Contrary to what most people think, not all podcasters do their recordings in the comfort of their own homes. Some on-the-go podcasters do this from various locations for many reasons, one of which is that their interviewees don’t have the option or liberty to leave their current locale.
That’s why in today’s hardware feature, I’m listing three of the best microphones for the roving podcaster. Here they are in no particular order:
Made by Blue Microphones, the Snowball is a true plug-and-play device, quick and easy to setup because it requires no power hub or driver. It is capable of recording 44.1kHz audio at 16-bit resolution and has a frequency response of 40Hz-18kHz. At the back is a 3-point switch that lets you set the recording patterns (cardioid, cardioid with 10dB pad, and omni). In layman’s terms, that means you can set the pick up range from ‘Wide’ for recording two or more people, to ‘Focused’ for recording just one person.
Bottom line is, it won’t replace your studio quality mic but this is a good deal in itself. It wouldn’t surprise me if professional musicians use this to record their ideas and rough demos while on the road.
The Snowball comes in white, silver and black. Also available is a universal shock mount/suspension kit, which helps eliminate external vibrations and noise. Personally, its looks alone is enough to make me want one.
Samson Meteor Mic
Setting its attention-grabbing and undeniably sleek vintage design aside, the Samson Meteor Mic comes with an equally cool integrated stand that provides several standing position options and a neat carry case. Moreover, on its body you’ll find an LED status light indicator, a stereo 1/8-inch zero latency headphone output, and a volume control.
It sports a cardioid pick up pattern capable of 16-bit, 44.1/48kHz recording resolution and frequency response of 20Hz-20kHz. And like the Snowball, the Meteor Mic also requires no driver install and USB power hub, making it ideal for use in VOIP, Skype, and of course, podcasting.
Blue Microphones Snowflake
Last but certainly not least is the Snowball’s cousin, the Snowflake. I guess one could say that Blue Microphones has just found its way into the hearts of a considerable number of podcasters.
Like the two aforementioned microphones, this condenser cardioid microphone is also a driverless device that has no need for any power hub that’s capable of recording 44.1kHz at 16-bit resolution.
Its whole compact design is just ideal for traveling podcasters as it comes with an integrated tray for its 3-foot USB cable making transportation convenient. Plus, its foldable mounting clip allows it to easily rest on your laptop.
Love, love, love! It’s the season of hearts once again and as we approach V-day, here’s something from the gang of Just Noise Podcast with the Duchess and Uggers. Episode 29 features discussions about movies, birthday celebrations, dating and special Valentine’s dinners. Listen to the podcast now!
Super Bowl XLVI may be over but the fever still runs high! Now that we finally know who the 2011 champ is, we can move on to the upcoming NFL aces for 2012. And what better way is there to get a good prediction than to look closely at the recent developments in each of the team’s roster?
You can get the latest updates on your favorite team’s lineup over at NFL Draft Tracker, the official podcast of the NFL in everything related to draft picks and player trades. Get ready to place your bets!
You’ve got your own podcasting platform, your listeners, and your topics. You may have been podcasting regularly, but with a few tweaks like those mentioned below, you can still upgrade your podcast quality – and perhaps increase your audience. At the very least, you can increase your existing audience’s interest in your material. Good luck!
Invest in a professional mic for better sound quality. There are a number of entry-level professional mics that provide smooth sound output yet won’t strain your budget. Besides, most of these models come from the same companies that produce pricier and high-end recording gear as alternatives to suit everyone’s needs and budget constraints.
Music adds more color and depth to your work. An intro and outro may sound professional but before you take on clips of your favorite song, be wary of copyright laws that cover it. You don’t want to get sued for copyright infringement right?
Instead of using label-owned music, you can use available soundtrack samples from recording software. You may want to check out Royalty Free Music, Freeplay Music , Music Bakery, and Shockwave for podcast-friendly music.
3. Sound Adjustments
You should learn how to work with editing software. Invest time in it so you can have total control over factors like sound levels, dead air, speaker volume – left and right channel, sound output balance, fading in and out into your intro and outro soundtrack, etc. Good editing can greatly improve your work’s final output and make it sound professional. The same applies to creating videos for your podcast.
A microphone screen – or even a piece of nylon stocking stretched over a loop of wire – can help reduce and filter out unnecessary and annoying sounds like popping (loud P’s and B’s) and breathiness in your recordings. You may not notice your little exhalations when you speak, but your listeners can.
5. A Dedicated Website
Move your podcast from a free service platform to your own blog site. Using a more dedicated website leaves a more professional and authentic impression on your listeners and visitors. Also, this gives you more freedom to include upcoming shows, iTunes subscription links, contact information, events, promos, free downloads, show notes and RSS, all of which can be very attractive to your existing and potential audience.
PowerPress is a great WordPress plugin both for blogging and especially podcasting. It makes podcasting really easy and even lets you have real stats!
It’s pretty easy to set up, with six different audio players and 2 video players, all of which are highly customizable players.
The players also come with a download link so users don’t have to add an HTML at the end of every post just to do it manually; it’s all done automatically now. Its audio player options have also been getting a lot of positive feedback from users.
PowerPress provides support to a whole bunch of stuff: HTML5 video, iTunes, multi-podcasts, and a myriad of media formats!
If I were to nitpick on anything about this amazing plugin, it’s that you to create an account just to use their stats program.
In case you still haven’t it tried out yet, download it from here, right now!
Web developer Kyle Graham has silently released a new plugin for WordPress that would change the course of blogging and even podcasting. It is called VoicePress.
Preview the VoicePress.it speech recognition WordPress plugin from WPCandy on Vimeo.
This is an amazing plugin that uses voice recognition software to transcribe your recordings as you speak. Since it is still in its early stages, expect upcoming improvements soon. For now, it is available in beta and only works in Chrome browser.
It would be very interesting to see how WordPress-based podcasters maximize this awesome tool, transcribing the spoken word into the written word, especially for WordPress mobile versions.
Download the plugin HERE, for free: