Producing a Podcast

For one of my assignments in PIDP 3240 I decided to produce a podcast!

You can check out the final product here.

I thought I’d write this post to share a little bit of a behind-the-scenes look at how it was made.  The process was really simple and if I can do it, anyone can!

So first and foremost, you are going to want a decent microphone.  After a bit of research, I decided on the Blue Yeti.   It’s pretty much an “industry” standard and I could tell from the moment I plugged it in, recorded my first sound bite, and listened back that there was a palpable difference between my previous run-of-the-mill mic.  For this project, I used the cardioid setting and definitely appreciated the 48kHz sample rate. Here’s a look at my set-up:

IMG_20170503_202559.jpg

As far as software goes, you can’t go wrong with the powerfully robust (and free) Audacity.  It should be self-explanatory how you start and stop recording and adjust the various levels, but I’m also going to run through a bit of how I post-processed my voice for some added pop.

You may have noticed that I did an interview via Skype for my podcast.  The quality of the Skype call could have definitely been far better.  I tried using the Windows WASAPI mode in Audacity to record the call, but was having technical difficulties while on the line, so just resorted to running the Skype call through a monitor and recording that with the microphone.  Definitely not ideal but I was kind of stuck at the time.  Something to try to explore and sort out for the next time I try an interview.

Anyway, once you record your soundbites there’s a super simple way to clean it up.  You can see in the image below that I left a good 10 seconds of white noise before I started speaking. When you’re done recording, select that first 10 seconds of white noise, click Effect and select Noise Reduction.  Then click Get Noise Profile. Then select your entire sound clip, click Effect and select Noise Reduction again. This time select OK. This will significantly clean up any background noise that may have been plaguing your recording.

I still thought it could have sounded a bit more like a studio though. So I started searching around for some better sound quality advice. This video was hands down the most helpful thing out there and I used this really easy process with great success and I totally recommend it:

To round it out I found some really catchy music at Free Music Archive. There’s something for everyone there.

And that’s pretty much it!

I’ve already had a second go at it and I think it turned out even better with just a single podcast under my belt.

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