Here is my review of the ≈US$100 Samson Satellite multi-pattern electret condenser iOS/iPadOS/USB microphone with ≈US$7 Aokeo attachable pop filter. This is also a comparison with Samson’s headless Q2U with the Shure presidential A81WS, which I already reviewed previously and have continued to use extensively when out of the studio. Ahead you’ll read my detailed observations and listen to the test recordings.
What comes included with the Samson Satellite
Samson Satellite USB/iOS microphone with built-in legs
Micro-USB to USB-A cable
Micro-USB to cable
Limited 2-Year warranty
Samson recommends the Satellite microphone for computers via and mobile devices via
Here is my review of the US$349 Apogee Hype Mic, the first microphone I have ever tested with an inboard compressor. Some readers will recall that in the past, I tested a microphone with an undisclosed hardware limiter, but not a compressor. In the case of the Hype Mic from Apogee, the inboard compressor is analog, so when it’s active your signal remains analog until after being dynamically compressed: Only then does it become digitized. Ahead you’ll read my detailed observations and can listen to eight audio clips.
Here is my review of the VideoMic NTG from RØDE. The VideoMic NTG is the first hybrid shotgun I’ve ever tested, with several attractive features and technology borrowed by the new NTG5 microphone I already reviewed. Hybrid means that the VideoMic NTG has both analog and the latest digital USB-C. I even made a video at 200 feet (≈61 meters) from the camera, thanks to an under-promoted accessory. The VideoMic NTG has an internal battery with a rated runtime of 30+ hours, and the analog output automatically detects whether the connected device is TRS (i.e. a camcorder or recorder)
The new Fujifilm X-T4 camera is both WorldCam and CinemaCam! This means that it can record formats for worldwide television and even for digital theaters (DCI). Its features for video/cinema/audio go almost all the way. In its price range, it greatly surpasses Sony’s cameras for several of my pet peeves, and go almost as far (with video/cinema) as the Panasonic GH5(s). There is even one detail where the Fujifilm X-T4 beats the GH5(s) with its audio. Ahead in this article I’ll point out all of that and more. I’ll also embedded a Fujifilm X-T4 video review from colleagues Chris Nichols
Here is my review of the Samson G-Track Pro large-diaphragm multi pattern microphone with optional G-Track Pro Pop Filters, which are also from Samson. I had seen so many reviews where the G-Track Pro sounded great, but suffered from severe plosives, I was anxious to try it with the matching G-Track Pro pop filters (two of them). I needed two for use with another person with the Figure 8 pattern. Read ahead to learn how this mic interfaces via USB with a standard computer, required workarounds to use it with different mobile devices, how it sounds with different pickup patterns
While I prepare an unusual review and test of the new VideoMic NTG camera-mountable shotgun mic with technology borrowed from the NTG5 (which I recently reviewed), you can try to win a new RØDE NT-USB Mini microphone. The NT-USB Mini is a smaller, more modern version of the original NT-USB mic I reviewed years ago. According to RØDE, “The NT-USB Mini is a sleek, compact USB microphone that offers studio-quality recording direct to a computer or tablet.” Ahead is more information about the NT-USB Mini (including a video) as well as the rules, deadline and link to participate.
Here is my review of the Saramonic SmartRig+ portable audio interfaces, which handle two channels of audio, either XLR balanced or TRS unbalanced. Yes, they offer switchable phantom power for the former and bias voltage (“plugin power”) for the latter. They feature a pair of surprisingly powerful preamps (even for dynamic mics), ADC (analog-to-digital converters) and DAC (digital-to-analog converters) for playback. The ADC can be set to allow for discrete 2-track recordings or to combine the two into a dual mono signal, more appropriate for live broadcast or live-to-drive, with little or no post-production. There are models available for either
I have been covering Adobe Rush ever since it was in beta in June 2018. I really want to love it, but it’s hard when they keep screwing up the audio. In the video world, we have an absolute standard which means that the audio sampling must always be at 48 kHz (or some higher multiple), never at 44.1 kHz. Other iOS and Android apps handle this correctly, including Auphonic, Cinema FV–5, FiLMiC Pro, MoviePro and RØDE Reporter. DoubleTake initially did it wrong, but has committed to fixing it ASAP in a private email to me. Strangely, Adobe seems
As announced at Apple’s WWDC in June 2019, DoubleTake is an app from FilMiC Pro which allows multicam recording in up to 1080p. Currently for iOS on certain iPhones, the free DoubleTake app offers framerates like ≈24, ≈25 or ≈30 fps at VFR, as covered in prior articles. The problem is the current version uses an audio sampling frequency that is non-standard for video. It is completely reasonable to have a reduced, non-premium feature set in a freemium model, but it’s just wrong to be non-standard.
