A microphone is an integral part of your setup, and while expensive options are fantastic, affordable solutions like TZ Stellar X2 Vs Rode NT1 are also promising. These microphones not only sound clean and clear but give your recording a boost of confidence. They are perfect for varying applications and built like a tank. If you wonder which mic to go for, let’s see below what they can offer.
In this comparison, we are going to talk about:
- Which Microphone to Buy
- What are TZ Stellar X2 and Rode NT1
- How is the Build Quality of TZ Stellar X2 and Rode NT1
- How is the Setup of TZ Stellar X2 and Rode NT1
- How are the Specs of TZ Stellar X2 and Rode NT1
- How are the Sound Characters of TZ Stellar X2 and Rode NT1
- How is the Performance of TZ Stellar X2 and Rode NT1
- TZ Stellar X2 Vs Rode NT1
Buying a Microphone
When it comes to the microphone, you want a unit that works well and sounds good. What’s suitable for people’s ears may vary, especially for human voices, so different vocalists or singers may prefer different microphones. There is never a single answer, and one microphone fits all, depending on the application and your preference. However, there are some tips of methods to find your ideal option based on the purpose of the mic itself.
First, we need to decide the microphone’s purpose. In general, the best choice is the one you can use with less fuss and produce the quality you want. If possible, look for a microphone that lets you record without a complicated setup or plug-and-play. Second, we should understand frequency response. Large-diaphragm microphones can capture low-frequency sounds like deep male voices and bass guitars. Small diaphragms tend to capture the highs, such as female vocals and acoustic guitars or cymbals.
Third, decide the directionality of your microphone or also known as a polar pattern. For an application like voiceovers, choose the more focused directionality such as cardioid and hypercardioid. These polar patterns are best to avoid picking ambient noise in the room and are ideal for picking up sound close to the mic. Fourth, invest in a shock mount because this equipment will help isolate the mic from stand vibrations such as when people are walking in the same room or any vibrations that may be present nearby.
|TZ Stellar X2||Rode NT1|
|Product Dimensions||11.26 x 9.69 x 4.84 inches ||15 x 5 x 11 inches|
|Shipping Weight||12.2 ounces||15.5 ounces|
|Shop now at Amazon||click here||click here|
About TZ Stellar X2 and Rode NT1
We also think trying the microphone with your voice is helpful, especially if you have access to varying options. After all, we have different voices, and different microphones may affect the recording. There are so many good microphones out there, and you can see what options are more popular for specific applications such as singing, podcasting, miking instruments, etc. High chance they will have the quality required for the particular purpose.
If you are here, then we assume that the mic you want is for recording human voice, whether it is singing or speech like voiceovers and broadcasting. There are many broadcasting microphones with plug-and-play operations, and they are usually straightforward to use. But, if you want something that can capture more from your voice, the TZ Stellar X2 and Rode NT1 are two famous options. These microphones are almost like twins, but they are not identical with some noticeable differences.
The main difference between TZ Stellar X2 and Rode NT1 is the sound character itself because the Stellar has a stronger texture that makes it better or worse, depending on your natural voice and preference. Many people compare Stellar with the high-end TLM103, but we think they are not the same. The latter is expensive, and the overall quality is much smoother than Stellar X2. But, for the price point, both Stellar X2 and NT1 are close.
The TZ Stellar X2 and Rode NT1 are pretty straightforward microphones suitable for varying applications. Many seem to use these mics for podcasting and singing and recording acoustic guitars like cover songs. According to our ears, the overall sound of NT1 is flatter, and we recommend this mic if you have a high-pitched voice or dislike it in the recording. Read also: Lewitt LCT 440 Pure Vs AKG C214 here.
TZ Stellar X2 and Rode NT1 Build Quality
Before checking what the TZ Stellar X2 and Rode NT1 can offer, let’s look at the unit. The build quality may affect the sound they capture, but it is always better to get something durable for prolonged use. The microphones use all-metal construction, including a metal grille. The grille looks pretty sturdy as you press it, but there may be a little gift. The NT1 and Stellar X2 come in a standard box, but Stellar gives you an excellent hard carrying case.
