Rode X is the new gaming sub-brand from the Australian microphone stalwart

Gaming creators and streamers will already be accustomed to Rode. The corporate’s and make good choices for these plugging into OBS, YouTube, Twitch and anyplace else you may “go stay.” However as of right now, there’s an entire new sub model particularly catering to their wants: Rode X.

The primary three merchandise beneath the brand new mark embrace two microphones and a complete desktop app for stream routing and mixing. The mics will look eerily acquainted to followers of Rode merchandise, however the firm assures us they’ve been “redesigned internally for optimum efficiency for streaming and gaming.”

The brand new mics are the XDM-100 ($249) and XCM-50 ($150). The clue to the distinction between them is within the identify – D for dynamic, C for condenser (you possibly can learn in regards to the distinction ). The XDM-100, not less than bodily, seems to be like Rode’s with a touch of purple on the high. The XCM-50 is a condenser microphone that seems to be constructed on the identical platform because the and contains a distinct purple button on the entrance.

Two new Rode microphones pictured next to the Rode NT-USB Mini

James Trew / Engadget

Each microphones are USB solely (no XLR), which suggests you received’t want an audio interface to make use of them, they usually have built-in headphone ports for latency-free monitoring. Which of the 2 may curiosity you most will rely on each your preferences and the room the place you stream from.

The XCM-50 has a shiny sound that can work effectively for these in acoustically handled, or “softer” rooms. When examined facet by facet with its NT-USB Mini doppelganger, they do sound extremely shut, however to my ears the XCM-50 is a tiny bit brighter sounding. The NT-USB Mini sounds a shade “nearer” by comparability.

The XDM-100 has a extra basic “dynamic” microphone sound. Whereas maybe not fairly as effectively rounded as one thing just like the Shure SM7B and even Rode’s personal Podmic, it feels cleaner than the Podcaster that it shares its bodily look with. If you’d like an excellent USB dynamic possibility, this looks like a aggressive selection for the worth. Particularly as soon as coupled with the brand new Unify software program.

The one factor that a variety of avid gamers and streamers really want isn’t a lot a microphone – there are numerous choices for that – it’s a dependable instrument to route all of the sounds in your stream, often some mixture of recreation sounds, chat, music and results. With Unify, you might have a easy software program resolution that’s just like the routing matrices you discover with the GoXLR, the or Elgato’s .

Rode X unify software.


Unify creates a few digital audio interfaces in your PC and you’ll then management which app makes use of what, and the place that sound goes. For instance, you most likely need your intro music to exit on the stream, however perhaps you don’t need it in your headphones? Or perhaps you need your viewers to listen to a YouTube video you’re taking part in, however not the music you’re streaming. With Unify, you possibly can pipe most issues to most locations, after which change the degrees, or “combine” for every vacation spot additionally.

Rode has added the flexibility to report all of your audio straight inside the app, too. This makes it interesting to extra than simply streamers. For instance, you might use it to report either side of a Zoom name and be capable of feed audio into that decision that may in any other case be difficult. The truth that Unify has sound pads for intros and results means it additionally works fairly effectively as a software program “Rodecaster Professional.”

Unify seems to be most just like Wave Hyperlink however presents rather more fine-grained management. The app isn’t fairly so simple as BEACN’s, which helps you to entry every combine matrix always and has a barely clearer UI. BEACN additionally advantages from the {hardware} mixer, too, however there’s no choice to report inside that app or set off sound results.

The place Unify differs from most of its rivals is that you simply don’t have to purchase the corporate’s {hardware} to make use of it. When you simply wished the software program options you possibly can pay $5 a month or $45 a yr for the app alone. This implies you possibly can simply use it with any microphone you might have, you’re not beholden to utilizing a Rode (in contrast to, Wave Hyperlink that requires an Elgato mic). When you do purchase a Rode X mic, then the software program is free. Sadly, should you already personal a Rode USB mic, it received’t unlock the software program, you may be paying like all people else.

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