RØDE continues to innovate in different areas of audio production hardware and software. After its RØDELink, Wireless GO and Wireless GO II, RØDE has just released the new U$149 Wireless ME, with even more improvements and features (and 1 removed). Simultaneously, RØDE has also released a new iOS app (RØDE Capture) which controls its wireless audio while it records video and sound (to be reviewed later, separately). Ahead, I’ll play our first test recording with the Wireless Me and describe its features, specs benefits and differences between it and the Wireless Go II.
Key features of the Wireless ME
- Ultra-compact and easy-to-use wireless microphone system
- RØDE’s state-of-the-art Series IV 2.4 GHz digital transmission for crystal-clear recording with over 100m range
- Intelligent GainAssist technology automatically controls audio levels for perfectly clear sound in any application
- Broadcast-grade microphones built into both the transmitter and receiver for versatile dual-channel recording
- Ability to connect an additional transmitter for capturing three microphones simultaneously
- Connects seamlessly to audio recorders, cameras, smartphones and tablets (Android and iOS) and computers (Mac and Windows) with all required cables included
- Easy control over settings via the free RØDE Central app; compatible with the free RØDE Connect mixer/recorder app, the free RØDE Reporter recording app and the new RØDE Capture app for audio and video
- Designed and made in RØDE’s precision facilities in Sydney, Australia
Ease of use
The Wireless ME makes capturing professional wireless audio easier than ever. Building on the same form factor as the previous Wireless GO generations with new features that make it even more user-friendly. The Wireless ME consists of a single transmitter and receiver, which are paired out of the box for getting set up in seconds. (I proved that to be the case.) It utilizes RØDE’s state-of-the-art Series IV 2.4GHz digital transmission and proprietary near-zero latency codec with 128-bit encryption to deliver crystal-clear, incredibly stable audio with best-in-class range. Like its siblings, it features a broadcast-quality microphone built into the transmitter, so there’s no extra equipment required to start recording.
Built-in microphone in the receiver
In another world first, the Wireless ME also features a “narrator” microphone built into the receiver unit. Called affectionately the ME Mic, this innovative feature allows creators to record audio from in front of and behind the camera simultaneously, making it ideal for capturing two-track interviews from up to three different mic sources. Asecond Wireless ME or Wireless GO II transmitter can also be paired (connected) to the receiver.
Designed to be as easy to use as possible, the Wireless ME is optimized to deliver professional sound quality with minimal setup required. It features RØDE’s GainAssist technology, which utilizes intelligent algorithms that automatically control the audio level on-the-fly to ensure it is perfectly balanced and doesn’t clip or distort. This technology is significantly more advanced than standard automatic gain control features found on cameras and other audio devices, delivering incredibly clean audio with no level pumping or background noise elevation. There are two modes available, Auto and Dynamic, allowing users to choose the perfect setting for their recording scenario. The output gain can also be adjusted to perfectly match the recording device. These features and other configuration options are accessible via the RØDE companion app for desktop and mobile, RØDE Central.
The Wireless ME works seamlessly with audio recorders, cameras, Android and iOS smartphones, and Mac and Windows computers, and comes with all the cables required for recording with compatible devices. However, if your audio recorder or camcorder only has XLR inputs, then you might need to add the VXLR, VXLR Plus or VXLR Pro converter to adapt the 3.5 mm plug to an XLR plug.
RØDE Capture app for iOS
In addition to the release of the Wireless ME, RØDE has also launched a free iOS audio/video app, RØDE Capture, which I will cover in detail a separate review article.
RØDE Capture offers direct in-app control of compatible RØDE products, including the Wireless ME, Wireless GO II, VideoMic GO II, and more. This includes turning features on and off, activating digital signal processing, adjusting audio levels, and advanced configuration. According to RØDE, no other video app offers direct control of these type of features in an external microphone. As far as I know, this is true.
RØDE Capture offers control over aspect ratio, spatial video resolution, framerate (much more about that in my upcoming RØDE Capture review) and zoom. It also features Dual Cam modes for recording with the front and selfie cameras simultaneously, either in split screen or picture-in-picture mode – for interviews where the user needs to capture video from the interviewer and interviewee at the same time. This feature integrates seamlessly with the Wireless ME’s in-built transmitter and receiver microphones, allowing creators to record high-quality both video and audio from both in front of and behind the camera. In my review, I’ll compare RØDE Capture Dual Cam with DoubleTake from FiLMiC.
What’s missing in the Wireless ME compared with the Wireless Go II?
Even though the Wireless ME has features not in the Wireless Go II, the Wireless Go II has a built-in audio recorder in each transmitter. To my knowledge (and per the published specs), there is no audio recorder built into the the Wireless ME. That explains the huge difference in price.
Test recording of the Wireless ME
I want to thank Memo Sauceda for helping with this test recording. We expected to be able to use the new RØDE Capture app, which Is why I recruited him, since Memo currently uses iPhone and currently don’t, since I use a Google Pixel 7 with a special alternate Android version. However, the following test recordings were made with the RØDE Wireless ME and the standard Apple Camera app. We were unable to use the RØDE Capture app due to a delay in its availability for this review to be published at launch of the Wireless ME. We were unable to use FiLMiC Pro since the RØDE Wireless Me did not appear as an option among the mic sources within the version of FiLMIC Pro which Memo has installed. That’s why we had to use the Apple App.
SPLIT AUDIO VERSION:
Above is the split audio version. No filtering has been applied. Only trimming and loudness normalization has been applied to each audio track. It will sound like fake stereo, with my voice on one track and Memo’s voice on another.
CENTERED, MONO VERSION
Above is the centered mono version, where both normalized tracks are combined in the center.
Ratings for the Wireless Me hardware
Ease of implementation and operation
Wireless RF Clarity
GainAssist usability and end result
As long as you don’t require an inboard audio recorder in each transmitter, for about half the price of the RØDE Wireless Go II, the U$149 RØDE Wireless ME offers the same audio quality with many unique new improvements and features. Those include GainAssist for facilitating proper audio levels without pumping, option of split recording, which is also available with the RØDE Wireless Go II (ideal when post production is feasible) or combined audio from the two microphones for truly live or live-to-drive production, when post production is not feasible. With the addition of the new RØDE Capture app (which I’ll review soon), even more of the RØDE Wireless ME capabilities will be unleashed, including direct control of the hardware and Dual Cam mode.
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RØDE is not paying for this review. RØDE sent a review unit before launch to facilitate this review at launch time.. Some of the manufacturers listed above have contracted Tépper and/or TecnoTur LLC to carry out consulting and/or translations/localizations/transcreations. So far, none of the manufacturers listed above is/are sponsors of the TecnoTur, BeyondPodcasting, CapicúaFM or TuSaludSecreta programs, although they are welcome to do so, and some are, may be (or may have been) sponsors of ProVideo Coalition magazine. Some links to third parties listed in this article and/or on this web page may indirectly benefit TecnoTur LLC via affiliate programs. Allan Tépper’s opinions are his own. Allan Tépper is not liable for misuse or misunderstanding of information he shares.
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