Podcasting Tools

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posted on Oct, 4 2005 @ 08:54 PM
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Ok, I thought I would put this up for all the people who want some advice.

First let me state I am not an expert in sound, but I have found many of these things great. Now I must stress that I have found the most expense I had to spend was about $55 (American) on a good microphone (Radio Shack). That has been my total investment (and new podcast with it coming in a few days.)

Now, some great software which is FREE.

www.audacity.com...
This program allows you to take sounds (mp3, wav, etc..) and import them in. From there you can add other "tracks" like voice, sound effects, etc. It will import everything in separate lines. You can then move the sounds where you like (ie. I want the applause the 2:00 mark), add echos or even reduce the volume of the music (for voiceovers).

radix.com.mx...
Podproducer. All I can say is I love this program. I have had issues because for me it's either mic input or system input...but not both. I believe this is a limited issue for people with average sound cards (as in my laptop). The interface is great and this software has the most tools I have seen for podcasting. It's like working a sound board at a radio station. It has audio "decks" for music (can configure how many you want), smaller buttons for sound effects or smaller tracks (again, you can pick how many, and a host of crossfade, voiceover and other tools and features (lots of features really.)
I'm actually upset to share this tool because I can't use it to it's full potential. It's like giving someone else your car.


www.castblaster.com...
Another great tool. Didn't work for me but only because of my system configuration. I believe that Podproducer is a better interface, but CastBlaster does have some features that others don't.

Podcast Bunker
For the more advanced, this is a site that has a downloadable audio VU meter and various tones so you can calibrate your system.

I'll add more here as I find them. Others...please feel free to add any tools that have made your podcasting better.




Also see: The Idiots Guide to Podcasting by mrwupy




posted on Oct, 5 2005 @ 08:12 PM
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The website for Audacity is in fact audacity.sourceforge.net... , audacity.com is the website for a totally different company.

Hope this helps



posted on Oct, 13 2005 @ 08:44 AM
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What's the best (affordable) USB micropone to purcase to make podcast?

I' consideriing a purase soon, so any guidence would be grealy appreciated.



posted on Oct, 31 2005 @ 12:00 PM
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Use you iPod to record now, just get one of these handy little gadgets.
Either the voice recorder ($49.99) or the microphone adaptor ($29.99).



www.portablegadgets.net...



posted on Nov, 1 2005 @ 08:37 AM
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How do I tell non-members about our PODcasts? How can they most easily access ATS PODcasts?

Do they have to open ATS or can they go right to the feed somewhere?

Thanks.



posted on Nov, 1 2005 @ 11:31 AM
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Originally posted by Benevolent Heretic
How do I tell non-members about our PODcasts? How can they most easily access ATS PODcasts?

Do they have to open ATS or can they go right to the feed somewhere?

Thanks.



On this page on the left (down a bit) are links to the RSS feeds:
www.abovetopsecret.com...

They look like this:
www.abovetopsecret.com...

They can just put these into iTunes to get automated updates. Or I believe they can also us this one link to subscribe to ATS:
phobos.apple.com...



posted on Nov, 1 2005 @ 02:11 PM
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I just picked up a new microphone that is apparently the hot mic for podcasting. The Samsung C01U is a hot condenser mic with a built-in preamp and phantom power direct from your USB port.

It's been out of stock all over the place, but B+H Photo here in the city just got some in. At $80 +/-, it's reported to be a significant improvement over mid-range $50 microphones, and even out-performs some mic/preamp combinations.

I'll be testing it out later tonight.



posted on Nov, 1 2005 @ 02:36 PM
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Here is an incredibly informative if dull internet torrent episode all about Podcasting.

revision3.com...

It includes a very interesting look at a professional radio host on a shoestring budget, very interesting for those really into this.

Here are some more links.

Inexpensive Mic

Serious Audio & Audio Electronics store

Sound Blaster - Audigy line of products

Adobe Audition Demo

Register Member Feeds here That is if they aren't already.

