Originally launched in 2019, the RODECaster Pro was a groundbreaking addition to the podcasting space, combining the features of several devices into a single unit. In 2022, RODE has released an updated model. Let’s take a look at some of the key differences in the RODECaster Pro 2 vs the original RODECaster Pro.
One of the neat things about the RODECaster Pro was its ability to receive upgraded firmware, allowing RODE to continuously improve and add features to the device post-launch. This is a double-edged sword: while ongoing bug-fixes and improvements are nice, some people felt that the unit wasn’t quite ready for launch at first.
A number of similar podcast-centric devices soon followed, like Zoom’s Podtrak models and the Tascam Mixcast 4. Since firmware updates can only take a device so far, RODE got their RODECaster Pro 2 to market just a few years after the original model was released.
Presently, both models are still for sale, with the new RODECaster Pro 2 being about $200 more than the original RODECaster Pro is selling for.
Let’s take a look at some of the key differences in the RODECaster Pro 2 vs the original RODECaster Pro. First, you might also be interested in checking out this article to understand whether you really need one of these all-in-one podcast production devices at all.
Differences: RODECaster Pro 2 vs the Original RODECaster Pro
Both units have 4 microphone inputs, but the newer model has combo XLR/TRS jacks. This allows the connection of 1/4″ devices, such as musical instruments, without needing adapters.
Both units feature Bluetooth capability for connecting a phone. The original RODECaster Pro featured a TRRS mini jack, which was useful for recording calls. However, it is not present on the newer model.
RODE’s website says:
“Instead of a TRRS input, the RODECaster Pro II comes equipped with dual USB-C interfaces for connecting mobile devices…”
“The RODECaster Pro II comes equipped with multiple digital inputs (wireless and wired) for connecting a smartphone in a number of different ways. For a wireless connection, pair to the RODECaster Pro II via Bluetooth and assign your Bluetooth input to a channel. For a wired connection, you’ll need to connect via a USB-C cable to the USB 2 input on the back of the RODECaster Pro II and assign your USB 2 input to its own channel. To connect an iOS device, you will need to use the RODE SC15 or SC19.”
Some users found the original RODECaster Pro’s preamps did not have enough gain to cleanly support some microphones, like Shure’s SM7B. This left them needing to use external devices like the Cloudlifter.
RODE says that when comparing the RODECaster Pro 2 vs the original RODECaster Pro, the preamps in the new model have been improved. There’s no longer a need for external devices.
By removing 2 faders, the RODECaster Pro 2 is a couple inches smaller than the original model. This was mainly accomplished by removing some physical faders, with the new version having 6 instead of 8. The unit does have 3 virtual faders as well.
The original RODECaster Pro had 8 pads for trigger sound effects, theme music, etc. On the RODECaster Pro 2, these have been reimagined and are now called SMART Pads. No longer are they just for triggering sounds, but can also activate voice effects, send midi commands, automate levels, and more.
Improved Voice Processing
The RODECaster Pro 2 features new and improved APHEX audio processing and on-board effects, with more granular control. There are even some funny voice presets should you want them!
The Verdict on the RODECaster Pro 2 vs the Original RODECaster Pro
The RODECaster Pro 2 is a feature-packed device designed for more than just podcasters. While some initial reports claimed the unit needed work, this was the case with the former model as well. It’s certainly expected that RODE will make improvements over time with firmware updates.
With the RODECaster Pro 2 currently selling for $200 more than the original model, which is still available for sale. It will all come down to your individual situation to determine whether or not the extra expense is worth it.
When shopping, keep in mind to explore other devices like Zoom’s Podtrak 8 and the Tascam Mixcast 4.