I’m always yapping about MXL mics as being the ubiquitous budget studio microphone, but they are not alone in that space. RØDE has been a major player the studio microphone game since the 1990s. The NT-2 has been a very popular microphone in studios of all sizes and classes. But I’ve never owned or worked on one… until now
A customer contacted me about upgrading his NT-2. According to a little research on recording-hacks.com, the mic is really a pretty decent unit as-is. They do a good quality Schoeps style circuit. The downfall of the mic (as is with many chinese mics) is that they use a bright k67 style capsule on that Schoeps circuit. The thing is insanely bright! As my customer put it “There’s no de-esser on the planet that can handle the amount of sibilance it pumps out!”. Upon getting the mic in my hands and listening – he’s right. It is, in my opinion, an unusably bright mic.
I don’t normally do capsule-only upgrades, but for the RØDE NT-2, that’s about all that makes sense. The stock Schoeps style circuit is already using good quality, all discrete components (including WIMA caps). The circuit is split into two boards with the DC-DC convertor for the capsule power on a separate board. My jaSb circuit fits it all on one board (by sticking a few of the big caps on the back side). Besides that, the NT-2 has that fancy switch boards for pattern, and filter/pad which is quite cool.
With a K-47 style center-terminated capsule, this mic gets a softer, less harsh top end and retains a nice full low and low-mid response. The extra switches give this mic more range and ability and you don’t even have to open the body to get to them!