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Sam Mallery

The Rode NTG-3 failing in cold weather...

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One post on a forum where the manufacturer told the poster to send the mic in for a replacement is not "a lot of evidence."

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One post on a forum where the manufacturer told the poster to send the mic in for a replacement is not "a lot of evidence."

Three different people reported the same problem in this thread:

http://www.freesound.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=8056&postdays=0&postorder=asc&start=0

I can only imagine that a very small percentage of people who experience this problem bothered to alert others about it through Internet forums.

I just figured I'd post it here as a heads up to anyone who may be heading out into the cold air with an NTG3.

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I used a NTG-3 for a couple weeks mostly outside in heavy cold rain. Worked fine...So I'm not sure there's a universal design problem with the mics.

Odd to hear about multiple users having issues. Would be interesting in hearing what Rode has to say. Perhaps they had a bad run, perhaps the problem's been solved, perhaps the mics were used on Hot Tub Time Machine...

Who knows?

Jim

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Good to know about a potential problem, even if it is only a few people reporting it. I bought an NTG-3 a while ago, haven't really put it through it's paces in terms of extreme weather conditions, but am heading to the US early next year and I imagine it will be cold...

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i recall reading that thread. seems the problem was more likely the operators didn't allow the mic to properly acclimate to temperature changes resulting in condensation, generally a problem with anything electronic, so i wouldn't blame it on rode.

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I just used the NTG-3 in subzero temps in Ouray, CO this week; or perhaps I should say I TRIED to use it -- it completely failed in temps below 10 degrees. We would warm it up in the car and test it -- it worked fine; and then it quit immediately in the cold. One day it worked when temps rose to 15-20; but the next day it didn't at all in similar conditions. We put our Zoom H4n on the boompole as a replacement to get us through.

Reading this thread, I don't see condensation as an issue. I could be wrong, but doesn't condensation really occur in the move from cold temps to warm, not in the other direction? I see this all the time with my camera gear, and have never had a problem moving from warm to cold environments.

Can anyone recommend a truly proven cold-weather shotgun mic? Thank you,

Tyler

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MKH 416 will never fail in any conditions

While I prefer the sound of my CMIT 5U I never leave home without my MKH 416 just like my Amex card :)

Not so true in my case... I had an almost brand new 416 capsule completely blow out on me, as well as the output circuitry.

Sennheiser/local distributor replaced it with new insides and a refurbished case. NOT a brand new mic, which would've been nice.

The 416 no longer lives in my kit, I use a CS3e ad NTG-3.

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That mic has a 10 year warranty.  Contact Rode and see what they say about it.

I bought mine as a backup, but I have used it a few times and it has been perfect.  Of course we don't get temps that cold here.  Guess I'll stick it in the freezer and see what happens.

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Reading this thread, I don't see condensation as an issue. I could be wrong, but doesn't condensation really occur in the move from cold temps to warm, not in the other direction? I see this all the time with my camera gear, and have never had a problem moving from warm to cold environments.

 

Actually no.  Warm air holds more moisture than cold so going from warm to cold creates condensation.  Think of the outside of a glass filled with ice water.  The cold glass is condensing the water out of the air.  Or the ice inside your freezer (if you don't have a no frost one.

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Sorry to chime in here, but I was tempted to re-phrase:

 

Think of the outside of a glass filled with ice water.  The cold glass is condensing the water out of the air.

 

Think of the outside of a mic filled with cold air. The cold mic is condensing the water out of the air.

 

As the air directly at the cold surface is being cooled down, it needs to get rid of its moisture. The moisture condenses on the cold surface.

Therefore, condensation is more of an issue when moving cold gear into warm air.

 

But it isn't a non-issue the other way round. Imagine that mic is taken from a normally heated room out into a cold winter's day. The first part to get cold is the outer shell, whereas the air inside is still warm. So air moisture inside the mic will condense on the cold surface again. If that surface happens to be one side of the diaphragm, or to be so close to some circuit that a droplet of water hit that circuit, there might be issues.

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Plus, above where the guy was reheating his mic in a car, he may have caused condensation, then outside this moisture on the mic could have frozen, totally shutting the mic down. Just like he said.

But, this conversation has already moved on

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I can confirm that this indeed is a problem that I have experienced. In -5°C today the NTG-3 started sputtering and fizzing and popping and then totally stopped working. Brought it back inside and in 15 mins it was working again. Gonna post an audio sample when I get home. Sending the mic in to get looked at, Rode has great warranties on their mics which shows they really stand by their products.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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