Rode NT1 5th Gen review (2023) a studio condenser microphone

offers a convenient and versatile solution for content producers and home studios.

The Rode NT1 5th Gen is a groundbreaking studio condenser microphone that combines the iconic sound of the original NT1 with cutting-edge technology from the next generation. It has RDE’s innovative (patent-pending) Dual Connect output, which lets you connect via XLR or USB for a lot of flexibility you can buy this product directly from Rode’s website.

Rode NT1 5th Gen: Description

It also has a world-first “unclippable” 32-bit float digital output, advanced digital signal processing, and more, all while keeping the NT1’s warm, silky sound, low noise, and high SPL handling. The NT1 5th Generation is the ultimate studio microphone. It does a great job with everything from vocals and speech to guitar, piano, drums, and percussion.

The Rode NT1 is a classic. It was the first microphone that Rode (then called Freedman Electronics) made, and it came out in the early 1990s. It was said to be so popular that sales went up “like a rat up a drainpipe.” This gave it the nickname “Rodent-1,” which was later changed to “RDE NT1.” This unproven story about how the brand got its name is probably apocryphal, but that doesn’t change the fact that the NT1 has been a popular studio mic for over 30 years.

Pros and Cons


  • Connects via USB-C and XLR
  • Includes shock mount and cables
  • 32-bit float recording


  • No on-mic controls
  • No headphone jack

Rode NT1 5th Gen: Specifications

Capsule TypePressure Gradient Condenser
Polar PatternCardioid
Frequency Response20 Hz – 20 kHz
OrientationSide Address
Dimensions (L x W)7.44 x 2.05 x 2.05 inches / 189 x 52 x 52 mm
Weight10.86 ounces / 308g
ConnectivityUSB-C, 3-pin XLR

Rode NT1 5th Gen: Design

Rode NT1 5th Gen review

The 5th Generation of the NT1 looks like the 4th Generation. It has a machined aluminum body with a matte black finish (it also comes in silver) and an HF6 capsule under a silver mesh grille that is shock-mounted on the inside. It’s 7.44 inches (189 mm) tall and 2.05 inches (51 mm) wide (52mm).

Like most of Rode’s microphones, the NT1 5th Generation feels solid and well-built, but it weighs less than it looks. The microphone itself weighs 10.86 ounces (308g), which is lighter than both the Rode NT-USB+ (1.2 pounds/540 grammes) and the Rode X XCM-50 (1.08 pounds/492 grammes).

The NT1 5th Generation is a side-address cardioid microphone, so where you put it matters. The mic sits vertically, and you talk into one side of it. A small gold dot on the mic’s neck shows which side you talk into. This is not obvious from the other side, which has Rode’s logo and the name of the mic.

The NT1 5th Generation is a dual-connect mic that can be used with both XLR (analogue) and USB-C. The USB-C port is built into the XLR connector on the bottom of the mic. To fit next to the XLR prongs, you do need a pretty skinny USB-C cable (luckily, Rode includes one).

Overall, the mic is pretty simple. There are no onboard controls for gain, volume, or mute, and there is no headphone jack for direct monitoring with no latency. This isn’t too surprising for a microphone that plugs into an audio interface, like the NT1 has been up until this generation. But many USB mics do have these features, and you may find the lack of controls annoying if you don’t plan to switch to an audio interface in the future.

Rode NT1 5th Gen: All In One

Rode NT1 5th Gen review

Unlike many USB mics, the NT1 5th Gen can only be used as an input. It doesn’t have its own headphone output. It also doesn’t have a physical volume knob. As we’ll see, this isn’t always a problem. If you want to record something on the spot and don’t need to listen to it, you could just plug in and start.

But you’ll need to install the Rode Connect utility for most uses. This lets you connect multiple Rode USB devices and mix cues with low latency. It also shows that the NT1 is doing a lot more than just changing from A to D.

When you click on the NT1 icon in Rode Connect, an editing window pops up with several parameters that you can’t change with the mic itself or when it’s used as an analogue source. First is a gain control that goes from 0 to +60 dB in 1 dB steps. Below this, there are radio buttons for a high-pass filter that can be turned on at either 75 or 150 Hz, but that’s not all.

In the last 30 years, Rode has grown a lot, and they have bought up other companies. One of those companies was Aphex, which made the original Aural Exciter enhancer and Compellor compressor. Their designers’ knowledge was put to good use in the NT1 5th Gen. There are four icons to the right of the gain control that turn on noise gate, compressor, Aural Exciter, and Big Bottom processing with a single button press. These are digitally made and only have an on/off button as a control. However, since they come…

Rode NT1 5th Gen: Performance

Rode NT1 5th Gen review

The Rode NT1 5th Generation has the same sound quality as the NT1 from the last generation, which is great. There’s a reason it’s become such a standard in the recording world: its warm, natural sound is perfect for capturing earthy vocals, whether you’re singing or talking through your latest Valorant match.

At the same time, its sound has a lot of small details. I used Audacity to test the microphone by recording both spoken words and my acoustic guitar. I don’t have a natural radio voice, but the NT1 did a good job of giving me just a little bit more presence without using the proximity effect When I wanted a little more “oomph,” leaning in made the sound warmer and gave me that extra bit of body I was looking for.

The fact that you don’t need to do that is one of the best things about this microphone. Over the months that I’ve been using the Rode Caster Pro II, I’ve found a set of vocal FX settings that let me sound my best while keeping the microphone at a comfortable distance for recording, streaming, and taking video calls. Even though Rode Connect doesn’t have all of the features of the Rode Caster, it does have the most important effects to get a great sound for streaming and recording vocals.

RODE Connect isn’t the only programme with extra FX, but the way it shows them off is one of the best. Along with the usual set of dials, it shows you what the microphone is picking up on the screen. For the noise gate, when you’re quiet, a bubbling line at the bottom of the graph shows your room noise.

Final Words

The Rode NT1 5th Generation microphone is very good. It’s advertised as a studio condenser, but it’s also a great choice for streamers and content creators. The warm, natural, and detailed tone is great for recording anything from spoken words to singing to instruments, and the 32-bit float feature is a great safety net.

But what I really like about RODE’s implementation of USB is that they went above and beyond. They could have just let it connect, made it different from the NT1-USB by adding 32-bit float, and called it a day.

Instead, they gave it a built-in DSP and ultra-quiet pre-amps and used it as a way to introduce streamers and content creators to RODE Connect, which has a lot of great features. RODE didn’t just use USB connectivity as a basic way to connect. Instead, they used it as a gateway to a lot more features, which makes this a great buy for $259.


Which is better Rode NT1 or Shure SM7B?

Due to the different technology inside, the Shure SM7B is likely more reliable and durable than the Rode NT1. The Shure SM7B is a dynamic microphone with an internal design that is more rugged, more durable, and can usually take a better beating.

Is Rode NT1 better than NT1-A?

The main difference between the two is that the NT1 sounds more neutral, while the NT1A sounds more coloured. There are a few other small differences between them, but they aren’t big.

Editorial Staff
Editorial Staff
The Bollyinside editorial staff is made up of tech experts with more than 10 years of experience Led by Sumit Chauhan. We started in 2014 and now Bollyinside is a leading tech resource, offering everything from product reviews and tech guides to marketing tips. Think of us as your go-to tech encyclopedia!


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The NT1 5th Generation is a revolutionary studio condenser microphone that combines the classic sound signature of the legendary NT1 with state-of-the-art technology.Rode NT1 5th Gen review (2023) a studio condenser microphone