Today, we’re writing the RODE NT-USB Microphone review to share details on the NT-USB. It’s a condenser mic delivering excellent recording performance for vocals, instruments, gaming, live streaming, etc.
The product offers remarkable audio quality, elegant aesthetics, and premium features in a user-friendly form factor. With these, you’ll sound like a professional in seconds.
We’re starting this RODE NT-USB Microphone review with its packaging and contents.
Like other RODE microphones, the NT-USB arrived in a simple-looking cardboard container. Of course, the front displays an image of the product, its name, and the company’s branding. You’ll also find a short description along with these.
Inside the box, all items are secure and organised cleanly and neatly. Nothing will get mixed up or damaged while it’s out for delivery.
The mic comes with a sleek and effective metal pop filter, desktop tripod, and a 6m USB cable. There’s even one soft case, a user manual, and a ring mount for microphone stands.
Everything displays the professional quality and style of RODE.
RODE NT-USB Microphone Review – Design and Functionality
Now, our RODE NT-USB Microphone review will discuss its functions and design. The NT-USB is a solid and classy microphone with an all-black body.
Its elegant form adds to its classy and professional aesthetic, making it excellent for any setup. We love its painted white icons on black since it gives off a raised look.
The microphone has a finely-engineered standard mount that lets you angle it anywhere within a 180° arc. It also allows angling even when attached to a mic stand or the plastic tripod. The latter is for setting it on your tabletop.
There’s a rounded pop shield about an inch in front of the capsule’s grille. It firmly links between the microphone’s base and mounting ring.
Using a detachable pop filter makes the NT-USB better. But it’s already notable with the metal shield that prevents annoying plosive sounds.
The arm holding the pop filter and the desk tripod isn’t solid-looking. But the two of these do the job right when you’re recording and are stronger than you think.
The NT-USB is also an easily portable microphone, making it the best solution for people on the go. Since it’s compact, it’s easy to keep in its zip-up case before placing it in a bag. So wherever you go, you can do professional-quality recordings and voiceovers.
Adjustment Knobs and USB Connection
Two adjustment knobs and a 3.5mm headphone jack is on the microphone’s side for easier access. The top knob mixes the balance between music playing in the DAW (if any) and the microphone’s signal. For its lower knob, it adjusts the entire volume in your headphones.
You’ll find the USB connection exactly where you’d see one on a conventional mic. Then a stereo minijack headphone output is kept on the mic’s side.
It’s specifically below two knobs for controlling the minijack’s output volume. The other is to balance dry sounds at the source and sounds from your computer.
Key Features of the RODE NT-USB Microphone
What makes this product a unique USB microphone? Let’s discuss its key features in our RODE NT-USB Microphone review to know what these are.
Studio-quality USB condenser microphone
The NT-USB features a cardioid polar pattern with a frequency response ranging from 20 Hz to 20 kHz. It offers high-fidelity audio and features off-axis rejection of sounds on the sides and behind the capsule.
Included Professional Pop Filter and Tripod
The NT-USB comes with a stand mount that has a 3/8-inch thread. It also has a premium pop filter that fits onto the microphone’s base to minimise plosive sounds when recording.
High-power headphone output for zero-latency
Since the NT-USB has a 3.5mm headphone jack, you can listen to the audio as you record. With wired connectivity, you can enjoy zero latency.
Onboard monitor level and headphone mix controls
The onboard monitor level and headphone mix controls allow you to customise your audio while recording.
We’re checking out the product specifications in our RODE NT-USB Microphone review. It’s to let you know if the product has everything you need. Also, this will help you determine if it will work with the devices you plan to use.
The NT-USB is a side-address cardioid microphone with a pressure gradient acoustic principle and a 0.50-inch capsule. Its active electronics include a JFET impedance converter with a bipolar output buffer and a 16-bit 48kHz A/D converter.
This microphone’s frequency range is 20Hz to 20kHz and has a bit depth of 16-bit. For its acoustic principle, it’s 110 dB SPL. The NT-USB runs with a USB connection. Its output connectors are a USB port and a 3.5mm headphone jack.
For its dimensions, the mic measures 184 x 62 x 50mm (H x w x D) and weighs 520g.
In terms of compatibility, it works with Windows, Mac, and Apple iPad. It works with any mainstream recording DAW for both Mac and Windows systems.
When using the iPad, the NT-USB works with numerous apps, including RODERec, GarageBand, and other audio apps. And to note, you’ll also need the Apple USB Camera Connection kit when using the iPad.
RODE included a one-year warranty for the NT-USB. When you register your product, you can extend the warranty period to two years.
Hands-on with the RODE NT-USB Microphone
Of course, we tested the product so we can share in our RODE NT-USB Microphone review how well it performed. But before that, we’ll first discuss the installation and setup process.
We started with screwing the mounting ring onto the supplied tripod mount to assemble the microphone. The mounting ring can work as a mic clip for attaching the NT-USB to a mic or boom stand.
Installing the NT-USB is straightforward since it doesn’t need any drivers and accessories. It was simple as placing the microphone in the mount from above and threading it into the mounting ring.
Next, we turned the dial at the bottom of the tripod stand clockwise until it was secure. Once done, it was ready to use, so we plugged it into our computer via a USB cable.
To start recording, we selected the NT-USB as the audio device in our preferred recording app.
Since it’s a cardioid microphone, we didn’t need to do a lot of tweaking. We only adjusted the recording and monitoring level on the connected device when necessary.
We tested the NT-USB on Windows and a Mac PC, and the product worked well on both systems.
The NT-USB has all the necessary features to make a high-quality recording of vocal tracks or acoustic instruments. Its pop filter is easily removable to eliminate plosive sounds for better overall sound quality. Plus, it has adequate sensitivity and frequency that can capture all the nuances of acoustic instruments.
One of the first things we noticed about the NT-USB was its built-in headphone amp that was loud and clear. It provided a lot of volume for our headphones.
This microphone delivered impressive audio quality. The sound was sharp and was the best we’ve heard on a USB microphone, and it filtered background noise excellently. When we used it in our busy office, the microphone reduced people’s chatter to a murmur that wasn’t distracting.
The NT-USB’s audio was also precise, and even if we spoke from a distance, it delivered admirable performance.
The NT-USB was easy to use for voice-overs. Its built-in headphone jack with volume control and monitor-mix knob allowed fine-tuning of the audio we were recording.
It was also suitable for podcasting, gaming, and calls since its headphone jack allowed us to communicate. But since it’s a side-addressed microphone with a single pickup pattern, it was ideal for individual podcasts.
Podcasters will love the high-quality audio, durable construction, and compact size of the NT-USB. Both musicians and voice-over artists will love the microphone for the same reasons, making it easy to recommend.
RODE NT-USB Microphone Review Summary
The NT-USB is the ideal microphone for podcasts, streaming, and other voice applications. Its cardioid pattern reduces versatility, but it’s great if you look at its performance and quality. It delivers brilliant audio quality and stands out from the competition, plus the included pop filter seals the deal.
During our product testing for our RODE NT-USB Microphone review, we saw the NT-USB’s excellent performance. It captures audio clearly and only delivers high-quality results.
Overall, it’s one of the best-sounding USB microphones we’ve used. With its excellent construction, audio quality, and ease of use, we highly recommend it.