[edit on 1-11-2005 by sardion2000]



posted on Nov, 1 2005 @ 04:38 PM
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Originally posted by SkepticOverlord
I just picked up a new microphone that is apparently the hot mic for podcasting. The Samsung C01U is a hot condenser mic with a built-in preamp and phantom power direct from your USB port.
...
I'll be testing it out later tonight.


Cool.

My computer has USB ports, but the soundcard does not have them on it
directly. It is an Intel motherboard with soundcard built onto the
motherboard. If I plug a USB mic into one of the generic USB ports on my
system, will it be recognized for what it is and I'll be able to record
using it? Anyone?

Can't wait to hear how it sounds!


xu

posted on Nov, 1 2005 @ 06:20 PM
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Originally posted by Benevolent Heretic
If I plug a USB mic into one of the generic USB ports on my system, will it be recognized for what it is and I'll be able to record using it? Anyone?


Sure you will be able to record. but also consider these;

usb mics dont use the soundcards, you can even record sound with them without even having a soundcard, that could be considered an upside maybe. they directly connect to motherboard, which is not totally designed for sound input and lacks the hardware filters of a soundcard which are located right besides the jack inputs. besides they have yet the problem of latency which will not be ideal if you are recording something in sync with another soundfile. this is also why RJ-45 connection modems are preferred instead of USB modems it is about the USB interface.

your motherboard by itself creates frequency pollution, onboard soundcards pick these, if you record the incard ambient sound while surfing the net and amplify the recording to the max you will see that your actions will create clicks & beeps. (trigerred when you view a pic, save a file, minimize the window etc.) it is best to have an isolated card from the board, which leds me to believe that directly connecting a mic to the motherboard (not even to the soundcard) will not give you the best sound quality. but it is completely digital and sound is regarded as data there so this may not be the case.

I have one USB mic but I can not validate if its just mine or the characteristics of the usb mics ( which I believe it is), you cannot hear the sound you input through the mic in real time. you will not hear your voice through the headphones while recording. at least with mine you cannot, and the method the USB mics use support this ( no soundcard use). so it will not be ideal for recording for music related stuff.

however I cant see any problems to use them for usual voice recording, chat, audio conference etc. thats what I use it for. Maybe it will be best to wait until the mics come out which use Firewire interface.



posted on Nov, 2 2005 @ 12:30 AM
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I am using Audacity and a telephony mic which is giving me great clear sound, the only problem is my file sizes are enormous. I have tried encoding them as 80Hz mpg3 files, but they are still significantly larger than other podcasts.

Any tips on getting file size down some more? What is the past encoding method which doesn't lead to a drop in sound quality?

Podcasting rocks the Kaspa people!


xu

posted on Nov, 2 2005 @ 04:31 AM
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Originally posted by howmuchisthedoggy
I have tried encoding them as 80Hz mpg3 files, but they are still significantly larger than other podcasts.

Any tips on getting file size down some more? What is the past encoding method which doesn't lead to a drop in sound quality?


I think by 80 Hz you mean 88.200 Hz or 88.2 KHz, which is the sample rate of the soundfile, 44.100 Hz (44.1 KHz) is the CD quality so your files are double the CD quality which is not what you orgininally intend for. if this is the case convert it to 44.1 KHz and then encode it , you will get the usual file sizes.

if in the otherhand you mean 80 kbps encoding rate, which I didnt came across besides catalyst mp3 encoder (generally goes like 64, 96, 128,160, 192 Kbps...) so then again check the sampling rate and lower it to 44.1 KHz.

you see there are two parameters, one is the encoding rate (kbps) and the other is sample rate (Hz), if you make one /2 and other x2 it will cancel eachother, kind of. so keep the Hz at 44.1, it is ideal, and lower the kbps.



posted on Nov, 2 2005 @ 04:35 AM
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I set my LAME encoder to 64 kbps and use 22khz. File size is significantly smaller, and still sounds fine.

(Unlike FredT's Left channel only sound )




audacity.sourceforge.net...

Here are instructions for the LAME encoder to work with Audacity. I highly recommend going that route, as it's easy, sounds good, and its very customizable.

