Head of Audio Production, Dr. Paul Doornbusch, recently tested out the new RODE NT1 – here’s what he had to say about it.

We have a pretty decent microphone locker at Collarts – famous names and industry standards along with unusual microphones. Recently the RODE rep was here at Collarts and showed me their new NT1 – that is an old name in RODE microphone, but this is different, only the name is the same and they have completely redesigned and rebuilt the microphone. When the rep opened up the microphone and showed me what it looked like, I could immediately see the different capsule and the more modern manufacturing that went into it (the inside of the microphone is the image above). The RODE rep said he’d put it up against any microphone, so I begged to borrow it for a few days.

One of our audio students, Gil (who is in his final Trimester at Collarts) was about to record some vocals for a student demo, so I encouraged him to test out the new NT1. Traditionally the Neumann U87 has been the favourite vocal microphone for students here – and with good reason as it has been used on countless hit records. I asked Gill to put up the new NT1 against the U87. The two microphones were put head to head (literally, on the mic stands) to get them as close as possible and Gil recorded some vocal takes. There was a difference between the two microphones, the U87 is known for its ‘presence bump’, but with a little EQ, they sounded surprisingly alike.

Have a listen to the three recordings below and see which one you like. One of them is the U87, one is the raw NT1, and the other the equalised NT1 – can you pick which is which?

Click here to listen the recording

Click here to see the answers.