The Sony a6500 a very popular mirrorless camera from the Sony Alpha range that is one of the most popular mirrorless cameras ranges in the world by far. The a6500 has an absolutely massive customer base made up of photographers, videographers, vloggers, streamers, and social media influences with no signs of its growth slowing down anytime soon. Due to having such a large user base from so many different niches, we always see people reading out with various questions on different camera accessories for the a6500 to help improve the performance of the camera.
Although both the image quality and audio quality is solid on the Sony a6500, as with most things, it can always be improved. One of the questions that we are seeing asked with an increased frequency is based around the best microphone for Sony a6500 cameras. Thankfully, there are some great external microphones on the market right now that will help to improve the audio track that you are able to capture with your a6500.
If you are on a very tight budget then you may be able to get everything that you need out of the Rode Video Micro Compact but in all honesty, we feel that the Rode Video Mic Go is the better option for the a6500 by a long shot. It offers professional-level audio recording for a low price point and helps you get the best audio track possible with ease and without breaking the bank.
The Rode Video Mic Go is an extremely popular microphone with a large customer base from videographers, vloggers, streamers, and social media influencers and has managed to earn itself one of the best reputations for a modern external microphone. Although the Rode Video Mic Go comes with a sub-one hundred dollar price point, it offers excellent performance relative to the compeating microphones on the market right now making it the obvious addition to your camera accessories.
We will now be taking a more in-depth look at the Rode Video Mic Go and what it has to offer you and your Sony a6500. Our hope is that we will be able to explain how the microphone will benefit you and your video recording and compare it to some of the compeating microphones on the market right now. As with most things in life, there are some terrible microphones in the sub-one hundred dollar price bracket that are a waste of time and money but have flashy marketing and sales teams to try and trick people into purchasing them but they all fall short of the Rode Video Mic Go and even the Rode Video Micro Compact to some extent in our opinion.
Performance And Functionality Of The Microphone
The Rode Video Mic Go is essentially the kind of the sub-one hundred-dollar microphone price point right now due to the excellent performance and functionality that it can offer you without having to break the bank. Its audio recording quality is easily comparable to that of microphones that cost more than it from some operating brands, sometimes even costs just over twice the price. This is down to Rode ensuring that their brand stands for the highest possible standards of quality with the lowest possible price tag.
The Rode Video Mic Go has a right pickup area focused directly in front of the microphone offering a crisp, clear, and clean audio track for niches such as interviews and vlogging or anything else where your sound source is directly in front of the mic. That said though, the left and right pickup is still solid and better than many of the other microphones in this price bracket meaning that you can also use the microphone for recording sporting events, music events or ambient audio depending on the niche that you are working in with your Sony a6500.
Rode also includes their Rycote Lyre shock mount with your purchase of the Rode Video Mic Go as standard too offering you some premium level shock absorption without having to purchase an aftermarket shock mount. At the time of writing, in our opinion, the included Rode microphone is better than many of the stand-alone, third-party shock mounts anyway helping you to keep the costs down. Due to this nice little touch proving so popular, the vast majority of the compeating premium level microphone brands out there have also started to also up their game when it comes to the shock mount that they include with their microphones too.
The Rycote Lyre shock mount performs flawlessly and can help to ensure you are getting the best audio track possible in some niches. If you are into a vlogging or videography niche where you are required to move your Sony a6500 around rapidly then the mount will absorb much of the vibration and movement and prevent it from transferring over to the actual microphone on your camera. This, in turn, stops the random pops due to the vibrations hitting your microphone element and helps keep your audio track clean.
Another thing that Rode includes with their microphones to help improve the overall audio quality that you can record with the microphone as well as increase its versatility is its deluxe windshield. Now, in all fairness, the vast majority of the compeating premium level microphone brands also include a pretty decent windshield, we just wanted to point out that Rode also includes a solid one removing the need to buy one and increase costs.
