Best Rode Mic – How to Compare Which Rode Mic Is Best for You

Published Categorized as Headphone & Microphone Reviews

You most likely have heard of Rode microphones before or have seen them in use. Rode makes trustworthy and high-quality microphones that can be used in musical projects and also filmmaking. Rode shotgun microphones are also widely used in broadcasting and are all broadcasting-grade quality.

Rode has a large range of shotgun microphones to choose from that all have specific features to make them stand apart from one another. Therefore, choosing the best Rode microphone really depends on the user.

No matter if you are a filmmaker, broadcaster, content creator, singer, or musician there will be a Rode microphone suited to your needs. From researching the Rode shotgun microphone range in-depth, the Rode microphone is best suited to recording solo sounds rather than large bands.

In this article, we will explore the various Rode microphone models and present which is the best Rode microphone for you. 

Rode Mic on point

Table of Contents

About the Rode Shotgun Mic

The Rode shotgun microphone is a term that actually refers to a range of microphones that Rode offers. Rode is famously known for the Rode video microphone range which is known as Rode shotgun microphones.

Rode shotgun microphones are known as the go-to microphone in the film industry as Rode produces high-quality directional pick-up microphones that help with audio recordings in a range for a range of circumstances. Rode produces microphones that can be used for boomers, outdoor use, and distant subjects.

When picking which is the best Rode shotgun microphone you will need to know what circumstances you will use it for and how the specifications of the microphone will work with those conditions. When choosing a Rode directional shotgun microphone it is best to consider your budget, the use, and the frequency response of the microphone to know which is the best option.

A Rode shotgun microphone has a memorable shape, often being long in length and cylindrical-shaped. There are plenty of ways you can use the Rode shotgun microphone and there are over 15 models to choose from.

Here is a video by Max Yuryev reviewing different models of Rode shotgun microphones:

About the Rode External Mic

When you hear someone refer to the Rode external microphone they are most likely referring to the VideoMic on-camera microphone. Rode microphones are famous for their use in recording audio for media, broadcasting, and film and an external mic refers to equipment that is used as an extra to the camera when filming.

The Rode VideoMic is a high-quality audio mic that connects to any DSLR camera, externally. The Rode VideoMic contains a studio-grade condenser capsule meaning that it has a directional super-cardioid polar pattern. The Rode VideoMic is a versatile microphone that can be used in various filmmaking projects.

Rode Mic

About the Rode Directional Mic

You can find examples of Rode directional microphones when looking at the Rode NTG1, Rode NTG2, and the Rode VideoMic. Directional polar patterns or cardioid polar patterns are one of the most common polar patterns and Rode is famous for microphones that are directional. The directional polar pattern means that sound is not picked up from the side or the back of the microphone.

What is a Directional Microphone?

A directional microphone is a microphone that picks up sounds from one direction which is loathed in front of the microphone. These directional microphones are great at picking up specific sounds and eliminating noise that you may not want to hear. Rode microphones tend to all be directional pick-ups.

Directional microphones can also be referred to as cardioid microphones. To fully understand what directional microphones mean you will need to know what a microphone polar pattern is.

A microphone’s polar pattern refers to how sensitive the microphone is and how the microphone receives the sound depending on how the microphone is placed. For example, the polar pattern refers to which direction and which angle the microphone is placed.

Best Rode Microphones

Knowing which is the best Rode microphone for you is something that will take a little research. There is no one clear winner when it comes to Rode microphones as they all have different specifications and are designed for different purposes.

What to Look For When Finding The Best Rode Microphone

Decide the Purpose of Your Microphone

Firstly, it is best to decide what you would like your Rode microphone to achieve and then focus on the specifications it will need to tick to complete the job successfully. Once you know the basics of what you would like your microphone to achieve, then picking a winner will be easy.

When looking at the Rode microphone range, most of the Rode microphones are great at capturing directional sound along with achieving many other projects. For example, you will be able to use your Rode microphone for many different uses as long as you make sure that the microphone is low noise and has high sensitivity to allow the microphone to pick up all the required sound.

Knowing what you would like to use your Rode microphone for is the factor that is most important, but it is also a good idea to keep in mind the budget. It’s easy to look at the range and think that the most expensive must be the best but it’s better to look for what the best microphone is for you and your project.

Rode shotgun microphones are cardioid and therefore the pickup pattern for these microphones is narrow. So, to achieve sound pick up you will have to point the rode microphone at the sound you would like to record.

