November 18, 2013

RØDE Introduces Their New 'No Fuss' On-Camera Mic, the VideoMic GO

Rode VideoMic GoLike most areas of filmmaking, recording sound is a valuable talent as well as a complex science, which is why the knowledge of sound professionals is so important on your film projects. However, depending on budget constraints and the nature of your film, you might want something a little simpler with less of a learning curve. RØDE has just announced its light and compact "no fuss" VideoMic GO, designed to be portable and easy-to-use. It's geared more toward hobbyists than seasoned professionals, but take a look at the sound quality and judge for yourself if RØDE's new mic is worth the your hard-earned cash.

Usually a piece of equipment prides itself on its vast number of tools, settings, and modifications, but the VideoMic GO prides itself on its lack thereof. RØDE's VideoMic and VideoMic Pro offer more in terms of advanced settings and level adjustments, and the VideoMic GO is just a simpler alternative. There are no switches or settings to worry about, nor batteries -- it's powered by your camera's external microphone input.

Here are some specs pulled from RØDE's website:

  • Acoustic Principle: Line Gradient
  • Frequency Range: 100Hz ~ 16,000Hz
  • Equivalent Noise: 34dBA SPL (A - weighted per IEC651)
  • Signal Noise: 60dB SPL (A - weighted per IEC651)
  • Power Required: Plug-in power required (330uA @ 2.5V)
  • Dimensions: 167mmL x 79mmH x 70mmD
  • Directional Pattern: Super-Cardioid
  • Sensitivity: -35dB re 1V/Pa (17.8mV @ 94dB SPL) ±2dB @ 1kHz
  • Maximum SPL: 120dB (@ 1kHz, 1% THD into 1kΩ load)
  • Dynamic Range: 96dB (per IEC651)
  • Output Connection: 3.5mm stereo mini-jack

Now, it doesn't matter how easy a microphone is to use if it doesn't pick up good audio. Listen to these audio samples to get an idea of the quality of the VideoMic GO:

For filmmakers working on a serious film project, it might be best suited for your BTS shooter, not necessarily because of the sound (I think it sounds pretty good,) but because the lack of control over settings. If you were working on a more intimate project, I could see where it could be helpful, but keep in mind that not only is it powered by your camera, it's also integrated with the shock mount. So, without a bunch of extra tools and hardware, your mic and camera won't be straying far from one another.

VideoMic GO

However, for $99, it wouldn't hurt your bank account too badly if you wanted to add another tool to your toolbox. To be honest, I wouldn't mind having a tiny mic like this lying around so I wouldn't have to break out a big ol' shotgun and stand, or mess with the settings on an H4N every time I want to shoot something on the fly.

What do you think about the audio quality of the VideoMic GO? Do you have any projects that'd benefit from having a bare-bones, "no fuss" mic? Let us know in the comments below.

Links:

Your Comment

34 Comments

I like it but i hate the red shock mount. It could have been really good for some descreet docu style video but the loud colours will just draw attention. If they release it in all black that would be good. I've got an original video mic and I don't use any extra settings, infact worrying about batterys can be a pain for long shoots. This coupled with a rangefinder style descreet camera will be great for what I like to shoot

November 18, 2013 at 7:57AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

0
Reply
kev

Spray paint.

November 18, 2013 at 9:34AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

0
Reply
Austin Mace

'Rode has just announced it's' - shouldn't have an apostrophe. Personal pronouns don't have possessive apostrophes - Hers, His, Theirs, Its.

November 18, 2013 at 8:20AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

1
Reply
wilx

Anal much?

November 18, 2013 at 11:26AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

0
Reply
Shorty

+1000 sheesh

November 18, 2013 at 12:13PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

9
Reply
August

Pretty lame how spelling and grammar folks always get bashed on the internet. We should all aspire to master our language! Why settle for mediocrity.

November 18, 2013 at 12:14PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

3
Reply
Chaz Newman

I wouldn't say so. If you're writing as a profession, for something intended to be seen by dozens/hundreds/thousands of people, do you really think that getting the basics right is surplus to requirements?

Maybe anal/pedantic to point out spelling mistakes or grammatical slips in a comment, but in an article? Seems fair enough to me. Nothing personal meant by it, and the writer has since corrected it.

As for the mic - looks decent enough to me. I'd want to A/B with their other videomics to see the quality difference & noise floors though.

November 18, 2013 at 12:16PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

5
Reply
wilx

Assuming we don't understand basics is a little silly. Write thousands of words per day and mistakes will happen, especially those that can be overlooked even by rereading. Simple as that.

November 18, 2013 at 12:30PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

0
Reply
avatar
Joe Marine
Camera Department

If people in countries with several language can spell correctly in all of them, there should be no excuses for those in countries with just one or two, to ever get it wrong. Published work, no matter on what medium, should be proof read and corrected. No need to celebrate mediocrity like it is some kind of "cool". It isn't.

November 22, 2013 at 3:26AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

0
Reply
B S Kumar

I love how the promo doesn't actually have any sound from the mic....
I don't really see much benefit besides the $99 price point being cheaper. I've got a VideoMic and, in the 2 years I've had it, It's only on it's second battery.

November 18, 2013 at 8:59AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

0
Reply

I'm with you. I use a VideoMic at my full time job and it's a champ. I've left the battery accidentally running for weekends and still haven't had to change it.

