Podcasting tips: equipment

was recently asked for some tips on podcasting via email and I decided it would be a good idea to throw them up my website here for anyone else interested. Podcasting can be as simple as recording from your phone and putting it online or as complicated as getting a $300 microphone, a mixer and professional software. How you podcast is based on how much effort you plan to put into it and how much you’re willing to spend. I would suggest starting simple and cheap and then build on that as you get more into it.

Below you’ll find podcasting tips for a single person setup that costs about $50. The person I was giving tips to was for equipment and software ONLY. If you’re planning on podcasting you’ll need to consider hosting options for your audio files.

Get Audacity, a microphone and a headset or earphones.

Audacity is a really good free audio editing software: http://audacity.sourceforge.net/

It's what I use for my podcasts and fairly intuitive to learn.

Just about any mic available will work for recording a voice, whether it's a headset, a built-in laptop microphone or even a phone if it has recording capabilities. Your quality mileage will vary depending on how much is spent on the microphone.

I would recommend audacity, any headset or earphones and an ATR2100 USB mic: http://www.amazon.com/Audio-Technica-ATR2100-USB-Cardioid-Dynamic-Microphone/dp/B004QJOZS4

It's under $50 bucks but will improve the quality of the audio significantly and because it's USB all you have to do is plug it into the computer and go. And because it has an XLR connection it can also be hooked up to other more advanced audio devices. It's the same microphone David, Sean and I use for Crawfish Boxes: Astros Baseball Show. I would also recommend some sort of screen for the microphone. A cheap option would be a simple screen for the microphone. http://www.amazon.com/Stage-Foam-Ball-Type-Windscreen-Black/dp/B0002GXF8Q/ref=sr_1_2?s=musical-instruments&ie=UTF8&qid=1406421196&sr=1-2&keywords=microphone+windscreen

A more expensive option would be to get a desktop mic stand ($15) and a pop filter ($10-15).

$3 is about the cheapest you can go and again will improve the quality of the audio. Something I take very seriously if you hadn’t noticed.

Gaming headset also have decent microphones, but won’t be better than the ATR2100.


12th episode:

This is me with a gaming headset.

127th episode:

This is me with the ATR2100.

Now I have refined my editing and audio processing techniques, but this still should give you a good idea on the quality difference in microphones.

Next: editing and processing tips