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If you’re a creator, there’s a good chance you use multiple microphones to record with multiple devices in a wide variety of scenarios. This may mean the cable that came with your microphone doesn’t quite do the job in every scenario you need it to – either it’s not the right length, or the connection type is wrong for your recording device. Thankfully, we offer a range of high-quality cables and adaptors to suit a wide variety of applications.
To help you decide which one is right for you, we’ve put together the ultimate RØDE cable and adaptor guide, so you can get recording in no time.
The RØDE SC17 USB-C to USB-C cable connecting the RØDECaster Pro to a MacBook Pro.
First, it’s important to know a little bit about the different types of cable connections you’ll come across in this list, what they’re used for, and what type of devices they’re commonly found on before diving in any further.
TRS vs TRRS Cables
TRS – The letters TRS stand for Tip-Ring-Sleeve. This refers to the three segments of the cable plug, which different components of the cable are connected to. These are separated by two black bands, which make it easy to identify what kind of cable you have. TRS cables are commonly used with professional audio equipment for carrying audio signals, such as from a microphone, to a device with a stereo input, including cameras, mixers and audio interfaces. They come in a variety of different sizes, the most common being 3.5mm and ¼-inch. 3.5mm TRS cables are included with many RØDE microphones, usually for connecting them to cameras.
TRRS – TRRS stands for Tip-Ring-Ring-Sleeve, referring to the four segments of the cable plug. These are separated by three black bands (remember, two bands = TRS, three bands = TRRS). This extra ring is utilised for a variety of things, depending on the devices the cable is designed to connect. Many smartphones and computers have TRRS inputs for connecting headphones with a built-in microphone (the extra contact point is for carrying the microphone signal). Some RØDE microphones, such as the smartLav+, have a TRRS connector specifically for plugging directly into mobile devices.
Note: if you try and plug a microphone with a TRS connector into a device with a TRRS input, you will generally have issues as the contact points of the connectors won’t properly align.
USB-A vs USB-C vs Lightning
USB-A – You should be familiar with this type of cable. USB-A is one of the most common connections found on virtually every modern computer (and many other devices). It is easy to identify as it is larger than other USB types. You know the one – the classic rectangular USB cable.
USB-C – USB-C is a more versatile connection than USB-A in several ways. It allows for a faster data transfer rate, as well as a higher power link, meaning faster charging and the ability to run more power-hungry devices. USB-C connectors are also smaller than USB-A. They are increasingly utilised in computers and mobile devices, as well as microphones and other audio devices.
Lightning – Utilised exclusively by Apple products, Lightning is an 8-pin connector that carries a digital signal for power or data transfer. If you’ve owned an iPhone over the past 10 years, chances are you’ve come across this cable before to charge your device or connect it to a computer.
(Left to right) RØDE USB-A, Lightning, and USB-C cables.
3.5mm vs XLR vs USB
Most microphones have either a 3.5mm, USB or XLR audio output (or a combination of these) for connecting them to different devices.
3.5mm outputs are generally used for plugging microphones into cameras and compact audio recorders and are commonly found on microphones for filmmakers, like the RØDE VideoMic range and lavaliers.
XLR outputs are used for microphones intended to be plugged into professional audio equipment like mixers and audio interfaces, such as our studio and shotgun microphone range.
As you can see with the different connections listed above, it’s important to pay attention to what type of cable is required for your microphone and recording device. There’s nothing more frustrating than trying to plug in your mic and realising your cable is the wrong kind!
Ok, let’s dive into our wide range of cables for all your connection needs.
The SC1 is a TRRS to TRRS extension cable. At 6-metres long, it is ideal for extending the reach of microphones with a TRRS connector when plugging them into computers or mobile devices for those who need to stand further back from their camera whilst filming.
The SC2 is a 3.5mm TRS to TRS patch cable used for connecting microphones or wireless receivers to cameras. The coiled cable means that the SC2 can easily extend from 170mm to up to 400mm.
RØDE SC2 TRS to TRS cable used to plug a VideoMicro into a camera.
The SC3 is a TRRS to TRS adaptor, designed to allow microphones with a TRRS connector (such as the RØDE smartLav+) to be connected to devices with a 3.5mm TRS input, such as cameras and audio recorders.
The SC4 is a TRS to TRRS adaptor, designed to allow microphones with a 3.5mm TRS output to connect to devices with a TRRS input. This is ideal if you want to connect a RØDE VideoMic, lavalier or Wireless GO to a computer, smartphone or tablet.
The SC5 is a TRS to TRS cable that comes with the Wireless GO II (not sold separately) for connecting it to cameras and other devices with a TRS input. It features a memory wire cable rather than a coiled cable like the SC2, making it easy to route around a camera.
A RØDE SC5 connecting the Wireless GO II to a camera.
The SC7 is a TRS to TRRS patch cable, designed to allow microphones with a 3.5mm TRS output, such a RØDE VideoMic or Wireless GO, to connect to devices with a TRRS input like a computer or mobile device.
The SC8 is a 6-metre TRS to TRS cable that is ideal for connecting microphones with a 3.5mm TRS output to cameras and audio recorders at a distance.
A RØDE SC10 connecting a VideoMic NTG to a camera.
The SC11 is a TRS splitter cable for connecting two mono outputs to a single stereo input. It is particularly suitable for connecting two microphones to a camera, for example, dual Wireless GO receivers, or a Wireless GO and a VideoMic.
The SC15 is a Lightning Accessory Cable (USB-C to Lightning) designed to connect MFi-certified USB-C microphones to iOS devices. It is particularly suitable for connecting the VideoMic NTG to iPhones or iPads with a Lightning input.
The SC16 is a 300mm-long USB-C to USB-C cable designed to connect RØDE microphones with a USB-C output to USB-C compatible devices.
The SC17 is a 1.5m-long USB-C to USB-C cable designed to connect RØDE microphones with a USB-C output to USB-C compatible devices. The SC17 is also Hi-Speed certified, making it ideal for connecting the NT-USB Mini or RØDECaster Pro to devices with a USB-C input, such as computers and tablets.
A RØDE SC17 cable connecting a RØDECaster Pro to a computer.
The SC18 is a USB-C to USB-A cable. At 1.5-metres long, it’s ideal for connecting USB-C devices such as the NT-USB Mini or RØDECaster Pro to devices with a USB-A input.
The SC19 is a 1.5m-long Lightning Accessory Cable (USB-C to Lightning) designed to connect MFi-certified USB-C microphones to iOS devices.
The SC20 is a USB-C to USB-A cable used for connecting the Wireless GO II to a USB-A device. It is shorter than the 1.5m-long SC18 and is only included with the Wireless GO II (not sold separately).
The VC1 is a 3m-long stereo audio extension cable used to increase the range of any microphone or pair of headphones with a 3.5mm output.
The VXLR is a 3.5mm TRS minijack to XLR adaptor for converting any unpowered microphones with a 3.5mm TRS output, such as the Wireless GO range, to devices with an XLR input such as mixers, mic preamps, field recorders and audio interfaces.
The VXLR+ is a 3.5mm TRS minijack to XLR adaptor that also converts 12-48V phantom power to 4V plug-in power, making it perfect for use with 3.5mm microphones that require plug-in power, such as the VideoMicro, VideoMic GO and lavalier microphones.
The VXLR Pro is a 3.5mm minijack TRS to XLR adaptor that converts 12-48V phantom power to 4V plug-in power, and also features an internal transformer used to convert an unbalanced signal to a balanced signal. This makes it ideal for using on-camera shotgun microphones like the VideoMic NTG on a boom pole where longer cable runs are required.
Check out RØDE's entire range of cables here.