The carrying case featured foam inside to store the microphone and its accessories safely. The other accessories are a plastic shock mount with a microphone stand adapter, foam filter, and a small pouch for the X2. On the other hand, while Rode didn’t give the mic a carrying case, it still provides a plastic shock mount with a pop filter. The pop filter is handy to help you achieve a cleaner recording, and the kit also comes with an XLR to XLR cable.
TZ Stellar X2 and Rode NT1 Setup
Because the TZ Stellar X2 and Rode NT1 are condenser microphones, you will need to hook them to a phantom power source. The most convenient will be an audio interface such as Scarlett 2i2 with the 48V on if you are working on a computer. You can also use a mixer that supplies the proper power requirement to ensure they can work properly. Condenser microphones usually don’t need much gain to be audible, but we find them sufficient, around 45% depending on your equipment.
TZ Stellar X2 and Rode NT1 Specs
Next, let’s take a look at the basic specs of TZ Stellar X2 and Rode NT1 because it will be helpful to let you decide on the option. The two are condenser microphones with a phantom power requirement of P24 or P48 for Rode and 48V for TZ. The frequency response is from 20Hz to 20kHz for both microphones. The impedance of Stellar is 140 ohms, and its maximum SPL is 130dB, while self-noise is at 13dBA. The NT1’s impedance is 100 ohms, the maximum SPL is 132db, and the self-noise is 4dBA.
TZ Stellar X2 and Rode NT1 Sound Character
Now is for the main part or sound character. The sound quality of TZ Stellar X2 and Rode NT1 are excellent as they are clean and clear. We don’t have any issues understanding the speech, and they are also easy to the ears. But, we notice that the Stellar X2 can get uncomfortable on high frequency for some people, especially those with high-pitched voices. The frequency response is boosted here, probably to improve clarity and brightness when you sing with it.
On the other hand, the NT1 sounds flatter to our ears. It is also boosted on the high frequency, but it doesn’t get sharp or uncomfortable. For deep male voices or those whose voice is more dominant on the low register, the TZ Stellar X2 and Rode NT1 should sound more controlled. The two add a slight presence, but it is nothing compared to those microphones specifically marketed for singing. Overall the two have an open and pleasant character for singing, but Stellar can sound a bit harsh on the top.
Besides vocals, the TZ Stellar X2 and Rode NT1 are also ideal for guitars. The Stellar X2 sounds brighter than NT1 for acoustic, and depending on your preference, we think this TZ’s mic is suitable for this application. We find it a bit thin or lacking in the body compared to NT1, but other instruments may fill this area in the mix.
TZ Stellar X2 and Rode NT1 Performance
As for the overall performance, we don’t have any issues with TZ Stellar X2 and Rode NT1. The shock mounts they provide are working well in securing the unit and eliminating noise. The microphones are also quiet and work with any interface as long as you have the phantom power requirement. The issues are usually plosives, so you need the pop filter from NT1 or buy it separately for Stellar. With the pop filter, both mics will sound better and cleaner.
Like most microphones with a cardioid polar pattern, the two reject sound from the side and rear. The voice coming from both sides of the capsule will be more noticeable, and the character is not far different from how they are from the front. The sound from the rear will come off as distant and dampened, but overall both are good at rejecting the off-axis sound source.
TZ Stellar X2 Vs Rode NT1
The TZ Stellar X2 and Rode NT1 are some of the best large-diaphragm condenser microphones in the price range. They sound similar, with a noticeable difference in the high-frequency response. The Stellar X2 is boosted on a high frequency which makes your voice brighter but also sharper to the ears and may increase sibilants. The NT1 is flatter and has a more natural microphone as it is neither boomy nor bright. It does have an elevated treble, but it doesn’t sound as bright or sharp as Stellar X2.
The build quality of these microphones is equally impressive. The two come with a kit, but Stellar X2 gives more at a lower price. TZ provides a hard carrying case that is very useful if you transport the kit.
Both TZ Stellar X2 and Rode NT1 are good options, but we recommend getting the Rode NT1 if you dislike the highs of your voice or prefer a safer choice because NT1 is the flatter and more neutral sounding microphone that will fit more people. It is also not far different than Stellar in price point.