The windshield ensures that if you are outside with your a6500 and your Rode Video Mic Go then you get the same great audio capture as you would indoors without the wind causing your microphone and audio track issues. In our opinion, if you are outside recording then you should definitely be using your windshield but we have seen a number of people who use their included windshield at all times even when inside to add some additional protection to the microphone in general.
Here are some of the other key features and specifications of the Rode Video Mic Go that may be helpful to know depending on the niche that you are working in:-
- Capsule: 0.50″
- Polar Pattern: Supercardioid
- Address Type: End
- Frequency Range: 100Hz – 16kHz
- Maximum SPL: 120dBSPL
- Sensitivity: -35.0dB re 1 Volt/Pascal (17.80mV @ 94 dB SPL) +/- 2 dB @ 1kHz
- Equivalent Noise Level (A-weighted): 34dBA
When you factor in all of this and these solid specifications for a microphone that is less than one hundred dollars from most vendors then you can see why the Rode Video Mic Go is such a popular option amongst the community. Many of the videographers, vloggers, streamers, and social media influences who use the microphone with their cameras have also published their own dedicated reviews of it too.
If you do have some time free then reading over some of those reviews can be well worth it as they offer insight into pretty much any situation or niche that you may have to work in with the Rode Video Mic Go and your a6500. They have all been published by third-party, independent users too with some of them using the microphone with the Sony a6500 also.
User Interface And Control System
Rode has done a great job of making the vast majority of their videography microphones plug and play or as close to being a plug and play microphone as possible. You simply mount the Rode Video Mic Go to the hot shoe mount on your Sony a6500 and then plug the 3.5mm jack into the external microphone input on your a6500 and it is good to go. This allows you to quickly and easily get your gear ready to go without having to waste a whole bunch of time every time.
If you are new to using an external microphone with your a6500 and have always used the onboard mic then the Rode Video Mic Go works to you advantage as it has already been pre-optimized and is ready to go for the vast majority of niches and situations that you may find yourself involved in. Some of the other compeating sub-one hundred dollar price points try to boast that they offer large amounts of customization but in this day and age, this is really not required, especially on an entry-level or intermediate microphone as the shipping configurations are excellent anyway.
Build Quality And Design
Rode have managed to maintain their reputation that they earned pretty early on for offering their customers some of the best build quality possible for their microphone range and the Rode Video Mic Go is no different. It has the professional level build quality and is made from materials that not only keep is lightweight but also ensure that the mic is tough and robust too. On top of this, the small size of the microphone and its lightweight make it very easy to use as a traveling microphone for your a6500 if required too.
Although the hot shoe on the microphone is plastic, it has been specifically treat to ensure that it will hold its shape just as well as a metal hot shoe for many years to come. Some microphone brands just use a regular plastic hotshot mount that can end up changing shape over time and actually jam to your camera after mounting but the heat treating process that Rode put their microphone mounts through prevent this.
The Rycote Lyre shock mount that comes with the Rode Video Mic Go is excellent too and has been made from one single piece of thermoplastic rather than multiple smaller parts jointed together. Although this may not sound like it will have much impact on the mount’s performance, being one single piece of plastic ensures that it is able to smoothly absorb vibration with zero joint transference that some other mounts have. This helps to not only improve the level of vibration and shock that it is able to absorb to improve performance but the lack of a joint also means there is no inherent weak spot on the mount either.
That concludes our thoughts going over what we feel is the best microphone for Sony a6500 camera bodies on the market right now and although some people may be able to get away with using the Rode Video Micro Compact, we feel that the Rode Video Mic Go is well worth the small increase in price tag for the better performance for your a6500. We are confident that adding the Rode Video Mic Go to your collection of camera accessories will be a valuable investment as it is an excellent little external microphone offering great audio quality.
As we mentioned earlier in the article, the Rode Video Mic Go also has a massive number of independent reviews online that have been published by third-party videographers, vloggers, and streamers over the years. They are well worth reading in our opinion as they offer some excellent insight into just how well the Rode Video Mic Go performs as well as offering some specific insight into how well it does for specific niches and situations too.