Rode VideoMic Pro Compact VMP Shotgun Microphone
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|Recommended Uses For Product||Singing|
|Model Name||VideoMic Pro Compact VMP Shotgun Microphone|
|Connector Type||3.5 mm Jack|
|Special Feature||The RODE VideoMic Pro raises the bar set by the original RODE VideoMic, by combining broadcast quality audio with an ultra compact and lightweight ergonomic design. Incorporating new features specific to high end video, the VMP also evolves many of the features that have made the VideoMic so successful. Noise transference has been significantly reduced using both a revised, more elegant shock mounting system and a lightweight premium cable. See more|
|Audio Sensitivity||20 dB|
About this item
- Broadcast recording quality condenser microphone
- Compact design (only 150mm/6 inches length)
- Ultra lightweight (only 85g/3oz)
- 9 volt battery powered, with up to 70 hours battery life (alkaline)
- Integrated shock mounting
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Rode VideoMic Pro Compact VMP Shotgun Microphone
The Rode VideoMic Pro compact design is ideal for use with HDSLR cameras, camcorders and audio recorders. Noise transference has been significantly reduced using both a revised, more elegant shock mounting system and a lightweight premium cable.
The microphone has a broadcast-quality condenser capsule with a supercardioid pickup pattern to capture audio from the front, while minimizing pickup from the sides and rear. An integrated shockmount and foam windscreen minimize handling and wind noise to keep your recordings crystal clear.
On the rear of the mic, you'll find a 3-way level control that offers -10dB, 0dB, and +20dB modes. There is also a 2-step high pass filter with 0 and 80Hz settings, letting you minimize the impact of low frequency hum, camera motor noise, and similar distractions. The mic has a standard camera shoe and a 3/8 inch threaded mount for easy attachment to cameras and boom poles. The 1/8 inch (3.5mm) plug is compatible with a wide variety of different cameras and audio devices. The VideoMic Pro operates for up to 70 hours on a single 9V battery, allowing you to work in the field without constant replacements.
- Broadcast recording quality condenser mic
- Compact design
- Ultra lightweight
- 9 volt battery - up to 70 hours battery life
- Integrated shock mounting
- Integrated foam windshield
- 1/8 inch (3.5mm) stereo output (dual mono)
- Two step High Pass Filter (flat, 80Hz)
- Three position level control (-10dB, 0, +20dB)
- Camera shoe mount with 3/8 inch thread
Reviewed in the United States on August 8, 2012
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First of all, I did a lot of research before deciding on the Rode Videomic Pro. I looked at video's on YouTube and read many reviews on this product. I had many hopes for this product but after I received it, I was very disappointed. When I opened the box, it looked as though it had been a return and not a NEW product. The box was not damaged on the outside but the thin cardboard that holds the microphone was damaged. It's as if someone had difficulty removing the microphone from the cut-out area of the cardboard and then didn't really care how they put it back in because it was torn and crushed. I don't understand why Rode didn't put this in a styrofoam cut-out, at least for protection of the product or if not that, maybe at least some bubble wrap? But it had NOTHING to protect it, so the box is a BAD design and someone at Rode should address the quality control issue.
At $229.00, I think it is an overpriced piece of plastic! Yeah, I had all the paperwork that comes in the box, except the one to get the free Dead Cat but for the price, it should be INCLUDED, with a case! I don't think Rode is including the paperwork for the free Dead Cat anymore. Well, the problem I have with this one is it RATTLES! It is something inside the tube of the microphone that is loose. I shot some video while moving around and the rattle is heard in the video. I don't think this is normal but if anyone else has this problem, it's probably defective, at least that is what I consider defective, and needless to say I will be sending this back. I will say this, the sound quality is very good and I don't know how Rode does it with everything being plastic. The tube, that is covered with the foam rubber, is plastic, the base is plastic, and one reviewer indicated that trying to put the 9-volt battery in this thing is difficult, I would agree. Read the directions first before attempting and then good luck figuring it out. The cover for the 9 volt battery is also plastic but basically place your thumb on one side of the cover, your middle finger on the other side of the cover, and your index finger in the slot of the cover, push in and push up but be careful. Like I stated, it's plastic and it's some expensive plastic at $229.00! Also, the wire to connect it to a camera or camcorder is thin and seems like it would break easily. Why it isn't a coiled wire like the Sennheiser MKE 400 is beyond me. (The 10 foot extension cord does have a coiled male end.) Just beware and handle it carefully!
