Home Lavalier Microphones Hollyland Lark M1 Review – Jekyll And Hyde?

Hollyland Lark M1 Review – Jekyll And Hyde?

by Stuart Charles Black
Published: Last Updated on
>AFFILIATE DISCLOSURE: As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.<

Don't forget to share if you found it helpful!

Big thank you to Hollyland for sending the Lark M1 to review!

Full disclosure: This is a paid review but I made it clear to them that I do not guarantee positive reviews or recommendations – I make in-depth, honest evaluations based on my impressions and the ultimate value that the product may or may not provide. 

Greetings mate and Welcome aboard.

Stuart Charles here, HomeStudioBasics.com helping YOU make sound decisions, so…

Lark M1

Price: Check Amazon! | Check B&H!

In The Box

2x Lark M1 Lavalier Mics

1x Charging Case

1x Standard interconnect (3.5 to 3.5mm)

1x USB-C to 3.5mm

1x 3.5mm TRS to 3.5mm TRRS Patch Cable

1x Lightning to 3.5mm for your iPhone

1x USB-A to USB-C charging cable

2x Furry Windshields

User Guide & Documentation

Lark M1 Review

Introduction

I’ve been semi-looking for a Lavalier mic to use for my videos, so when Hollyland Tech reached out and asked me if I wanted to demo a Lavalier mic, I jumped at the opportunity.

Sometimes, when you just imagine things like John Lennon, they come to fruition. xD

In this article,

we’ll find out if the Lark M1 is worth a purchase – discussing things like its build quality, sound, convenience & ease of use, and more.

By the time you’re finished reading, you should be either prepared to make a purchase or bypass it in favor of something else.

So without further ado, let’s dive in.

Build Quality

Lark M1 Review

While the box it comes in isn’t all that noteworthy, the zippered carrying case most certainly is.

This thing feels amazing to the touch and is hard enough to deter any doubts about whether it’s going to do its job.

The company’s name and logo appear on the front, and unzipping it feels pretty cool.

Not as cool as unzipping your pants, but close.

Inside is where the fun begins.

Lark M1 Review

We’re greeted with some neat things including a standard interconnect (3.5 to 3.5mm), a USB-C to 3.5mm for your phone, a 3.5mm TRS to 3.5mm TRRS Patch Cable, a Lightning to 3.5mm for your iPhone, a USB-A to USB-C charging cable for the receiver, and a couple of Furry Windshields for the transmitters (mics). 

In addition to that, there’s the charging case, the receiver, and the 2 transmitters along with some documentation and instructions.

All in all, this is a nifty package and it looks like the build quality of the charging case is solid and robust.

The mics themselves feel rather light, but not cheap.

This is probably a good thing as you don’t want something too heavy sagging on your shirt in the middle of a heated review.

The only thing I think they could have done better here is put the charging port on the back so you can charge it while it stands up.

Currently, it’s on the bottom and to charge it, you have to rest the case on its back which is kind of annoying for me.

Not a huge deal but something to keep in mind.

Now that we’ve discussed the build and contents, how do you set it up?

Set Up And Functionality

Lark M1 Review

Lark M1 Review

Firstly, as seen above, there are LED lights on the front indicating charge status.

Simply remove the mics and receiver out of the case and they automatically pair with each other. Putting them back in the case disconnects them from each other.

Auto Power On/Off

Remove TX/RX from the charging case, it will automatically turn on.

Put TX/RX back in the charging case, it will automatically turn off.

Manually Power On/Off

Hold the Power Button of TX/RX for 3 seconds to power on/off the device manually.

Manually Pairing

Hold the Pair/Hear Clear Noise-Cancelling button of TX for 3 seconds and then hold the Pair Button of RX for 3 seconds to pair.

Auto Charging

Put the devices back into the charging case, and the auto charging starts.

Manually Charging

Charge The TX, RX, and Charging Case separately via the Type-C port of each unit.

Turn On/Off HearClear Noise-Canceling Function on TX

Press the Pair/HearClear Noise-Canellin Button on TX to turn n/off the noise-canceling function.

Volume Gain Adjustment

There are three volume-level settings on the RX: Low, Middle, and High. The volume level of the device is set to Middle by default.
 
