DJI MIC vs RØDE WIRELESS GO II – A DEFINITIVE COMPARISON!
2. were going to dig deep tons of detail no time to waste, so lets get stuck in Music, stuart carroll here a pleasure to talk to you, as always, as you can see, im recording on the rode wireless code 2 and the new dji microphone. These are the transmitters and both of them record internally, backup tracks, if you like or just can be used as external sound recorders. Without the receiver system, we have omnidirectional microphones in both of them and internal memory and internal battery so were using them in this field. Recorder state im not taking it through a camera preamp or a sound recorder or through a phone or anything like that. We just want a clear comparison of the two systems here without any third party gear, muddying the waters and to jump ahead, both of them sound. Absolutely fantastic so in terms of audio quality, youre going to be very happy with either of these systems. This video is broken into three sections in the first section were going to look at some features that are unique to the dji system. It is a newer product and, as a consequence, theres some functionality in there that the road wireless go to simply doesnt have so we cant really compare it in the second section were going to make a comparison of all the things that can be compared and in The third section were going to look at some tests to see how these microphones perform in different scenarios.
There are time stamps in the description below, so you can jump ahead if you want and as with any product review or comparison, i dont know what your needs and your wants are. I dont know what your priorities are so its hard for me to say, for example, that the dji system is better because it has a charging case. Maybe you dont care about that charging case, for example, so, im going to give you lots of information to help you make up your own mind, full disclosure dji sent us our wireless microphone system wrote, did not we paid for it with our own hard earned cash, But im not here to promote either of these products. I just want to give you information. We dont even have an affiliate link with the dji microphone system, so were making no money from this whatsoever and they have no input in this video either djis. Offering is newer and therefore it has some functionality. The road wireless go to does not most visibly. We get this hard shell charging case theres a 2 600 milliamp battery built into that case. That can charge the two transmitters and the receiver twice, depending on your use case for your microphones. This can be tremendously useful. One of the things that we did in the past was film weddings. Now, not only are you transporting these little devices from a to b, so the shell keeps it nice and safe, but youre charging as you go without a case like this youre left charging two rode wireless co2, transmitters and a receiver via usbc thats, three separate devices That need charged with three separate power sources in a studio environment with power sockets everywhere.
That might not be such a big deal but out in the field. This charging case is really really useful. With both these systems, the transmitters and the receivers are already paired, but if you did lose your connection for some reason, it is pretty easy to repair with the rode wireless go 2, but the dji charging case takes it one step further, its also a pairing device. As soon as you drop the two transmitters and the receiver in there, they repair essentially taking a look at the receivers. The dji mic has a beautiful touch screen from which all of the parameters of both the receiver and the transmitters are controlled by comparison. The road receiver is controlled by its three buttons, whilst its not as contemporary approach as the dji system, theyre perfectly functional and they get the job done, but unfortunately they dont get the entire job done to access full control of the receiver and the transmitter parameters. We need to use the rode central app which is available both on your computer and your phone. It too is perfectly functional and gets the job done, but ultimately being able to control every single parameter of your transmitters and your receiver from the touchscreen on a receiver is a far superior approach. A really nice feature on the touchscreen is, when you open the case. Youre able to instantly see your battery levels for your two transmitters and your receiver. In addition to that, youre able to see the remaining internal memory left on those two transmitters lets talk about individual gain control of the two transmitters on dji system.
Via the touch screen on the receiver, we can control the gain levels of the two transmitters independently. This is huge if youre doing an interview, and one person is talking really loud and one person is talking quietly, you can set appropriate gain levels for both of those transmitters by comparison, the road wireless go to does not give us independent gain control of its two Transmitters, the gain level is adjusted simultaneously on both of those transmitters via the receiver. Added to that, the receiver does not have gain control, so we just have this global gain. Control of the transmitters and the receiver combined by comparison. The receiver on the dji system also has gain control, so we can make a global adjustment, for example, if were connected to a camera, and we need to turn the levels down a little bit to cope with a hot preamp that, in our case the panasonic gh5 Has we can make that global adjustment, given how important it is to set your audio levels properly to avoid clipping, while youre recording having this extra flexibility of independent gain control of your two transmitters, plus an additional gain control on your receiver is very, very valuable. Dji has brought us some real innovation in terms of connectivity, particularly to smartphones. We have these little clicking adapters that go into your receiver, so you can directly connect your receiver to your iphone or your android smartphone. This is a really neat system because, rather than having to find a bracket with a cold shoe mount for the receiver, that also holds your phone.
