In this article, we’ll walk through how to get your Rode PodMic fully set up and ready for recording.
Quick Answer: The Rode PodMic is packaged without any accessories. You’ll need a few other pieces of equipment to get going, including a mic stand, audio interface and mixer. With these, it’s very simple to connect the units and begin recording high-quality audio.
In order to get set up, we’ll go through a few of the must-haves and options.
Mic Stand & Boom Arm
First things first, you’ll need a way to mount the mic. One option is to screw the Rode PodMic onto a table mic stand. They’re sleek and minimal, and work great for a boardroom style podcast with 2 or 3 people.
The next step up would be an articulating boom arm. The Rode PSA1+ is our favorite for its sturdy handling of the 2lb-heavy Rode PodMic. Being made by the same company, the PSA1+ is designed with the PodMic in mind.
This particular boom arm provides maximum flexibility when it comes to how you’d like to position your mic. It’ll stay in place no matter how you orient it; no drifting or leaning out of place.
With your mic supported, let’s go on to how to get the audio feed to your computer.
Audio Interfaces & Mixers
An audio interface will convert the analog signal produced by your microphone into a digital signal for your computer. Plugging the mic directly to your computer won’t be possible, and you’ll need the interface to process the signal correctly.
Dynamic microphones like the Rode PodMic often need an inline preamp to boost the signal that extra bit, but audio interfaces have these built in. Interfaces that feature mute buttons will also prove handy should you need to cough, sneeze or talk off-air for a moment.
Group Podcast: Rode Rodecaster Pro II & Rode PodMic
If you’re running a podcast of up to 4 people, look no further than this setup. It’s the easiest and most efficient solution for a group podcast, with everything you need housed within one unit: the Rode Rodecaster II. It has the capability to monitor and record 4 microphones. You can even record the audio straight to an SD card.
All things considered, this podcasting powerhouse is the most affordable and the best in its class.
Streaming: Elgato Wave XLR & Rode PodMic
Live streamers are best suited to using Elgato’s dedicated suite. All of their tools, from their preamps to their mixers and even lighting, are completely integrated. Simply put: it’s built for streamers.
As an affordable yet high value range, Elgato is the ideal one stop shop for a synchronized eco-system that’s clean and connected. They can handle power-hungry microphones and headphones and are all neatly designed.
That seamlessness lets you focus on the stream whilst your equipment works as a team and handles the rest.
Best Value: Focusrite Vocaster One & Rode PodMic
Focusrite can proudly claim to have produced the best selling audio interface of all time. That led to an even more developed preamp and functionality as the Vocaster One.
It’s a simple and sleek interface, featuring one mic in and headphone out. Pairing this highly-practice interface with the Rode Podic will get you the best bang for your buck.
An XLR cable is what you’ll need to connect your microphone to the audio interface. An XLR cable with a black connector – instead of silver – will look far less noticeable in your video. Beyond appearance, the star quad cable is the superior choice for audio quality. These premium cables reduce magnetic interference and send a cleaner signal than your standard XLR.
Our top-tier recommendation goes to the Mogami studio gold. Alternatively, the canary star quad is solid for daily use, which is available in a variety of colors, making it useful for keeping track of the different connections.
When it comes to length, a 6ft cable is unlikely to cover the distance you need. A 10 ft cable on the other hand will usually span the length of your set up quite comfortably.
With that, you can connect the XLR cable to your Rode PodMic and run it tidily to your audio interface.
To accurately set up the leveling on your microphone, you’ll first need to consider its positioning.
Dynamics mics, such as the Rode PodMic, should be about a fist away from your face. We recommend positioning it below the chin, pointing upwards. Talking in immediate proximity can create unpleasant pops around plosive words. You’ll also spare the listener from hearing your every breath.
Whilst Rode claims their PodMic has an internal pop filter, the results can be mixed. So, we recommend layering the mic with an external pop filter. You can find our favorite picks in the list below.
The maximum level your microphone audio can reach is 0db.
If your audio peaks to that level, expect clipping and distortion. A 12db safety margin will protect against spikes in volume such as laughs and excited spurts. You can maintain that buffer by recording at around -12db to -18db.
