Maono GamerWave Review (Page 2 of 4)

Page 2 - Physical Look - Hardware

From an appearance aspect, the Maono GamerWave seems rather generic. The microphone features a primarily plastic enclosure. This pink variant is a lighter pastel-like pink. While it may not be the bright or loud pink that some maybe hoping for, I think this is a pretty safe shade of color. You can see the microphone capsule is suspended around a plastic ring by four thick rubber bands. The company name can be found right at the front of the ring. A plastic mesh pop filter is slotted above this area with the company logo printed on the mesh for a neat effect. This pop filter has the same pink plastic around it to keep the mesh structured. Otherwise, the entire body comes in at a weight of 273g with the pop filter and the base but without the cable. This makes the whole unit quite light and even prone to falling over. Worse yet, any adjustments like adjusting the gain would cause the GamerWave to move about, since it is not heavy. In terms of dimensions, in the 90-degree orientation, the mic and base are approximately 193mm in height, 130mm in depth, and 90mm in width. This is relatively compact and should not stick out too much when it sits on your desk.

As for its inputs, there are two areas to speak of. First, we have two split capacitive touch surfaces at the top. It would have been nice for Maono to make the division between the two buttons a bit more noticeable, but there are engraved markings for this. On the left, we have a button to cycle through the color effects. As this is the GamerWave, it is no surprise we have an RGB lighting element here. The lighting is located behind the metal microphone grille and is evenly diffused. Pressing this button cycles between nine different effects and solid colors, including a color cycle, breathing mode, and seven different solid colors. If you press and hold this button, it will disable the lighting altogether. On the right, we have a button that mutes and unmutes the microphone. Similarly, if you press and hold the area, it will turn on the electronic noise cancellation, or ENC. The LED at the top will also change colors based on the operating mode. In regular operation, this light will be green and turn red when muted. With noise cancellation active, this LED will shine blue.

As for the capsule, the Maono GamerWave is a condenser microphone with a cardioid pick up pattern. This records 24-bit audio at a 48kHz maximum sample rate. Maono has not specified the size of the condenser capsule inside, but the GamerWave features a -40dB sensitivity and a frequency response of 80Hz to 10kHz. We also have a signal-to-noise ratio of 70dB.

At the bottom of the Maono GamerWave's head, we have several more inputs. First, we have a 3.5mm audio jack for audio monitoring. This should allow for zero latency monitoring for the captured audio. This headphone jack also acts as an audio out on your computer, but I did notice I needed to crank my volume a bit more with some headphones plugged in. Next, we have a large knob at the bottom of the microphone labeled "Mic Gain". As expected, this adjusts the input gain. One thing I did not like was how loose this knob was, as it was quite easy to change the levels accidentally. The final input is not seen here, but is located at the back, is the USB Type-C port. This allows for connection to either your computer or your console. According to Maono, the GamerWave can work with Windows, Mac OS, PS4, and PS5 devices.

Taking a look at the base of the Maono GamerWave, you can see this plastic bottom is black on the underside. The outer rim is made up of a stiff foam base, which feels similar to the playmats they have in children's classrooms. Unfortunately, it is much too stiff to help with absorbing vibrations or to even keep the microphone in place. However, we will see how this translates to our real-world tests later on. The base is made out of plastic, so it does not add too much weight. If you so desire, you can also take the Maono GamerWave off of this bottom section and connect it to a third-party mounting arm. Maono does include a separate color-matching mount adapter, although it is also made up of plastic. I wish there were more metal parts on the GamerWave, especially as this area has more moving parts. Otherwise, the microphone can be adjusted in how it tilts at the back area, which lets users position it more towards where their face is.

Page Index
1. Introduction, Packaging, Specifications
2. Physical Look - Hardware
3. Recording Performance Tests
4. Conclusion