Rode announces NT1 5th Generation – the world’s most popular studio microphone gets an upgrade
After a long wait, the 5th generation Rode NT1 condenser microphone is finally here with lots of audio enhancements & digital upgrades.
The NT1 was actually Rode’s debut microphone, and the manufacturer released it at a time when digital recording solutions were democratizing music production equipment for all. Now, the NT1 is a staple in both music recording and content creation, with many creators having a trusty NT1-A as their go-to microphone.
Well, everybody’s favorite microphone is back (in black) with new high-quality tech solutions for home and professional studios!
Rode NT1 5th Generation
The 5th Generation NT1 microphone is a large diaphragm condenser microphone that utilizes the same HF6 capsule that Rode introduced with the fourth Generation NT1. Now, though, the 5th Generation NT1 fuses the professional sound of the NT1 with new, cutting-edge technology.
While the HF6 capsule has proven time and time again that it delivers a high-end that sparkles with detailed mids and rich bass response, the new NT1 microphone now offers the world’s first “unclippable” 32-bit float digital output. Though audio engineers have long been practicing effective gain staging to attain the right levels before recording, now the 5th gen NT1 captures “the full dynamic range of the microphone while allowing users recording in a DAW to adjust their audio to the optimal level after recording”.
In other words, you can use the new Rode NT1 microphone to record a whisper and a scream in the same recording and not need to worry about setting gain staging so methodically and there still be no chance of their signal clipping.
“The NT1 5th Generation redefines the meaning of plug-and-play,” says Damien Wilson. “Since the beginning of audio recording, engineers have relied on the gain knob to capture clean audio – it’s always been the most important process in the recording workflow. The NT1 5th Generation changes that completely. When recording in 32-bit float, users can literally plug their microphone into their computer and start recording instantly without any risk of their audio being ruined by clipping or distortion.”
Nevertheless, the NT1’s tight cardioid polar pattern and smooth smooth frequency response allow for directional recordings that are clean and transparent. And the high sensitivity of the HF6 capsule means you can capture a wide range of sound sources including speech, acoustic and electric guitar, drums, piano, and more.
Meanwhile, the 5th Generation NT1 only has a minimal 4dBA of self-noise “making it the world’s quietest studio condenser microphone” state Rode, while the new microphone can handle high SPLs too. This is made possible by Rode’s Revolution Preamp; known for its low self-noise, high gain handling, and up to 192kHz high-definition signal conversion.
NT1 Dual Connect output
Perhaps one of the biggest upgrades that bring the NT1 microphones into 2023 is the new Dual Connect output board that offers both XLR and USB connectivity. So you can connect your NT1 microphone to an audio interface or another input console with the NT1’s XLR output. But the new USB C output allows you to connect your Rode microphone directly to a computer for plug-and-play recording!
Rode states that while using the XLR output, “the NT1 5th Generation delivers the exact same rich, warm tone and best-in-class performance that the NT1 is revered for”. But the manufacturer claims “these sonic characteristics are maintained with the added convenience, power and versatility of direct USB connectivity” while using the USB C port.
This is brought to life by the NT1’s onboard ADC which Rode claims delivers the same pristine audio fidelity while offering a range of highly innovative features to further enhance its sound. On-board DSP allows you to apply Rode’s own audio processing effects to your recordings, including a compressor, two-step high-pass filter, noise gate, and more including Aural Exciter and Big Bottom effects.
Rode’s free companion apps RØDE Central and RØDE Connect offer two different ways of processing your recordings. Firstly, the intuitive VoxLab editor gives you simple controls for adding Depth, Sparkle, and Punch to your audio. On the other hand, a more advanced editor gives you more precise control for more fine-tuned processing.
Drummers, whole bands, and podcasters with a number of guests can now utilize NT1’s extensive connectivity capabilities. Connect up to eight NT1 5th gen microphones to one computer for multitrack recordings, including Windows operating systems (with Rode’s custom ASIO driver).
NT1 5th Generation Features
- HF6 large-diaphragm (1-inch) gold-sputtered capsule, precision engineered to sub-micron tolerances
- Smooth frequency response, high sensitivity, and high SPL handling for incredible performance in a wide range of studio applications
- Exceptionally low noise (4dBA) – the world’s quietest studio condenser microphone
- Patent-pending Dual Connect output with both XLR and USB-C connectivity for use with audio interfaces, mixers and consoles, or direct plug-and-play recording with a computer
- World-first 32-bit float digital output
- Ultra-high-resolution (up to 192kHz) analog-to-digital conversion
- On-board DSP for advanced APHEX® audio processing, including a compressor, noise gate, two-step high-pass filter, and legendary Aural Exciter™ and Big Bottom™ effects
- Studio-grade shock mount and pop filter, XLR, and USB cables included
The NT1 5th Generation is available to pre-order now for $249 and will be available to buy in March 2023.
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