Rode’s NT-USB mic is a solid, great-sounding condenser mic, but it was first released in 2014 and has definitely been delayed in updating (it uses a USB-B cable). Input: Rode NT-USB+.
The NT-USB+ retains NT-USB’s rugged, professional design on the outside and adds some pretty impressive updates on the inside, including enhanced circuitry, Rode’s Revolution Preamp technology, and an internal DSP. (Oh, and there’s also a USB-C port.) The Rode NT-USB+ comes with a removable pop shield and tripod desktop stand, and features a headphone jack for direct zero-latency monitoring. It’s one of the best sounding USB mics we’ve heard, and a strong contender for our list. best gaming mic.
NT-USB+ is available now for $169.
The design of NT-USB+
The design of NT-USB+ is almost identical to the original NT-USB. The NT-USB+ is housed in a solid black metal body with the Rode logo neatly printed across the front in light silver. Beneath the mic’s black metal mesh grille is a blue mesh internal pop filter. Blue is the biggest aesthetic difference between NT-USB+ and NT-USB.
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To the right of the mic is a 3.5 mm high-power headphone output for zero-latency monitoring and two dials to control the mix (between the mic’s direct output and PC playback) and headphone volume levels.
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The NT-USB+ comes with a 9.8ft (3m) USB-C to USB-C cable that connects to the USB-C port on the bottom of the mic. It also comes with a removable pop shield (a rounded metal screen with a plastic frame about an inch in front of the mic) and a black tripod stand.
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The stand is made of plastic, which is relatively sturdy but fairly light and can tip over if you’re not careful. However, if it’s balanced, it does a good enough job of holding the mic up. comes with a removable ring mount for easy attachment to a boom arm (or another stand).
|bit depth||24 bit|
|cable||USB-C to USB-C (9.8ft/3m)|
|Dimensions (H x W x D)||7.2 x 2.4 x 2 inch / 184 x 62 x 50mm|
|weight||1.2lbs / 540g (without accessories)|
|Manufacturer’s suggested retail price||$169.00|
Performance of NT-USB+
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The NT-USB+ is a side-address USB microphone with a cardioid polar pattern. It records 24-bit/48 kHz audio, a step up from NT-USB’s 16-bit bit depth, with a frequency response of 20-20,000 Hz. It’s powered by USB-C and features a headphone jack for direct zero-latency monitoring. The mic works well as a plug-and-play device, but there is no on-mic gain control or mute button/switch.
The NT-USB+ produces excellent vocals that are rich and detailed, with solid low-end and very little self-noise. Featuring Rode’s ultra-low-noise, high-gain Revolution preamp technology, you’ll hear the difference with a lower noise floor, picking up louder, cleaner, crisper audio.
One problem I’ve found with NT-USB is that its gain is fairly high and it has trouble recording audio from loud sources such as musical instruments without clipping. This isn’t much of an issue for streaming, gaming, or video conferencing, but it’s worth noting if you’re looking for a mic that can be used outside of your PC. It doesn’t matter. It would be nice to see an on-mic gain control to help balance.
NT-USB+ features and software
The NT-USB+ is primarily plug-and-play, but features an internal DSP that enables advanced audio processing that can be activated using many Rode apps such as Rode Central (the branded microphone companion app), Rode Connect, etc. I’m here. (branded free podcasting and streaming software), and the newly released Rode X Unify software.
At the moment you can unlock the Compressor, Noise Gate, High Pass Filter and Aphex extensions (“Aural Exciter” and “Big Bottom”), but you can tune or configure them like a brand new Rode X mic. You can not.
Rode NT-USB+ adds Rode’s Revolution Preamp technology, advanced internal DSP, and USB-C connectivity to what was already an impressive USB condenser mic. This is a very nice (and somewhat delayed) internal update for NT-USB.
The NT-USB+ retains the solid, rugged construction of its predecessor, delivering great-sounding clean audio with a low noise floor. If you’re looking for a microphone that sounds great, look no further. However, it still struggles a bit with larger audio sources, and while the bit depth/sample rate is studio quality, it’s not hi-res. Beyerdynamic Fox Studio Microphone may be a better choice.