Press the Pair/Volume Up Button on the RX to increase volume and the Mode Switch/Volume Down Button to decrease volume.

Mode Switch

Long press the Mode Switch/Volume Button Down Button for 4 seconds to switch modes:
  • Green static light indicates Camera Mono Mode
  • Blue static light indicates Phone Mode or Camera Stereo Mode (depending on the device connected).

Now that all that’s out of the way, I’ll give you the good news first.

Sound

Lark M1 Review

Out of my iPhone, these sound pretty darn good and are undoubtedly an upgrade over the iPhone’s internal microphone.

To record, simply plug the lightning end into your phone and the 3.5mm jack into the receiver. Then just record a video and talk into the mic.

It’s really that simple.

Sound Clips:

iPhone’s internal mic:

Lark M1

You can clearly hear how much better it sounds. Notice the iPhone sounds a bit muffled while the M1 really sounds crisp and lively.

Sony A6400

Using it with my Sony A6400 was also super easy, but the results were markedly different.

For this method, slide out the hot shoe on the top of your camera and replace it with the receiver. In this case, it sort of just clips on I guess?

You can slide it in a little, but it’s a bit hard to push all the way in so I don’t want to force it.

I’d like to see them come up with a better solution to this as it never really feels all that secure.

In any event, just use the supplied 3.5mm to 3.5mm cable from the jack on the receiver into your camera’s jack.

Now you can record.

I’m really not sure if it’s the camera or what, but I’ve never had luck using an external mic with a DSLR – boom, lavalier, or otherwise.

I mostly just use XLR or USB mics and then line up the audio in post.

For me, the audio quality out of the M1 is significantly worse than just using the camera’s internal mic, and I was a bit disappointed in that regard.

Sound Clips:

Sony A6400 Mic

Lark M1

Lark M1 w/ mics attached to my shirt

I tried a few different ways to get the quality to come out good including speaking softer, experimenting with placement and distance, etc.

I just couldn’t get them to sound right, but your mileage may vary with this.

Hollyland advises you to turn the mic on your camera all the way down (which I did) but I had no luck using them in this way.

In any event, before we give a final verdict, let’s go over some things I liked as well as others that could be improved.

Lark M1 Review

What I liked:

  • Easy to use, convenient.
  • The build quality of the unit is excellent.
  • Comes with an array of cables.
  • The carrying case is beautiful.

What could be improved:

  • Definitely provide some way to attach a phone to the receiver for those who are looking to record YouTube videos with a Tripod. Some sort of band, velcro strip, etc.

And as far as the Sound?

I don’t know.

I think the sound is superb with my iPhone, so perhaps it’s simply that the connection between the DLSR camera and receiver isn’t all that great.

It’s also interesting to note that using 3.5mm interconnects can be incredibly hit-and-miss – with all types of gear.

Given this cable is short enough to prevent interference/other issues, I want to blame it on the camera itself.

It seems odd that the quality is significantly worse out of the A6400 vs. my iPhone, so I’m inclined to believe it’s not the M1 causing the issue.

In any event, let’s wrap this up. 

Final Verdict

Lark M1 Review

The Lark M1 is an intelligently designed, robust product with a great feature set and a fantastic hard body case to boot.

There isn’t much to complain about!

But…

Would I use it with my DSLR? Absolutely not.

Would I use it if I was recording videos/reviews with my iPhone?

You betcha. Oh yaaa.

It’s actually the perfect solution for those people who primarily record with their phones and looking to level up their audio.

So for that, I must recommend it.

Learn More:

 

Well, that’s about it for today folks! I hope you’ve enjoyed this Hollyland Tech Lark M1 review and came away with some valuable insight.

Questions? Comments? Requests? Did I miss the mark on something? Please let me know down below or Contact me!!

If you love what I do here and want to support the blog and channel in a more personal way, check me out on Patreon and discover all the value I have to offer you.

Just want to make a one-time donation? Click here. Your support is greatly appreciated and helps keep this site running!

Thoughts on the M1? How do you primarily record videos? I’d love to hear from you. Until next time…

All the best and God bless,

 

 

-Stu

[Xtr@Ba$eHitZ]

Be sure to check out my Reviews and Resources page for more helpful and informative articles!

Photo Gallery

Don't forget to share if you found it helpful!

Leave a Comment