Blue Microphones Mikey hands on

The scene is set: you have a huge wad of tunes on your Apple iPod and love every one of them, you are inspired and start thinking that you could be just as creative in the music department as any Justin Bieber or Girls Aloud. So what do you do?

The first thing is to take a long hard look at yourself in the mirror and ask yourself why you're packing such dross on your iPod; unless a teenage girl is looking back at you then it's time to have a rethink. The second thing to do is start recording some music, but sadly your iPod doesn't want to play as it doesn't have a microphone - queue the Blue Mikey portable mic.

This is the second version in the Blue Mikey series, and the sequel gets a few nice additions that we''ll come to in a bit, but the size and shape stays roughly the same; it measures 635 x 635 x 127mm making it pretty much half the size of an iPod touch.

On the tech side of things you'll get two Blue-engineered custom-tuned capsules for stereo recording, and (the new) 3.5mm line-input means you can record from other sound sources, whilst the (also new) USB pass-through means you can charge when recording - very handy.

In our tests the sound was decent; voices were nice and clear and music recorded was dealt with similarly. If we were being picky then we'd say the mic feels a little flimsy and light, but as the sound was good we can forgive this and it makes sense not to have a heavy device sitting on the end of your iPod.

It's a very portable device and the 230-degree pivot makes it pretty adaptable to a variety of recording situations. There is also a sensitivity range, which is indicated by three small lights on the front of the Mikey; this allows you to adjust recording levels and means its usefulness is given even greater range.

The Blue Mikey is available now and works with iPod touch 3G and below, iPod classic and iPod nano, costing £59.99.