I will say, it does sound better than the built in microphone on my Panasonic HDC-TM700 but play with the settings because with the +20db setting on Videomic Pro and the TM700 set to 0db, the sound can be very distorted. I was fifteen feet away from the camera and it does pick up a lot of other sounds including the fan noise on the TM700. I found the best setting on the Videomic Pro at 0db and the TM700 also at 0db. But it will depend on what you are videoing and the distance. Make sure you do some sound test before you do some actual recording or you could have a really good video with really bad audio.
So, here is the gist of my review. Is this microphone worth $229.00? No, not in my opinion and I really think it is WAY overpriced for what you are getting...overpriced plastic! Rode should put this product in a much nicer box with it in styrofoam or at least bubble wrap. It is very possible this is why mine has the rattle because it was just bouncing around in the box during shipment with nothing to protect it, and so something got knocked loose. I also believe Rode should include the Dead Cat with the mic, and a case for the mic. Even with all that, I still consider it overpriced by about $130 bucks! It is made in Australia or that is what is printed on it. Don't know what the price of plastic is in Australia but must be difficult to manufacture or to obtain. Maybe they should have them made in the USA but then that wouldn't work because of all the government regulation they would have to deal with and then the unions would want their share. So, it's no wonder that so many companies have left the USA for China...less government regulation and don't have to deal with unions! Well, this is a whole different topic for another time. If I ruffled your feathers a little, just stop and think about it, that's all.
Anyway, like I said, I will be sending this back and hopefully I won't have too much difficulty returning it. I have been a long time customer at Amazon and I wish Amazon would sell this and not through Kellards but no matter who you buy it from, the $229.00 price seems to be the going rate. I couldn't find it any cheaper by anyone or any other website. Also, I didn't do an unboxing video of the Rode Videomic Pro, there is already plenty of those out on YouTube. I will do a video of the rattle and try to post it here if Amazon allows it and if not I will post it on YouTube. Just do a search on Rode Videomic Pro Rattle.
Two Stars for I Don't Like It, but I don't hate it. I just think Rode could do much, much better than this. No problems with service from Amazon or Kellards. Wouldn't it be nice to buy something that said "Made In The USA"? I could give five stars for quality but it isn't there yet. So, I hope Rode makes improvements to the boxing of the product as well as the product itself. I understand the plastic for weight but it WILL break easily because that is what plastic does...BREAKS! And beside, aren't just about all toys made of plastic? This isn't suppose to be a toy but if you drop it, it will be a busted $229.00 expensive piece of plastic! Hey, that's my review and if your angry, don't be, I just like to be honest and tell it like it is!
It's expensive, especially with the deadcat and mini-shoe adapter, but overall worth it if you shoot with a DSLR or intend to shoot outdoors with a camera that lacks a good wind screen.
Others have commented about the thin cable, and I agree that it is too tender. The complaints about the shock mount are unfounded. I have found it to be of an excellent build and have not had any problems with it dismounting, even when I have been less than gentle with it.
The 9 volt battery is wonderful, although please remember to take it out before going through airport security. The battery alone attracted special attention from homeland security on a recent trip. On the return flight, I removed the battery ahead of time and had no problems. The "on" light is my favorite feature (I have several powered mics with out a light, and have burnt through countless batteries in my forgetfulness).
I do teach video production, so I guess I'm a professional of sorts. I don't think I would recommend spending this much for casual video production (like home movies). You might be satisfied with a less expensive mic. Try Audio-Technica. They seem to offer decent mics for much less, however the audiophiles out there will not be pleased with anything less than the Rode VMP.
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Some people may be confused how this works properly when one may want to film with their DSLR camera. For instance, one may set the camera to 'Auto' and record with the RØDE microphone on too. What happens is, when you record a video on Auto, you are then recording with two microphones (built-in microphone and RØDE), which can create a distortion. What I do to get the best out of my audio in video with the RØDE is:
- Plug the microphone in as you do by slotting it on the top and plugging it into the mic slot.
- Turn the dial into 'Manual'.
- Go into 'Menu' and find 'Sound Recording'.
- Set the audio to 'Manual'.
- Set recording level all the way down to very bottom of the dB meter, but move it upwards at least five-six times.
- Confirm the settings.
- Flick the dials of your microphone to High Pass Filter and +20dB.
