February 27, 2019 4 min read
It takes a lot of guts to start a podcast, especially with so many already in existence. Conceptualizing innovative and compelling content that keeps listeners coming back for more is hard enough, and it’s even harder to finesse it all together with a high production value. But there are thousands of powerful and well-produced podcasts out there, so it must be possible, right?
The new era of the podcast is upon us, and it’s our duty to make the most of it. Whether your prowess is protons or your forte is Fortnite, here are some worthwhile and easy-to-use tools and techniques to get you started creating your own quality podcast in no time.
The classic garage-turned-recording-studio setup isn’t too far from many podcaster’s reality. Any soundproof room with ample space for computers, microphones, scripts, soundboards and guests is the perfect venue for in-studio recording. One noteworthy addition to your podcasting arsenal is Blue’s Yeti USB microphone.
The Yeti is a go-to for any up-close-and-personal dialogue recording, and will only cost you $129.99. Easily controlled with any sufficient laptop and software, this versatile mic is a standard for home-studio vocal and instrumental recording. Featuring 3 condenser capsules and multi-directional patterning, the sleek and stylish Yeti can capture the crisp and rich vocal textures of either a solo host or a room full of guests for your listeners to indulge in on their morning commute.
As far as recording software goes, the fan favorites tend to be Garageband, Adobe Audition, or Logic Pro. Podcast editing can be relatively simple, so the easiest and most accessible option is undoubtedly Audacity, an open-source application that supplies you with the bare bones necessary for audio recording, including multi-track recording, basic cut/paste editing, and simple features to control volume, speed, and optional plug-ins. It’s nothing fancy, but it’ll get your podcast off the ground and can be a great practice in recording and editing audio until you’re ready to delve into a more complex program.
If you've got a bit more to spend, we'd recommend going for a comprehensive, all-inclusive bundle. The truth is, to record a podcast you'll need a lot more than just a microphone; you'll need an entire setup of equipment to get the ball rolling.
That's why Movo has put together the Podcasting Bundle, which includes everything you need to start a podcast: a Zoom H6 six track recorder, 4 handheld microphones, 4 desktop mic stands and mic clips, and 4 10-foot XLR cables.
The Zoom H6 is a professional quality microphone that allows for recording versatility. When you add in everything else that comes with it, this is the perfect bundle for any podcaster, at any level.
Though podcasters often thrive in a controlled studio space, many others feel that this strategy can feel overly staged and limiting, and vie for a more reporter-like approach by recording out in the field. If this feels appropriate to your content, then by all means, go for it! Just bear a few things in mind: like everything in the wild, the outdoors can be a bit unpredictable, and it’s no different when it comes to audio. If you’re recording outside, then be aware of background noise: powerful winds, cars whizzing by, planes flying overhead, crying babies…just about any noise you can think of, because there’s a lot of it out there. You'll also want to consider your microphone placement and set up. It may be difficult to find a flat surface to place a table-top microphone. Try one of our clip on mics and pick from our collection of the best mics for interviews.
If you’re up to braving the noisy outside world, be sure to record clean audio with a quality wireless mic, as well as a quality recorder (you can read up on wireless microphone recommendations here). Tascam and Zoom are two of the top-rated brands of recorders, and both deliver an array of models that can fit any and all of your outdoor podcasting needs to keep your audience on the edge of their seat while they listen during lunch break.
Podcasters frequently find themselves reaching to the far corners of the internet for guests or content to present on their show, and subsequently face the dilemma of figuring out how to effectively host people from around the world. Although this isn’t always the cleanest or easiest option, it is often a necessary one.
Luckily, there is a program out there with us lost podcasters in mind. While Skype, Zoom or Google Hangouts might get the message across for free, Zencastr gets the same message across with an array of amenities (some requiring the $20/mo. payment) that cater specifically to podcasters through a smooth and accessible interface. Zencastr features a simple Hangout-esque group session for your podcast guests, separate tracks for various voices, lossless WAV recordings, Dropbox integration, text chat options, and live editing soundboards. There’s even the (paid) option to have the software perform automatic post-production to clean up noise, but take your chances with this feature as it’s anybody’s guess how their algorithm is going to manipulate your audio (sometimes that peak audio of laughter should stay in!).
So there you have it, podcasting in a nutshell. Even though there are endless topics and ways to structure your podcast, audio production can be quite simple once you’ve got the right tools in your possession, and the right mindset for producing. No matter your content, production always boils down to proficient equipment, clean-captured audio, and quality editing, and may not come with as hefty of a price tag as you might think. So, what are you waiting for? Grab a mic and get to podcasting!