You can just plug the receiver straight into your phone. It also does away with the need for that cable connection between your receiver and your phone. Now, in the case of an iphone, things are a little bit complicated because you need an mfi, cable and made for iphone usbc to lightning cable dont. Do what i did and buy the cheapest one you can find on amazon. It wont work, definitely get the rode one. You know its going to work, but it does cost 20 to 25 give or take so youve got to keep that in mind when youre, comparing the price of these two systems, sticking with the unique characteristics of the dji system. If you want to transfer your internal recordings from a transmitter to your computer, simply connect it by way of a usb cable and it will recognize the transmitter as an external hard drive. Thereafter, you can just drag and drop those files delete them individually, copy them all across to another hard drive. Do whatever you want, as you would an external hard drive now. This might sound kind of obvious if youve never used a rode wireless go to. But if you want to get your files off a road transmitter, you make that usb connection. Then you go into the rode central app. You pick every individual file one by one, and then you export those files with your chosen settings and they are saved accordingly. Im not gon na lie.
This is a pretty cumbersome way of doing things added to that theres, no bulk export option, so you cant just select them all and then export according to the settings youve chosen and you cant delete individual files either, depending on your use case scenario. The impact of this could range from mild inconvenience to absolutely maddening if youre a wedding filmmaker and you come back with two transmitters filled with six hours of audio. You dont want to be sitting there, one by one going through those clips and exporting them. Weve discussed pretty much all of the features that are unique to the dji system, but in the interests of fairness, are there any features that are unique to the rode wireless go 2 system that dji does not have the most valuable feature i could find in that Respect is the built in pad in the rode wireless go to system pad, stands for passive attenuation device, its a way of essentially compressing the signal. If things get very very loud, a little bit like a limiter, you could say now. Obviously, the implementation of that has to be good for it to have any value and ive done a fair few tests, and i think the pad is indeed very, very valuable. Well, show you that in part three, but suffice to say the dji system has neither a pad nor a limiter in its settings now ill also show you in part three that theres no need to have clipping in either of these systems.
If you set your gain correctly and perhaps use the pad in the case of the rode wireless go to youre, not going to get clipping audio. Another nice feature that sits within the rode central app is the ability to look at the waveform for the audio that youve captured through the receiver into your camera, for example, and see automatically if there are any dropouts in that waveform. These are, after all, wirelessly transmitted. Audio signals so theres a risk of interference not having to sit and look through a two hour interview, for example, to see if there are any dropouts and having some visual depiction instead. So you know where to use your backup track is very valuable. The only other feature i could find is that the rode wireless go to gives you the option of recording compressed audio, therefore giving you much longer recording times on the internal memory inside your transmitter. If you record compressed audio, then youll enjoy about 40 hours or so record time on the internal memory inside your transmitter, the dji system doesnt offer compressed audio recording. Instead, we move to the next level, which is 24 bit uncompressed audio capture. The dji transmitters have eight gigabytes of internal storage and can capture 15 hours of uncompressed 24 bit audio by comparison, the road transmitters can capture around seven hours of uncompressed audio. Now they dont actually state what their internal memory is, but its pretty clear, theres about four gigabytes.
There give or take both systems break long recordings down into 30 minute chunks and when the internal memory is full things cycle back to the start, and the original files are overwritten so be sure to copy your files across regularly to avoid any lost data. Okay, weve crossed over into a comparison of the features that these two systems have in common, so lets move into part two now and dig a little bit deeper. As you know, both systems provide us with two transmitters and one receiver. If we look at the transmitters for a second, both of them weigh roughly the same, but the dji transmitter is significantly smaller. All else being equal, smaller in my opinion, is better. It makes it easier to hide whether its up on a shirt collar or whether its in your pocket and theres, a lav mic coming out smaller, is better its more discreet speaking of discretion. The high gloss and liveried finish of the wireless go transmitters, doesnt, exactly scream at discretion, and ever since they came out with the original wireless go, i did wonder: wow thats a little bit. Uh conspicuous! Shall we say if you see it clipped onto someones shirt, now countering my assumptions on that. I think that could be one of the reasons for the success of this product because we see youtubers and influencers using these microphones and we go thats cool ill get one of those. So i have nothing but praise for road and for their system.
I just wonder if now might be the time to just tone it down a little bit with the high gloss branded finish that one is very much a personal opinion. So you are, of course, welcome to disagree, because the clip on the dji transmitter is metal combined with a little magnet thats, provided we have some magnetic mounting options that are genuinely useful for our most recent youtube videos ive been using this little tripod with the dji Transmitter magnetically attached to a little ball head mount at the top. Finally, the little magnet doubles as a stand. If you want to set the transmitter upright on a table. As you know, one of the best features about both of these systems is the ability to record a backup track internally to the storage inside both of these transmitters, perhaps learning from the journey that road has been on. In this respect, the approach taken by dji is somewhat more refined. We have a dedicated start, stop record button on the transmitter lets say you have the receiver connected to your camera, for example, and you are transmitting audio wirelessly to your camera. You want to backup track. You press record on the transmitter. It doesnt start automatically. You need to remember to do that if you want a backup track captured thanks to an update, we basically have the same functionality on the rode wireless go to only its a little bit more clunky, because we have to get our settings dialed in in the rode Central app, if we set our record mode to always, then when we switch on the road transmitter, it automatically starts recording, irrespective of whats going on with the receiver and your camera.