- You're ready to film!
(If I may add a comment to my review:
Get the Pro not the normal one. Based on some very misleading description mentionning 5 times PRO when it was indeed only the simple mic - luckily the seller allowed me to send it back) I first got the other one. And this one is really not recommended. It looks s**t and the little pin switches to change the settings inside the battery department are a very, very bad design idea. Also apparently, I did not try it, the mic is not nearly as good as this one. Price difference is not huge btw.)
I would like to focus on one area in my review as most other areas are dealt with fine in the multitude of other reviews here:
Many users complain that changing the battery is extremely difficult and takes 30 minutes. Some have even returned their mic due to this problem.
These reviews made me nearly not by this great device. Well, personally I think they are very wrong. Yes, it is slightly fiddly to change the battery as there is the top lid that needs a bit of pressure to click in. But it took my 30 seconds to change the battery and not 30 mins. And I am really not the most practical person on Earth. So this isue to me seems a non-issue and more due to people getting angry and maybe their hands trembling out of emotion.
In a nutshell, do not worry about the battery and if you need a good mic for a good price from a good Australian company, go for this item
I have used a directional microphone for some time, and it was fine on my older camcorders, but when I mounted it on my Panasonic X900M Full HD 1920 x 1080p (50p) 3D Ready Camcorder with Built-In Viewfinder - Black (3MOS Sensor, 23x Intelligent Zoom, 32GB Built-in Flash, SD Card Recording, Leica Dicomar Lens and Manual Control Ring) 3.5 inch LCD it was too long and was visible when shooting at wide angles. Apart from the excellent specification of the RØDE VideoMic Pro Compact Directional On-Camera Microphone, it is shorter than many other mics and so is perfect for my X900M.
The RØDE VideoMic Pro is very well made and attaches to the camcorder by a conventional shoe mount, and to the cameras audio through a 3.5mm jack plug. The integrated shock mountings minimise interference should it be knocked. All it needs, out of the box, is a 9volt battery that gives 70 hours of operation. Attach it to the camcorder, don't forget to turn it on, and you're ready to shoot.
I live on the south coast, and wind is often a problem, but as the RØDE VideoMic Pro has a foam windshield included, this minimises the problem. I used the mic to record a display by a Chinook helicopter at the Eastbourne air show, the results were superb; the clatter of the rotors didn't hide the noise of the engines and the commentary broadcast on the PA system came through loud and clear, I was very impressed.
The RØDE VideoMic Pro is good value and should last many years. In any case, it is backed by a ten year warrantee.
The mic is very light but in several months of use has proved itself sufficiently robust. It fixes and connects easily to the camera. The sound production is warm and "real" and, most importantly, is focused on the player(s) with background audience damped but giving a bit of atmosphere - [...] shows some of my early efforts. Having read other reviews I, initially, did a lot of tweaking with db gains and cuts but I've found that setting the mic and the camera bang in the middle at "0" does the trick for me - with both amplified and unamplified performances.
Two drawbacks. The battery compartment was designed by a sadist: it is very difficult to access and the accompanying diagram in the instruction leaflet is laughably misleading. The one time I've installed the battery it didn't really take too long and I didn't follow the diagram guidance....but now I've forgotten exactly how I did it! Another obvious drawback is the lack of supplied carrying case: it looks like Rode sell one for £18 (scathingly reviewed on Amazon) but I get by with an old electric-shaver pouch.
Update: February 2013
One year on with a Panasonic X900 camcorder replacing the DSLRs and the mic is still giving excellent service. No faults have developed to contradict the positives noted above...and it's even survived a couple of battery changes with no mishaps. :)
If you don't need a mic as small as this, the Rode NTG1 or NTG 2 ( the NTG2 has the option of battery power whereas the NTG1 needs a 48v supply, standard on pro video cameras) - a very solid short shotgun mic - will give you much better results. If, however, you are shooting with a DSLR or a compact video camera you probably want the VideoMic Pro.
Having said that I must emphasise that, in the majority of cases, a camera mic is a compromise. Even a directional mic should be no more than 3 feet away and pointed at the subject's mouth if you want good clean dialogue - a camera-mounted mic is no substitute for a boom or a personal/radio mic. Camera mics are useful if you are shooting documentaries with a wide-angle lens (and therefore are close to your subjects) or for picking up general ambient sound, but otherwise a mic on top of the camera is simply in the wrong place.