My video review finally uploaded to Amazon without error. It covers the points described below. Be sure to reduce your volume to a safe level before the noise demonstration begins at 0:20. If you have any problems playing it here at Amazon, the same video is on YouTube as well: ?v=qBHINqeHfyI
After just a few weeks of use, the first Rode arm started to make terrible metal-on-metal grinding/shrieking noises when bending at the middle joint. Many other reviewers have complained about this. Right out of the box, the replacement unit I received from Amazon had the same issue and more:
-- It rattled as though something inside the middle joint was loose
-- One of the plates on the end joint was loose (easily fixed with a screwdriver, but it suggests carelessness at the factory)
-- The hole in the desk mount clamp was about 5% too wide, leading to a wobbly loose fit. Some other reviewers have complained about this, too. The cylindrical post on the base of the arm measured 0.497" to 0.499" in diameter (the standard half inch size), so it was not a problem of an undersized post.
-- Internal springs are a nice idea, it certainly looks sharp
-- Internal cable routing is also a nice idea, but see the mehs section
-- The included fasteners for external cable routing are handy
-- The springs are strong enough to support a heavy load like my Blue Yeti mic + Blue Radius II shock mount (a small number of reviewers complain that their springs were too weak for this, though)
-- Value is questionable. It's 3~5 times more expensive than similar arms on Amazon. If you need to support a heavy load, the cheaper arms may not work. That was a significant factor in my initial decision to buy the Rode.
-- The tubes which don't contain springs could be used for internal cable routing, but probably only if you assemble your own cable and can feed it through before putting the connector on the end.
-- Bad quality control in recent units (purchased from Amazon in autumn 2016)
-- The joints are riveted, so you can't easily disassemble them to lubricate the springs or fix other issues yourself. Sure, you could put some low-viscosity oil in at the top and let gravity carry it down over the spring, but do you really want this thing to drip oil onto your desk at random times over the next month? I think high-viscosity grease would be more appropriate for the job, but it wouldn't be easy to open the arm up so you could put the grease where it needs to go.
TL;DR First one was noisy when bending at middle joint, second one was even worse, third is still okay after six months.