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The NT1 is a revolutionary new 1" diaphragm condenser microphone from RØDE.
Although the body of the new NT1 closely resembles the NT1-A, the microphone has been completely redesigned from the ground up, with the only shared component being the mesh grille.
RØDE’s design engineers approached the NT1 as a marriage of innovation and tradition, starting with the capsule which is a completely new design. Codenamed the HF6, it is the perfect example of RØDE’s fusion of artistic design approaches and cutting-edge manufacturing techniques, and features a sound signature reminiscent of the famous microphones of old while at the same time exhibiting extremely low noise.
It has been developed with a focus on detailed midrange response, coupled with silky smooth high frequencies, and warm, round, bass reproduction to make the NT1 an absolute standout in its class.
In another world-first for RØDE, the transducer itself is suspended inside the microphone using Rycote’s industry-leading Lyre system, minimizing external vibrations at the capsule level. The capsule is then married to high-grade electronics that have been designed to provide the lowest noise level of any studio microphone available. The NT1 is an incredibly quiet microphone, measuring only 4.5dBA of self-noise.
Its body is machined from 6061 aluminium and then nickel plated for resistance against corrosion. Finally it is coated in a durable, military-grade ceramic layer, using advanced electrostatic application techniques developed by RØDE to ensure an extremely hard wearing finish that is resistant to scratches or marks.
The NT1 is supplied with the revolutionary new RØDE SMR shock mount. Featuring a unique double-Lyre suspension system, the SMR enhances the existing superior vibration cancellation of Rycote’s Lyre system by using a smaller inner Lyre to act as a tensioning element. This maintains each Lyre in the neutral position where it is most efficient at cancelling vibration. The SMR’s removable all-metal pop filter is as effective as it is visually striking, providing an integrated solution for plosive protection that is easily washable and designed to last as long as the shock mount and microphone.
The NT1 is designed and made in Australia, and is covered by RØDE's industry-leading 10 year warranty.
|Acoustic Principle||Pressure Gradient|
|Active Electronics||JFET impedance converter with bipolar output buffer|
|Frequency Range||20Hz - 20kHz|
|Maximum SPL||132dB SPL (@ 1kHz, 1% THD into 1KΩ load)|
|Maximum Output Level||8.0mV|
|Sensitivity||-29.0dB re 1 Volt/Pascal (35.00mV @ 94 dB SPL) +/- 2 dB @ 1kHz|
|Equivalent Noise Level (A-weighted)||4dB-A|
|Dimensions||187.00mmH x 50.00mmW x 50.00mmD|
|Warranty||1 year with free extension to 10 years following registration here|
I gave the NT1 a try on a few vocal takes and found it very true to life. As expected, the frequency response curve on the frequency chart is near flat, with virtually no colouring of the sound. It made for some great takes.
In my opinion this is probably the most affordable professional-level large diaphragm microphone on the market – and it comes with a 10 year warranty. At the end of the day, I was in love with the sleek design and simple functionality. This mic will get the job done.
The NT1 vocal sound is crisp and detailed with plenty of warm low-end body, nothing missing or exaggerated in the midrange and an airy clarity in the top end, plus the included double-meshed pop shield does a great job and conveniently sits unobtrusively exactly where you need it.
A decent large diaphragm cardioid condenser mic should be high on the shopping list for anyone who wishes to primarily record vocals and this new NT1 is one of the best we have heard in the reasonably affordable price bracket.
The NT1 is a great mic, and not just for the money. It’s voiced with less emphasis all-round, which makes it a great all-purpose mic. It’s part of what made the U87 a classic in the first place — it just works, a lot of the time. But this is no slavish emulation, Rode has managed to capture that essence of a real workhorse with the NT1. When you wrap the fact you get a completely professional-level shockmount and pop filter thrown in, which is nothing to be sniffed at, the value just keeps getting better.
I want to emphasise that ambient room noise is all you will hear, even at high mic gains; not even a whisper of self noise from the NT1. This is an uncannily quiet microphone! In practice this means you can throw away any need to close mic quiet sources just because of self noise considerations.
I guess I had expected the NT1 to sound more or less the same as the NT1-A but as we’ll see from my recording notes, there are some significant differences with certain sound sources.
...So if you are in the market for an affordable, quality studio condenser microphone then you should pop an NT1 into your cart, you won’t be disappointed.
What's going on with the sound of the new NT1? Unlike the original, which I thought had a good deal of high-mid and top presence; the new version is a much flatter sounding mic. Self-noise is very low.
In short, this is a good bang-for- the-buck mic that won't get you in trouble with harshness. And the SMR shockmount - that's worth the price alone.
I immediately had one of those “This mic costs how much?” moments.
Overall the NT1 reminds me a slight bit of classic mics from the past—not that it’s trying to be “vintage”, but rather that it lacks the high-end profile of many mics that we have come to equate with the “modern condenser sound.”
...the new NT1 sounded surprisingly polished given its modest cost. It brings clarity to the mid-range, helping vocals sit with confidence at the front of the mix, while the top end exudes a hint of air but stops well short of sounding gritty or harsh.
Microphone choice is as much about subjectivity as it is spec sheets, but this very affordable microphone ticks a lot of boxes in both areas and definitely deserves a place on anyone's short list.
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