Wireless mics have come a long way in the last few years. In this post, we will look at four different systems, with a focus on the newest mics from Rode and DJI.
Sennheiser G4: The Professional Yet Unreliable Option
I invested in the Sennheiser G4 system due to its professional reputation and higher price point. However, I soon discovered that it didn't live up to my expectations. The system proved to be unreliable, plagued by constant static issues. I found myself frequently scanning for clean channels, and even when I found one, it would often become noisy during shoots. Despite its flaws, I decided to keep the G4 system as a backup, considering its initial investment.
Rode Wireless Go 2: Reliability and Versatility Combined
The Rode Wireless Go 2 system quickly became my go-to option due to its exceptional reliability and versatility. I was impressed by its consistent performance, as I never encountered any static issues. One standout feature of this system is its flexibility. With built-in microphones on each transmitter, I had the option to use it with or without a lav mic. This versatility allowed for quick setups or the use of higher-quality external microphones. Moreover, the internal recording feature provided a safety net, capturing backup audio in case of connection loss. However, it's worth noting that I experienced battery swelling after using a cheap charging case. The only true issue I ever had with the Go system is that the built-in lav mics will clip if your subject gets loud, even when they are set to the lowest level. The internal recording of the same audio, however, does not clip, making me feel like this could easily be fixed with a firmware update.
DJI Mic System: Compact and Flawless Performance
The DJI Mic system caught my attention with its compact design and promised reliability. Similar to the Rode Wireless Go 2 system, it includes a receiver with a screen and two individual transmitters. I appreciated its small size, which made it highly convenient for attaching to clothing during shoots. The system came with various accessories and a unique charging case that allowed me to charge the transmitters on the go. Most importantly, the DJI mic system delivered flawless performance, maintaining a stable connection without any static issues. Although the built-in mics don't sound quite as good as Rode's, the DJI mics have become my current wireless mic of choice.
Rode Wireless Me: The Affordable Option
The most affordable mic system of the bunch is Rode Wireless Me. Priced at $150, this system provided one transmitter, one receiver, and two microphones. Designed with influencers and content creators in mind, it offered versatility by recording the person wearing the transmitter and the person holding the camera. The updated version of the system addressed the clipping issue found in previous Rode systems, resulting in a smoother audio experience. However, it's important to consider that the Wireless Me system has a reduced range of 100 meters and lacks a screen on the receiver and internal audio recording capabilities.
The Sennheiser G4, despite its professional reputation, is plagued with audio interference. The Rode Wireless Go 2 system impressed me with its versatility, reliability, and internal recording feature. However, the clipping issue with the built-in mic was always a potential problem. The DJI Mic can basically do everything Rode can do and more, but the audio quality of the built-in microphones isn't quite as good. The Rode Wireless Me is an incredible value at $150, but the removal of some key features makes it geared toward casual shooters.
For budget-conscious users, the Rode Wireless Me system is a great choice for someone who wants mics that are incredibly easy to use. However, if you have the extra money to spend, I still think the DJI Mic is the clear winner and gives you features that you may not need today, but you will appreciate in the future.