Godox announces the Virso and Virso S cableless wireless microphones
It seems redundant to call a wireless microphone “cableless”. But if there’s one consistency with the plethora of wireless microphones on the market, it’s that they need a cable to send audio from the receiver to the camera. The new Godox Virso still requires that cable, but for Sony shooters, the Godox Virso S doesn’t. Instead, it communicates with the camera directly using the multi-function hotshoe.
With that one exception for Sony shooters, these microphone systems are similar to other devices of this type. There’s a receiver that goes on the camera along with one or a pair of transmitters. Each transmitter features a built-in microphone and the ability to plug in a wired lavalier mic. The transmitters can also record internally to microSD cards for up to 400 hours of recording.
The Virso S differentiates itself from the rest of the wireless microphone systems out there in that it seems to offer three audio channels. Exactly how it does this is unclear when most video formats will only record two channels for audio. The receiver has a microphone built into it, as well as the two transmitters. Whether you’re able to utilise all three or you’re supposed to use the receiver mic in conjunction with a single transmitter – like the Rode Wireless ME (buy here) – or if it merges all three into a single mono channel is unknown.
Also unknown at this time is whether the receiver of the Virso S receives power from the Sony multifunction shoe or if it’s only used to send audio data into the camera. Either way, the receiver can be charged via USB-C for up to 17 hours of use. Each transmitter battery holds up to 13 hours of use. The M2 (dual transmitter) kit for the Virso and Virso S also includes a charging case for on-the-go charging and up to 40 hours more use.
Godox says the Virso offers a range of up to 200 metres and contains many of the features we’d expect to see in such devices. When recording a single microphone, you can send a -6dB safety channel to the camera as a backup in case of clipping. You’re also able to record internally in each transmitter. It’s not built-in memory, though. Instead, it uses microSD cards. It supports capacities of up to 256GB for up to 400 hours of record time.
They also feature denoising, one-button mute, one-press pairing, mono or stereo mode, gain adjustment and screen rotation for different mounting orientations of the receiver. The Virso S is designed specifically for Sony cameras, taking advantage of the multifunction hotshoe. The standard Virso will work with all cameras (including Sony) that feature a standard 3.5mm audio input.
The new Godox Virso system looks like a significant step up from their prior Godox Movelink (buy here). It offers more essential features, like internal recording and manages to do so without increasing the price too much. In fact, it’s very competitive.
I’m curious to see if Godox eventually makes a version of this that works with Canon. Now that they’re implementing their own multi-function hotshoe across the board on new cameras, it makes sense for them to target those, too. Of course, Canon hasn’t been the best at 3rd party compatibility when it comes to their new mirrorless cameras. So, it’s possible that Godox won’t be allowed to create one specifically for Canon RF mount cameras.
Price and Availability
The Godox Virso and Virso S wireless systems will be available in a number of packages, although no actual availability date has yet been announced. I expect that as with most Godox devices, they’ll just randomly pop up on Amazon one day, with the usual retailers getting them shortly after. But, here’s what will be available and their expected prices.
- Godox Virso M1 (single receiver, single transmitter) – $179
- Godox Virso M2 (single receiver, dual transmitters, with charging case) – $249
- Godox Virso SRX (Sony receiver with no transmitter) – $149
- Godox Virso S M1 (single Sony receiver, single transmitter) – $209
- Godox Virso S M2 (single Sony receiver, dual transmitters, with charging case) – $299
For more information, visit the Godox website.
John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.