If you need to boost your audio later, that’s no problem. What you can’t do is fix it as a distorted signal if your gain was too high when you recorded it.
Post Processing & Mixing
When processing your audio recording, you’ll want to consider the context of the media.
If the only audio feed is your voice, you’ll be free to play with the settings in any way that gets it sounding how you want. You could go for the super-compressed, big bass setting for the authoritative AM radio feel, for example.
Live streamers will need to inject a little more thought into their final product. The nature of their recordings often means there’ll be more than just a single voice being broadcasted. They might be critiquing other content or playing games. In these instances, you’ll want to boost the frequencies that add to the clarity of your voice amongst the competing sounds.
Moreover, a standalone microphone setting might not be favorable with your voice. But that same setting might be a great fit for things like reaction videos, or some types of livestreams. Think about the purpose of your recording and don’t discount a setting before trying it out.
The best example of signals being coordinated is in concerts. Each instrument is heavily filtered, with their frequency ranges grooved into each other to minimize clashes. That means audiences can experience a clean sound from each instrument of the concert.
This mental approach to mixing your own audio will help your own audience experience your production in the best possible way.
Rode PodMic Setup
There are a handful of presets on the Focusrite Vocaster that can begin to characterize your mix: clean, warm, bright and radio.
Clean – The clean setting will lift your vocals from the listener’s subwoofer and provide an easier listen during car rides.
Warm – The warm setting brings a smooth alternative with a wider frequency range. But it’s worth noting that with this setting, the low end could well interfere with other audio feeds like sound effects in games. Conflicting signals at the low end can produce muddy results.
Bright – The bright setting is thin and pinchy at the higher end. It couldn’t be further from a well-rounded option, but it will cut through the mix. If you want your words to be heard above all else, the bright setting is very effective. There’ll be no mud or needed effort on the listeners part to hear what you’re saying.
Radio – The radio setting compresses your audio and boosts the low end. If you wish your voice to possess the strength and authority typical of broadcast professionals, this is the setting for you.
And that’s the full guide to properly setting up your Rode PodMic.
For a recap of the key takeaways, we recommend partnering the PodMic with the following add-ons:
- External pop-filter
- Isolating Boom Arm
- Audio interface
- High-quality XLR cable
Pricing for Rode Podmic & Equipment
- Rode PodMic: https://currentprice.io/rode_podmic
- Mic Stand: https://currentprice.io/desk_stand
- Rode PSA1 Plus Boom Arm: https://currentprice.io/psa1_plus
- PodMic Foam Windscreen: https://currentprice.io/podmic_foam
- Mogami Gold XLR Cable: https://currentprice.io/mogami_xlr
- Canare Star Quad XLR Cable: https://currentprice.io/canare_xlr
- Beyerdynamic DT990 Pro Headphones: https://currentprice.io/beyer_dt_990
- Rode Rodecaster II Audio Mixer: https://currentprice.io/rodecaster2
- Elgato Wave XLR Audio Interface: https://currentprice.io/wave_xlr
- Focusrite Vocaster One Audio Interface: https://currentprice.io/vocaster_one
- Focusrite Vocaster Two Audio Interface: https://currentprice.io/vocaster_two
How to Set Up Rode PodMic Topics
- 0:00 – Introduction
- 0:25 – Video Setup
- 0:40 – Pricing & Specs
- 1:00 – Rode PodMic
- 1:18 – Mic Stand & Boom Arm
- 2:50 – Audio Interfaces & Mixers
- 5:11 – Group Podcast: Rode Rodecaster II & Rode PodMic
- 6:00 – Streaming: Elgato Wave XLR & Rode PodMic
- 6:38 – Best Value: Focusrite Vocaster One & Rode PodMic
- 6:54 – XLR Cable
- 9:16 – PodMic Position
- 9:59 – Foam Windscreen
- 10:23 – Gain Setup
- 12:12 – Post Processing & Mixing
- 16:12 – Rode PodMic Setup
- 16:50 – Final Thoughts