In this long-awaited RODE Lavalier Go review, you'll learn all about this handy and portable piece of recording kit. We'll talk sound quality, pricing, ideal recording setups, and why you might want one. First up, though…
What Is a Lavalier Mic?
We've written a lot about lavalier mics in the past. Also known as lapel or ‘lav' mics, these handy little devices pin on to your shirt or jacket. Their discreet and unobtrusive nature makes them popular choices in the world of TV and video. But they're also extremely useful for podcasters, too.
Though it's been challenging to achieve throughout much of 2020, you can't top the face-to-face interview for recording engaging and compelling conversations. This can be improved even more by using lav mics. When you're not waving a mic in someone's face, they're more likely to open up, as well as sound relaxed and natural.
On top of that, lavalier mics are extremely portable. They'll take up less room in your pocket than a set of earbuds. These are a couple of the most common reasons many podcasters swear by them.
Our Recommended Lavalier Mics
Lav mics are a funny thing, because there's loads of budget models out there, and no shortage of bank-breaking options too. But when we look at the options in the “affordable but quality” bracket, there isn't a huge amount of choice.
Over the past few years, we've recommended the ATR3350 as our lav mic of choice. Recently, however, this model was discontinued, and it's going to become harder to pick one up in the near future.
Fortunately, RODE released the Lavalier Go in mid-2019, and it looks like a promising alternative. We're big fans of RODE gear, and the price point seems ideal to us too.
The RODE Lavalier Go
When looking at any lavalier mic, there isn't much to say about it other than “it's a length of cable with a tiny mic attached to it”. Most lav mics look very similar – a far cry from the wacky world of USB mic designs.
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So it's down to price point and sound quality alone (just as it should be, some might say!) to judge whether or not this is the mic for you. Let's cover these two factors first.
Here is an unprocessed sound sample. It was recorded with the RODE Lavalier Go running into the Zoom H6.
Cost of the RODE Lavalier Go
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At the time of writing, you'll find the RODE Lavalier Go available brand new on Amazon UK for £57. It's around $120 on Amazon.com.
Additional Considerations | RODE Lavalier Go Review
I've mentioned already that there's not much to judge a lav mic on, other than price and sound quality. There are a couple of other factors to take into consideration, though.
Firstly, cables are important parts of a lav mic's design. RODE's own description of the RLG's cable is “a hard-wearing 1.2m (4 ft) long Kevlar reinforced cable”. The length is certainly ideal, and you never feel burdened by an unnecessary birds nest of cabling at your feet whilst using the Lavalier Go.
The clothing clip also seems to be robust and durable, too. It's a simple thing, but I've seen these break on cheaper lavs before and that quickly becomes a massive annoyance.
How Do You Use the RODE Lavalier Go?
As the sound sample suggests, you need to plug the RODE Lavalier Go into a recorder. This could be anything from a portable digital recorder, to your computer. The latter isn't ideal – if you're planning to do a lot of recording at your computer, opt for a USB mic instead.
Lav mics are at their best on the road, and on-the-go. Typically, we'll use them in conjunction with the Zoom H1, Zoom H5, or H6. If you're recording interviews or conversations you'll need a lav mic for each participant.
You can also drastically increase your flexibility of movement by using the mic with its cousin, the RODE Wireless Go. See our full review, linked to there, for the lowdown on how it all works.
RODE Lavalier Go Review: Summary
RODE's release of this lav mic has been timely, as our much-recommended ATR3350 has been discontinued.
The RODE Lavalier Go ticks every box for me, in terms of price, build, and sound quality. But, do you need one?
But if you're keen to put together a portable interview kit to record conversations anywhere and everywhere, then the RODE Lavalier Go is ideal. Use it with a digital recorder like the Zoom H1, Zoom H5, or H6. And if you're feeling particularly flush, consider pairing it up with the RODE Wireless Go.
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