Guest post by Clinton Harn:
Rode have just released their new NT-USB studio mic. Connecting via USB to an iPad, OSX or Windows PC it focusses on convenience and quick turn around times – useful in broadcast scenarios and fast sound recording applications.
This mic isn’t a “re-hash” of their popular Podcaster. The capsule itself has been designed from the ground up, and manufactured to specifications as a Cardioid condenser, while the podcaster is a dynamic mic. This simply means that the NT-USB would be ideal for picking up more sound nuance and detail.
There are subtle differences in application. I see the NT-USB performing a more versatile role and would consider it a go to “Bread & butter” microphone for more general applications.
The Podcaster has been around for a while now and is mainly for voice application, whereas the NT-USB is not only great for voice, but the condenser properties mean you can use the mic for a plethora of purposes such as instrument, foley on location and ambient recording.
You can pair the mic to an iPad via the Apple camera connection kit (or other suitable USB adapter). Similar to the iXY, the NT-USB works with the RØDE Rec app making it ideal for journalists and correspondents on the go.
The USB to computer option allows you to use it with your mainstream audio based programs such as Logic, Protools, Garage Band, right down to direct voice overs on iMovie.
Front end computer audio devices & interfaces often suffer lag during data transfer, and are generally dependent on buffer rates. The NT-USB features a zero-latency stereo headphone monitoring (3.5mm) jack, which allows users to monitor the microphone input in realtime, along with dials to adjust the monitoring level .
Build and sound quality should typical of a RØDE mic – the company claim best in class performance. Really nice finishing touches included are a pop filter, a high-quality stand mount with industry standard 3/8” thread, desktop tripod and a pouch.
Full disclosure: Rode is a sponsor of this site.