I would recommend that if you are wanting to record instruments or a band, the Rode shotgun microphones may not be your best bet. Rode microphones tend to work better for broadcasting and use within media.

Look at Tube Length

The second factor that may be important when researching which Ride microphone is best for you is the tube length and the frequency response. The tube length will change the frequency response and the pick-up pattern of the microphone.

If you are looking at the Rode microphones that are very long in size, the size of the microphone will mean that the microphone is only able to record on-axis sound and should remove the off-axis sound.

This kind of microphone would be great for outdoor recording. Even though these kinds of microphones will be great for outdoor recording, it is best if they do not move as the sound quality will be largely affected.

If you are looking to use a Rode microphone that you can take to lots of events and want the microphone to be adaptable to conditions, it would be best to go for a medium-length tube or short-length tube.

The Best Rhode Microphone For You To Try

After reading reviews from customers and experts, here is a list of the top Rode microphones that are best sellers:

Let’s take a look at each in more detail!

Rode Videomic Shotgun Microphone with Rycote Lyre Mount

The Rode Videomic Shotgun Microphone is one of the most popular Rode microphones that are on the market due to how flexible and durable this microphone can be. Not only is this microphone hard-wearing, but the sound quality is very professional, making the Rode Videomic Shotgun Microphone one of the best microphones in the business for content creation audio recording.

The Rode Videomic Shotgun Microphone can fit onto any DSLR camera without affecting the camera’s vision. The Rode Videomic Shotgun Microphone is connected to the DSLR camera via a 3.5mm stereo mini-jack. This allows for full control over the levels and filtering features the microphone can provide.

Here are the Rode Videomic Shotgun Microphone with Rycote Lyre Mount features:

  • High-quality on-camera microphone
  • Directional pick up
  • Supercardioid polar pattern
  • Two-stage gain control
  • High-pass filter
  • Integrated Rycote Lyreu shock mounting

Rode NTG1 Condenser Shotgun Microphone

The Rode NTG1 Condenser Shotgun Microphone is one of the Rode microphones that I would recommend for vocal recording as well as broadcasting. The Rode NTG1 Condenser Shotgun Microphone is considered to be an entry-level condenser microphone but still produces very high-quality audio and is ideal for video audio and filming audio.

The Rode NTG1 Condenser Shotgun Microphone Is a very lightweight microphone and therefore would work well as a boom microphone. The Rode NTG1 comes with features such as a frequency response from 20Hz which creates a natural tone.

This microphone is ideal if you would like to record an event indoors but can also be used outdoors. If you are wanting to record audio outdoors with a Rode NTG1 then you will need to purchase a DeadCat furry windshield to help with unwanted noise.

Here are the Rode NTG1 Condenser Shotgun Microphone features:

  • Low noise response
  • Full frequency response
  • Directional super-cardioid polar pattern
  • High-pass filter
  • Lightweight (105 grams)

Rode NTG2 Shotgun Microphone

The Rode NTG2 Shotgun Microphone is considered to be another entry-level microphone, but even though it is classed as entry-level the audio quality is still fantastic. The Rode NTG2 Shotgun Microphone is very similar to the NTG1 microphone as it holds many of the same features.

The main difference between these two microphones is that the Rode NTG2 is longer than the Rode NTG1 and more adaptable. The Rode NTG2 is known for its adaptability as it can be dual powdered and can run on an AA battery. This ability makes the Rode NTG2 ideal for recording at remote locations.

Here are the Rode NTG2 Shotgun Microphone features:

  • Dual-powered – operates from either P48 phantom power or AA battery
  • Low noise response
  • Full frequency response
  • Directional pick up
  • High-pass filter
  • Lightweight 

Rode NTG3 Super-Cardioid Condenser Microphone:

The Rode NTG3 is one of the superior microphones in the Rode collection. The  Rode NTG3 is one of the most durable microphones and is perfect for outdoor recording in all environments. The audio quality of the Rode NTG3 is very high, exceeding the NTG1 and NTG2. This level of audio recording produces a warmer sound to the audio as the microphone has a fuller frequency response.

The Rode NTG3 microphone has a fantastic ability at eliminating any unwanted noise that could pick up on the other Rode microphone. The Rode NTG3 microphone is ideal for outdoor audio recording as well as recording large spaces like an orchestra or concert. If you are planning to record an orchestra or concert, the Rode NTG3 microphone will work well at picking up specific instruments.