Alternatively, set your recording to backup and it will only start recording when the receiver is switched on in terms of the windshields. Both transmitters employ a twist lock mechanism to ensure they dont fall off a nice touch with the road system. Is we get three windshields? So a spare with the dji system we get two wrapping up in the transmitters. The road transmitter has a stated battery life of seven hours versus five and a half hours for dji. Now i havent done the tests myself, because i think both those numbers are perfectly workable and perfectly acceptable. But i have seen it said that if youre capturing uncompressed audio on the road transmitter, which is the same uncompressed audio youre getting with dji, then the battery life falls to lets, say six and a half hours, so maybe on a apples and apples. Comparison youre looking at six and a half hours versus five and a half hours lets talk about the receivers as weve already established. The dji receiver has this beautiful touch screen which brings complete functionality to both the transmitters and the receivers. I think its a huge benefit of the dji system, its impossible to get away from that, if were comparing with the button system on the road receiver, which has to be combined with the functionality of the rode central app added to that, we have another big win For the dji receiver and thats a dedicated 3.5 millimeter headphone monitoring jack, the road receiver does have a 3.
5 millimeter output that can be used for headphone monitoring but in all likelihood, thats going to be occupied with the trs cable connecting that receiver to your camera. As a consequence, if your camera itself doesnt have a headphone monitoring jack, then you could find yourself stuck here. I tried a third party adapter to see if i could convert the usbc into a headphone jack, but i couldnt get it to work. If, however, you are using the usbc to connect the receiver to a computer or a phone for example, then it will free up the headphone jack for monitoring. One thing i noticed is that the headphone monitoring levels on the road receiver are very quiet. By contrast with the dji receiver, the levels are quite acceptable and theres also a volume adjustment for your headphones in the settings. Both these receivers give you the option of recording the audio from your two transmitters separately as independent mono channels. This way, when we bring the files from our two transmitters into our editing software, we can play around with the levels, eq etc independently. On those two files. Alternatively, you can record both those transmitters in stereo or merged, as rode calls it and youll get one output file from both those transmitters. You can also take advantage on both these systems of the stereo recording option to capture a safety track if youre using one transmitter. The first track will be recorded at the audio levels you set on your transmitter or your receiver or your camera, depending on how youve got things set up, but you also have a safety channel on the other stereo track at a lower decibel level.
To give you even more protection, if you had things coming in a little bit hot on the transmitters, both receivers. Allow you to mute your transmitters, but dji takes it one step further with the touch screen again, you can mute the transmitters. You can start stop recording you can format your transmitters and, most importantly, you can control the gain levels of the two transmitters independently. A small but useful feature in the road. Central app is the ability to dim the led lights on the road transmitters. Unfortunately, you cant switch them off, which could be useful in certain situations now, unless ive missed something on the dji transmitters, theres, no way to dim the lights and theres no way to switch them off. The rode wireless go to has a stated line of sight range of 200 meters. Dji claims to give us 250 meters lets jump outside to see how they do in a real world scenario, ill spare you the workings and get straight to the results. I clipped the transmitters to the collar of my t shirt on the front of my body, even when i was turned away from the receiver with my body blocking the signal. Both of them did very well up to 50 meters from 50 meters to 150 meters. Both of them struggled when i was walking away from the camera with my body blocking the signal, but both of them gave clean signals when i was facing the camera.
If i had to pick a winner, there were less dropouts from dji, as i was walking away from the receiver, but ultimately, as i was facing the cameras, both systems did well lets, have a quick, listen, 150 meters and then well crack on hows. That going when i face you, can you hear me, can you hear all these cars going past? Do we have a nice clear signal at 150 meters? Well, if i turn around hows the signal 150 meters away, what if i turned around, i wouldnt have thought itd be working now i thought so one two, three four: five, six, seven, eight nine ten hows that going 150 meters away a quick word on export formats. As you know, both of these systems capture 24 bit uncompressed audio – there are no export formats for the dji system. You simply connect the transmitter to your computer and copy the files across its a simple transfer. No export takes place. Unfortunately, with the road system we have to go into the road, central app, select the files and pick an export setting. Now you can export as compressed audio kind of mp3 style. You can export uncompressed, which is the native file format that we captured at, or you can export it 32 bit float just to clarify. The fact that you can export at 32 bit has no bearing on what you captured at its like an upscaled resolution. Essentially, an upscaled version of that 24 bit audio youre, still exporting 24 bit audio at the end of the day.