[edit on 11/2/2005 by Kalapadea]



posted on Nov, 2 2005 @ 09:10 PM
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Also, Though TrueAmerican and Springer tell me it's very unrealistic... it works nonetheless:

You do NOT need a microphone to do a podcast, any plain old headphones will work just fine. Granted, it won't sound as good, but you won't be buying anything if you already have a pair. Just plug your exisiting headphones into the Microphone jack, and talk directly in. It will sound kind of muffled, sure, I mean you're talking back through a speaker. But since the components are similar, its possible to use. Just htought I'd mention that to anyone who isn't podcasting out of lack of hardware.



posted on Nov, 2 2005 @ 09:48 PM
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Here's a quick listen to the new microphone linked earlier in this thread

www.podtrac.com...



posted on Nov, 2 2005 @ 10:00 PM
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I use a cheap mic from wallyworld, costs less then ten bucks, and so far no one has complained about the quality of the casts i've made. I use Audacity and though I could go for some sound effects I don't bother, I'm stating an opinion, not going for higher ratings.

Podcasting does NOT cost allot of money, unless its just money you want to spend.

I am thinking of upgrading though, Now that i've been casting a month or so. This is still in the fantasy phase though......

Love and light,

Wupy



posted on Nov, 2 2005 @ 10:12 PM
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Originally posted by SkepticOverlord
Here's a quick listen to the new microphone linked earlier in this thread

www.podtrac.com...


Amazing.

That is a great sounding mic.



posted on Nov, 2 2005 @ 10:21 PM
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Thanks to Kalapadea and xu for your encoding info! I did a few tests and the file size is a lot smaller with no real discernable drop in quality.

I don't think you need to splash out on any equipment. Go listen to any of mrwupy's podcasts, and if that is the quality from a 10 dollar mike, than you don't really need to be spending any more.

I just use a telephony headset and audacity. Cost me nothing and once the mike was set up properly, the quality from the recordings was great. Go listen to any of my podcasts and let me know what you think.

I think that speaking up and speaking more clearly also makes a big difference. The first few tests I did, I was very self-concious about speaking to myself like that. However, a few podcasts later and after hearing how well speaking up and ad libbing sounds, all I can recommend to anyone yet to try podcasting is practice, practice, practice.



posted on Nov, 3 2005 @ 06:26 PM
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What you need:

-Microphone – Any old mic will do. A headphone set from a phone works fine.
-Software – Download (free) Audacity here: audacity.sourceforge.net... When you click to download Audacity 1 2 3, also download the LAME mp3 encoder. That's for exporting your audio files into mp3 files.

Plug your mic into the back of your computer and you’re ready to PODcast.

Open Audacity. Right in the center there’s a little white _ Make sure it says ‘Microphone’ in there. If not, use the drop down arrow to change it.

Push the round red record button and a track appears. Talk into the mic. See your voice? Now push the square yellow button to stop the recording. Then push the green triangle to listen to what you’ve just recorded. Play around recording different sound levels.

Use the slide button to the left of the Microphone window to increase or decrease your input volume. In other words, if you can’t hear your recording very well, turn up the input level and record again. If the sound wave hits the top and bottom of the track, turn it down and try it again.

Play around with your recording. Select different parts of the audio with your mouse and use the ‘Effect’ menu to remove noise, amplify (+ or -) different parts of the audio wave. You can always undo the last effect using the edit menu.

Once you get a recording ready, it’s time to save it. Use the File menu to Export as mp3. Now you have a PODcast and are ready to visit the PODcast page to upload it.
www.abovetopsecret.com...

Fill out all the fields on the right, hit the upload button and your PODcast will appear in the PODcast section!

A couple of pointers on Audacity:
To keep file sizes small:
File - Preferences - File Formats (tab) Bit Rate = 64
For some reason I’m not sure of:

In the track drop down menu, select Set Rate and choose 48,000


[edit on 3-11-2005 by Benevolent Heretic]



posted on Nov, 3 2005 @ 10:35 PM
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*Or a pair of headphones

I'm just saying it, because it DOES work!





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