Here are the Rode NTG3 Super-Cardioid Condenser Microphone features:

  • Broadcast-grade
  • Resistant to moisture and condensation
  • Directional pick-up without off-axis coloration
  • Available in either a satin-nickel or matte black finish

Rode NTG4 and NTG4 Plus Shotgun Microphones

The Rode NTG4 microphone is a professional entry-level shotgun microphone with features that can make the microphone versatile. The biggest pro about the Rode NTG4 microphone is how lightweight it is which makes this microphone ideal for use on a boom or on a camera.

The Rode NTG4 microphone produces a clean and crisp sound which is ideal for voice-over work. The Rode NTG4 microphone is also a directional microphone meaning that it has a super-cardioid polar pattern. Due to the NTG4 being a directional microphone it also features a high-frequency boost which can compensate for the dulling effect that comes from using a fluffy windshield.

Here are the Rode NTG4 and NTG4 Plus Shotgun Microphones features:

  • High-pass filter
  • High-frequency boost and -10dB pad
  • Directional pickup
  • Clean and crisp sound
  • Ideal for booming and studio use

Rode NTG8 Broadcast Quality Shotgun Microphone:

The Rode NTG8 is a microphone that is built for broadcasting and is broadcast-grade. The Rode NTG8 microphone is a long shotgun microphone that works well in demanding situations that require a highly directional sound pickup.

This microphone features RF-bias technology which helps with resistance to moisture and condensation allowing the microphone to be used for outdoor recording. I would advise that the Rode NTG8 microphone is ideal for situations where you will be recording from a distance.

Here is the Rode NTG8 Broadcast Quality Shotgun Microphone features:

  • Broadcast-grade
  • Resistant to moisture and condensation
  • Directional sound pickup
  • RF-bias technology
  • SM8 shock mount to prevent noise pick up from vibrations and handling noise

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

Which Rode mic is best?

The answer to which is the best Rode microphone really depends on what kind of microphone you are looking for. If you are after a piece of recording equipment that is durable and can pick up the sounds clearly and directionally, then you may be after an external microphone like the Video Mic. If you are wanting a microphone that is very sensitive and therefore will pick up as much sound as possible, then the Rode NTG1 may be your best bet as this microphone is a condenser microphone rather than a dynamic microphone.

Are Rode microphones any good?

Rode microphones sell very well along with being a well-trusted brand that delivers quality musical recording equipment. Rode microphones have been mass bought and reviewed by thousands of experts across the globe. Rode produces microphones for all kinds of different uses – whether that is recording vocals professionally or recording sounds to be accompanied by visuals.

What is the best Rode microphone for vocals?

The Rodes NT1 is perfect for professionally recording vocals within the studio as it is a condenser microphone. When recording professional vocals, a condenser microphone is your best bet as a condenser microphone is more sensitive when compared to a dynamic microphone.

Which Rode NTG Is the best?

From comparing customer reviews, it seems that the Rode NTG5 shotgun microphone is considered to be the best Rode NTG microphone on the market. The reason that the Rode NTG5 microphone is widely loved is due to the tonal quality of the microphone as the NTG5 microphone picks up a natural tone. The performance of the Rode BTG5 microphone is also very impressive, especially in climates that would not be practical for some microphones.

Final Thoughts

Rode microphones are trustworthy and high-quality microphones to use when you are wanting professional results. Investing in a Rode microphone will 100% be worth the investment as they are durable microphones that will consistently produce good results. I would recommend that Rode microphones are best for filmmaking and broadcasting audio recording purposes.

If you are looking for a Rode microphone that can manage outdoor considerations, your best bet will either be the Rode NTG8 Broadcast Quality Shotgun Microphone,  NTG3 Super-Cardioid Condenser Microphone, or the Rode Videomic Shotgun Microphone with Rycote Lyre Mount.

If you are looking for a Rode microphone that is designed more for the voice and is very sensitive then the Rode NTG1 Condenser Shotgun Microphone will be the best investment.

Here are more posts on the blog to check out:

By Nate Pallesen

Nate is just your average (above average) guitar player. He's no Joe Satriani, Jimi Hendrix or Jimmy Page - wait this site is about acoustic guitars (sorry) He's no Django Reinhardt, Chet Atkins, or Michael Hedges, wait? who!? He's no Robert Johnson, Eric Clapton or Ben Harper - more familiar? Anyway you get the point :-)

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