In my humble opinion, with only offering 44.1 kHz, DoubleTake is like offering
Ever since Canon added the previously missing ≈23.976p (aka “23.98p”) framerate in 1080p via a free firmware update, many users declared the “Rich Port” camcorder “perfect” except for the short battery life. Thankfully, a solution is being offered by a third-party company in the form a a battery grip. At US$100, the Canon EOS RP Battery Grip from Poland costs only US$21 more than Canon’s own US$79 EG-E1 Extension Grip which sadly does not extend battery life. Ahead is a video and more information about this welcome solution, and a link to my prior article about the Canon
The AKG Lyra microphone has a striking, vintage-looking yet state-of-the-art look. Unlike many inexpensive replicas of the Elvis type (rounded) mics, which look nice in photos but cheap when seen in real life, the AKG Lyra appears to be just as authentic and solid as they appear in promotional photographs. Because of the unusual terminology AKG uses to describe the Lyra’s multiple patterns, it is not always obvious what they mean. However, AKG’s visual diagrams are indeed accurate, so I’ll provide my translation from AKG Lyra terms to standard industry terms. Read ahead to learn how this mic interfaces via
The unusual name of the Canon EOS RP mirrorless hybrid camera reminds me of the English translation of the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico: Rich Port. (The model is indeed EOS RP, even though you can’t immediately see the second letter on the front of the body.) I am quite surprised how few of my video colleagues have even heard about this full-frame camera/camcorder which you can currently get new for only US$999 (body only). I have several things to applaud about it beyond its full-frame sensor, picture quality and impeccable continuous autofocus, and a few details I would improve.
Back in November 2019, I reviewed and published speed tests of Plugable’s Thunderbolt 3 NVMe SSD (link ahead). Now Plugable is offering a new, lower-capacity 512GB at a corresponding lower price if US$199, with a temporary discount of US$20 at US$179. Ahead is a link to my November review, the press release and purchase link.
At CES 2020 in Las Vegas, Nevada, United States, Samson has just unveiled its new Q9U, a dynamic hybrid microphone for studio use. After Samson’s own Q2U and Audio Technica’s similar pair of ATR-2100 & AT2005USB (all of which I began to review in 2012), there was stagnation in hybrid mic innovation, until very recently. For those unfamiliar, hybrid microphones are those which offer both a broadcastable analog output and a digital output. Although there have been a plethora of microphones of each type (analog or digital), there have been very few hybrid models offering both broadcastable outputs… until RØDE
Although I am the first to admit that there are about 3 advanced video production apps that are still exclusive for iOS, this article is about 5 Android advantages compared with iOS in 2020. First, I’ll review 3 iOS-only apps for extremely advanced video tasks. Then I’ll go into the 5 unique Android advantages which are the reasons why my primary mobile phone is not an iPhone, although I absolutely continue to use macOS on my laptop. I’m a very happy Mac/Android guy who loves the combination, despite the nonsense “lack of synchronization” myth promoted by uninformed naysayers.
I just received review samples of the Saramonic SmartRig+ portable audio interfaces, which handle two channels, either XLR balanced or TRS unbalanced. Yes, they offer optional phantom power for the former and bias voltage (“plugin power”) for the latter. They feature a pair of surprisingly powerful preamps (even for dynamic mics), ADC (analog-to-digital converters) and DAC (digital-to-analog converters) for playback. The ADC can be set to allow for discrete 2-track recordings or to combine the two into a dual mono signal, more appropriate for live broadcast or live-to-drive, with little or no post-production. They use a are available for USB-C
I just received the AKG Lyra to review it. This unusual microphone has a striking, vintage-looking yet state-of-the-art look. Unlike many inexpensive replicas of the Elvis type (rounded) mics, which sadly look cheap when seen in real life, the AKG Lyra looks just as authentic and solid as in photographs. It also has inboard latency-free monitoring.
The US$295 1080p Blackmagic ATEM Mini video mixer (“switcher”) is amazing for the price, especially with its 10-bit 4:2:2 processing, DVE and linear keyers (luma or chroma). The ATEM MINI supports PNG with alpha channel for translucent graphics and lower thirds. It’s great that the ATME MINI has a built-in scaler to work ideally whether your 1080HD cameras output a pure progressive video signal at the native framerate… or even authentic 1080i interlaced video (sigh) if that’s what you have. However, with the current software/firmware, the ATEM Mini (or any other ATEM) sadly does not consider the existence of the
In addition to the new US$2495 “Pocket” Cinema Camera 6K with EF mount, you’ll be blown away by the new DaVinci Resolve beta 16.1. Watch the webinar and learn about the Source Overwrite, Live Overwrite, Face Detection Closeup, Sync Window (for material which lacks timecode), Sync Bin in Resolve; external timecode on the “Pocket” Cinema 4K; free Blackmagic RAW Speed Test and more.
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On Beyond Podcasting episode 16, Anthony Mattana discusses 3D binaural audio recording, distribution and consumption with me. Anthony Mattana is the founder of Hooke Audio and the creator of the Hooke Verse headset I recently covered here in ProVideo Coalition (link ahead). Listen to the audio interview ahead.