Rode Wireless Go for the Fujifilm X-T4
One of the things I learned very quickly when using video is the need for clear audio. It doesn't matter how good the video looks, if the audio is poor, then the video is not going to be well received.
Over the years I have invested in good, portable microphones even invested in a radio mic system. This worked really well but when working in a motorsport environment, a broad range of radio frequencies are used for various uses and radio microphone frequencies are strictly controlled. in some countries you also need to buy a licence, which can cost hundreds of pounds, so I quickly reverted back to wired microphones.
This brought its own problems as when interviewing drivers the surrounding environment can be noisy, so you need to get the microphone as close as possible. Of course, the extra added complication in the last few months means the interviewer has to stand at least 1.5 metres, which means wires trailing across the floor, which isn't good.
In March I spotted that Rode had launched the Wireless Go, which was a WiFi microphone and transmitter working on the 2.4G internet wavelength. This means I didn't have to worry about radio licences and at the same time I got rid of the trailing wires. So I bought the Wireless Go and added the Interview Go, which transforms the transmitter in a wireless handheld microphone.
The transmitter features a built in microphone which can be fitted with a 'dead kitten' windshield and can be clipped onto the jacket or shirt. It also feature a mic socket so you can use a lavalier microphone and attach the transmitter to the interviewees belt or pocket. Another alternative is to put the transmitter on an extension pole fitted to a standard shotgun mic to give you a remote extension microphone for conducting an interview at a distance.
The transmitter features two LEDs, one to show it is on and the other to tell you it is linked to the receiver.
The receiver fits into a hotshoe on the camera or, as I have it, in the cold shoe on the Smallrig cage. The receiver has a small LCD which shows the sound level, the battery level for both receiver and transmitter and a small indicator to show what the input level you have set. This is set using the button on the side and it has three levels. I usually keep it set on level 2 and it has worked extremely well so far.
The internal batteries last 5 to 6 hours on full charge and can be recharged using an external powerpack via the USB-C leads included.
The maximum distance between the transmitter and receiver is supposed to be 70 metres line of sight but so far the maximum distance I have tried this is probably 3 metres and the sound is crystal clear.
The first test for the Rode Wireless Go was at the first round of the European Le Mans Series, with a series of interviews with drivers in and around the paddock. I used the transmitter with the Interview Go microphone set up and had a second microphone, a Rode Microphone Pro R for the interviewer. I use a splitter on the audio input to the camera so the two microphones are on the two channels into the camera, I then put them together in post production.
The quality of the sound from the Rode Wireless Go is perfect and in the three events I have used it so I have not had any break up or distortion on the audio.
I also used the Wireless Go on the GoPro Hero 8 I have fitted with the Media Mod. This has a 3.5mm audio socket and the receiver fits into one of the cold shoes on the outside of the Media Mod. For the interviews I did in Le Castellet I gave the driver the Interview Go set up and filmed them on the GoPro set to Linear. This is the perfect lightweight interview set up for in and around the racing paddock.
I have completed a couple of Zoom interviews during lockdown, one for Fujifilm South Africa and one Zoom photographic club presentation. For this I used the Wireless Go with the Rode lavalier microphone to provide the audio. I also used this set up for the media safety briefings I produced for each event.
All in all I am extremely pleased with the Rode Wireless Go, it is lightweight, flexible, completely portable and, most importantly, provides clear audio for the videos I am producing. I am probably going to buy a second set so I can interview two drivers at the same time without swapping microphones. At a RRP of £185, though they are cheaper if you shop around, these are extremely good value for money.
Jeff Carter is a Haida Filters Co-Photographer - CLICK HERE to see his profile