengths) Antlion includes, both with 3.5mm jacks.
Anyone who games in varying environ-ments knows why inclusion of both mic types is enticing. While the omni-directional setting (studio mode) outputs more realistic audio and is best for quieter settings (a cozy man cave, for example), the unidirectional mic (noise-reduction mode) reduces ambient noise to lessen the impact of a noisy setting (think a large LAN party) on communication.
The MM5 also includes stronger Kevlar-reinforced cabling, a beefier steel spine for the boom’s flexible arm, cable wraps, and stronger magnets. Those magnets attach to clasps that connect the boom to headphones, and setup couldn’t be easier. Just attach the 3M adhesive-backed base clasp to the headphones and the top magnetic clasp on the boom arm to this. When finished, just separate the magnets. I used Superlux HD668B semi-open headphones, and the base magnet connected firmly to the earcup’s mesh covering just as Antlion promised.
(USB and Y adapters for Mac, console, and mobile device use are available from Antlion, as well.) Where clarity, noise reduction, and other qualities desirable in a mic are concerned, the MM5 takes a long step past most mics included with gaming headsets and earbuds I’ve used in recent years. Recordings, chats, in-game communication, and calls were exceedingly clear and strong. In unidirectional mode, those I communicated with reported similar stellar results. Overall, we’re not talking professional studio-level mic quality, but the MM5 isn’t that far off.
Unidirectional capsule: Sensitivity, -38 ± 3dB; Response, 100Hz to 10kHz; SNR: >50+ dB; Impedance, 2.2 ohms; Max input SPL, 110dB; Omni-directional capsule: Sensitivity, -26 ± 3dB; Response, 30Hz to 17.5kHz; SNR, 58 + dB; Impedance, 2.2 ohms; Max input SPL, 110dB; Connector: 3.5mm
plated TRS for PCs; Extras: carrying case, foam pop filter