November 18, 2013 at 9:15AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

0
Reply
Eric

That's why they put 4 dedicated videos underneath just for ppl like you....just scroll down...isn't dufficult

November 18, 2013 at 10:59AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

0
Reply
Kendrick

Thanks for the support everyone, we also have four "Hear it now" videos which demonstrate the results of the VideoMic GO with four different camera setups including Canon 600D, Canon 5D mk3, Panasonic GH2 & GoPro Hero 3 - See the videos at http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLZXQp_XoNBBMsZMematzPaUJBycpBhW7i

@Paul, that was definitely a concern and we have put warnings in the packaging about using 24/48 phantom power to the device. The VideoMic GO is targeted at the consumer market which generally don't have XLR input.

November 18, 2013 at 4:33PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

2
Reply

Sounds good enough for scratch track on video. Doesn't have the pesky rubber bands the other mic has.

November 18, 2013 at 10:52AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

0
Reply
Robert

Sound quality is really good....no batteries....no settings...just plug and go....$100....these will fly off the shelf......take my money now

November 18, 2013 at 10:57AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

12
Reply
Kendrick

Like the new Tascam, these plug-in power mics are a disaster waiting to happen (for the manufacturers). They're going to get tons of returns on these; consumer communication about plug-in power (not to mention any clear standard) is nearly non-existent. Kendrick above is a good example of the gullible consumer who will simply return the product immediately for a refund.

November 18, 2013 at 11:52AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

7
Reply
Paul

Serious business.

November 18, 2013 at 6:16PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

0
Reply
CJ

In my opinion, I believe this is a really good consumer product, I'll just stick to my Video Mic pro.

November 18, 2013 at 6:22PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

5
Reply
Edward

'little simpler with less of a learning curve'
I honestly didn't think -20db -10db 0db +10db was that hard to grasp...

"-db makes the mic less sensitive, +db makes the mic more sensitive."
"WOOAH slow down there champ my head is starting to hurt!"

November 19, 2013 at 3:36AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

0
Reply

There are odd occasions where I'd quite like to get a better atmosphere track when shooting without having to lug around my whole audio setup, but not really often enough to justify spending the money on the Pro. This would fill that little gap nicely!

November 21, 2013 at 11:16AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

1
Reply
AdamS

No gain control as Video Mic Pro, no good for interviews. Whats the point? Price?

November 21, 2013 at 3:33PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

0
Reply
Otavio

I like Rode nice people to do business seriously making some great tech, I like this but I don't like the red Rycote lyre shock mount think it should be black like the recite used on the rode video mic ripoff made by SHURE Vp83 etc.
I'd really be unhappy if the patent granted to Rycote is for anything U shaped made of plastic is the reason why SHURE and Rode are using their shocks because it's just common sense and this design predates Rycote by 50 years and Rode and the like should be doing this themselves without having to pay a middleman.
Personally have had no problem with the bands ever with the videomic pro and like its battery casing because it is hard to remove if you don't read the manual and know how to remove.

November 21, 2013 at 3:33PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

0
Reply
Grant

Had me then lost me with all that red. Make it all black and I will buy one.

November 21, 2013 at 4:15PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

3
Reply
CJ

So does it mean that I have to use Phantom power when I use this mic?

November 21, 2013 at 9:50PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

1
Reply

Do I see 2 mics on that camera when the asian singer songwriter guy is playing the guitar? Check out :19

November 22, 2013 at 12:38PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

3
Reply
nevernothing

Sure looks like it from that angle.

November 22, 2013 at 2:33PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

0
Reply
Dan H

There are two mics. One is connected to a 600D and the other one to a MR-100. They change the audio source during the video.

November 28, 2013 at 5:43AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

0
Reply

It has kind of a hollow sound being placed on the camera. You have to get your mic much closer to your subject. On-camera mics for master audio tracks are a LAST resort. Definitely for consumers or for a little better scratch track than audio picked up by the camera's built-in two tin cans and a piece of string.

November 22, 2013 at 2:31PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

0
Reply
Dan H

I don't know... In each of those videos it sounded fairly noisy to me, and I was just listening on my iPhone speakers. The $99 price tag is nice but it doesn't exactly scream quality. I think this may be a bit of a gimmick for amateur videographers who want their rig to look cool. Although I think any external mic is an upgrade to most on board DSLR mics. You get what you pay for.

November 23, 2013 at 3:24PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

4
Reply
videojesse

How good is its wind shield??
Looking at getting one but I would use it for plane spotting but as it gets a bit windy, I am unsure how it would go.

November 25, 2013 at 1:14AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

1
Reply
Nathan

I must be doing something wrong because I couldn't get the audio to sound that good with the VideoMic Pro. Or they're cleaning up the audio in post.

November 27, 2013 at 11:33AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

2
Reply
Bill Clar

Ok, just got one for a small test with Pavasonic V700 and ... borrowed Videomic Pro from my friend for comparison.
GO is quite an interesting idea to me (hate batteries), so here my impressions:
= GO is a bit more sensitive than Pro in the "0" position
= GO is noticeably less directional than Pro, so picking my breathing much more. On the video camera it is at least one block more for a side noise
= Sound is a bit different from both models, not sure which one I actually prefer more.

So I might choose GO because:
= not quite happy with [directionality] of either, but GO cost less
= GO is without the battery power, which is useful because in couple of test sessions with Pro I've forgot couple of times to turn the mic on, so a bit less likely to ruin my recordings again
= switches has tendency to fail and batteries to leak.
= Mini-jack cable of GO is easier to replace or extend in case placing the mic closer

December 28, 2013 at 2:20PM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

0
Reply
Pavel Epifanov

Forgot to mention - Pro is obstructing the zoom control on the video camera, so an extra shoe adapter is required ....

December 29, 2013 at 3:21PM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

6
Reply
Pavel Epifanov

Hi,

Will this work with my 550D T2i? Does the 550D T2i have the required "Plug in power"?

Many thanks.

January 14, 2014 at 7:46AM, Edited September 4, 11:45AM

0
Reply
Dave