If you have a favorite streamer, chances are you’ve seen Rode’s PSA1 hanging in the corner of the frame. Or maybe you are that streamer? Rode’s boom arm has become the right choice for YouTube, Twitch channels and podcasters. As handy as the PSA1 is, it’s not that good for lighter cameras and microphones – at least not without some DIY settings.
Enter PSA1 + ($ 129). Introduced today, it is a revised version of the ubiquitous microphone arm that will handle devices light up to 94 g / 3.3 oz. This may not sound like much, but the original needed a lot more weight to maintain balance, effectively shutting down any microphone or camera below 700 g / 24.7 oz. This excludes most webcams, all GoPros (which can now function as webcams) and a number of other more affordable microphones. Sure, you can tighten the screws or mess with the counterweights, but that’s not always ideal or guaranteed to work.
Functionally, the PSA1 + feels much closer to something like Blue’s Compass that stays in place even without weight thanks to a combination of hand-tightened friction hinges and an internal spring mechanism. The Blue offering might be better for lighter microphones and cameras, but it doesn’t adjust its position as precisely or smoothly as the PSA1 (although cable management is better).
Extended device support on PSA1 + is not the only new feature. Rode claims that the new arm is completely silent so you won’t suffer from crooked creaks or spring sounds during your stream or recording. The company also states that this is part thanks to a revised spring design along with a jazz new neoprene cover (which makes PSA1 + look like it’s headed to the gym). The cover makes the design more attractive compared to the original standard aesthetics of the “table lamp”. Despite that, a pretty strong brand is printed on the side that will probably catch your eye during the video. Unfortunately, you don’t seem to be able to do much about it because the neoprene seems to be physically connected to the cable clips.
Those clips are a good thing though. As mentioned, cable management, which was functional but wasn’t nice on the PSA1 (essentially it was cable ties) now uses neater, tighter plastic clips that should be more convincing. Now at least your USB or XLR cable will mostly be out of sight.
The PSA1 + will sell for $ 129 tomorrow.
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