Now rode themselves say that this could give you some benefits if youre working with a daw or the digital audio workstation environment, i dont have any personal experience of that. So you can. Let me know if that is beneficial and it also opens the door for future updates of the system, so they they leave the door open that maybe one day these mics will capture 32 bit float audio, but at the moment they dont so dont. Make that confusion. Both of them capture audio at 24, bit uncompressed, were recording internally to these two transmitters via the omnidirectional mics that are built in now to get a similar recording level from both devices. We have very different gain settings on the rode wireless go to. We have minus 30 db, with the pad on so were going for maximum protection against clipping, basically because im right, close up against the microphones. Now by comparison, the levels arent quite as hot on the dji mic so were on plus 12 db. The complete opposite weve got the transmitter, turned up to plus 12 decibels, so things dont come in too quiet. How does it sound? Do they both sound? Quite nice? I suspect they both sound, quite rich, lets, listen to the room tone and see how much history is with these levels. This is by no means a sound treated room. There is a little bit of echo in here, and this light. Thats right up, close and personal has a very audible fan.
Noise coming from it ill raise the volume of my voice. Now, do a clipping test see what happens if i get dead excited, oh im, dead excited were talking about. Microphones, oh, is it clipping? I wonder if its clipping, it looks like its clipping there on the levels, is the pad protecting us on the road wireless go to and do i have the levels a little bit too hot on the dji mic ill, raise the volume of my voice. Now. Do a clipping test see what happens if i get dead excited, oh im, dead excited were talking about. Microphones, oh, is it clipping? I wonder if its clipping, it looks like its clipping there on the levels is the pad protecting us on the rode wireless go to and do i have the levels a little bit too hot on the dji mic same test with the pad switched off on the Wire lets go to one two, three, four one, two, three four, i cant believe how excited i am about microphones. Is it clipping more this time because i dont have the pad on on the wireless go to whats clear. To me from these tests is that both systems are very accommodating when it comes to unexpectedly loud noises, even though, were clearly seeing the levels going to the red on both receivers, the audio tracks are still quite good, and the level of clipping is not that bad. With both of these devices, we get a really nice clean, audio recording, so if, in doubt, dial those levels all the way back and you can boost the sound levels in post, even if you have to make significant gain adjustments in post, we found that it doesnt Introduce unacceptable levels of hiss into the recording ill do a quick test of that here lets imagine im a groom at a wedding ceremony.
I take the so and so to be my lawful wedded, wife, im whispering because im emotional im a bit embarrassed. Theres lots of people looking, oh, my goodness, you get that sound recording back. What am i going to do with that im, literally speaking about as quietly as i can right now, im nice and close to the microphones, but were going to have to boost those levels in post? Let me show you that you can do that without introducing too much hiss ill. Do a quick test of that here lets imagine im a groom at a wedding ceremony. I take the so and so to be my lawful wedded, wife, im whispering because im emotional im a bit embarrassed, theres lots of people looking, oh, my goodness, you get that sound recording back. What am i going to do with that im, literally speaking about as quietly as i can right now, im nice and close to the microphones, but were going to have to boost those levels in post? Let me show you that you can do that without introducing too much hiss weve been going for maximum audio quality here, so ive been speaking really close to these microphones, because theyre omnidirectional, if i turn them around things, should still sound pretty good. The only thing is, if i put them further away thats about three feet now but arms length give or take there will be a noticeable deterioration in the clarity of that audio one.
Two, three, four: five, six, seven, eight one, two three, four, five, six, seven eight. If you really wanted your microphone, this far away, youd benefit from a shotgun microphone instead of using the omnidirectional microphone built into the transmitter, and of course you can plug in microphones into those transmitters lets, try a different test and simulate what it would be like if These were down here, lets, say: clipped onto my shirt, so were chatting away the microphones a little bit lower down. My audio is coming out this direction, but the microphones are down here. So yes, microphones are great. We love talking about microphones. How do they sound? Is there much difference between the two? So yes, microphones are great. We love talking about microphones. How do they sound? Is there much difference between the two as youve seen both of these systems – capture, fantastic audio? So in terms of the primary function of these devices, youre going to be very happy with both of them theyre super impressive, both of them dji unquestionably brings some more functionality to the table. That makes a more enjoyable user experience and also a better user experience. I think that one is hard to argue, but it is kind of personal and down to your own individual use case scenario, so do leave your comments below very interested to hear your thoughts and learn from your own experiences.