You want to record a stellar podcast. Everyone starts out in the trenches a bit, but if you can begin with a high level of quality, you’d might as well.
Audition is a piece of Adobe software that a lot of podcasters actually end up switching to later on down the line, but it’s completely viable to begin with Audition instead.
We’re going to go over everything that Adobe Audition can do for your podcast production, how to make it work for you, and where you need to get started if you want to make it begin making high-quality podcasts as soon as possible.
What is Adobe Audition?
Adobe Audition is their premiere program that allows you to edit audio with a world of possibility at your fingertips. It’s often compared to the Logic Pro X from Apple, however, it’s not designed for musicians where Logic Pro X is designed for all forms of audio engineering.
Adobe Audition is much better and more streamlined for podcast production, and of course, works well on Windows machines that the majority of us are already using. In short, it’s the all-in-one audio editing software you need as a podcaster, but not as a musician.
- Easily Saves in Multiple Formats: You’re not limited to one format type. Whether you have to compress your podcast so it complies with hosting services like Anchor, or you want it to be WAV and wide open, it’s entirely up to you. Adobe Audition makes it easy to edit and export in any manner that you see fit.
- Audio Restoration: A lot can happen during recording. That’s why audio engineers exist, and why editors don’t get the respect and adulation that they deserve. Audio restoration is what you need when your files become corrupted or distorted, and in the audio world, this can happen for seemingly no reason. Your equipment could be fine for 100 recordings, tweak out on the 101st recording, and then be fine again. Things happen, but the audio restoration features in Audition help you fight back against the unexpected.
- Helps You Design Audio for Streaming Services: Streaming services like Spotify and YouTube have their own bandwidth restrictions and limitations, but they’re difficult to adhere to at times. Most directories will have no problem uploading your podcast to each platform, but if you just want to host it on a single one without using a third-party service like Anchor to host your podcast, you can configure your settings to meet streaming service requirements with ease.
- Built for Broadcasting Standards (TV and Radio): Adobe Audition is a professional tool that’s actually used in television studios and radio shows across the US. Despite its limitations, Audition has the presets to help you get your audio ready for official broadcasting standards. You’ll have to toy around with the settings (since they may vary from how you like your podcast settings), but if you ever have to switch up production and change your podcast host or you have the opportunity to host a live radio show, Audition has your back.
- Steep Learning Curve: Not that it’s uncommon for software at this level, but there is a steep learning curve you have to find a way to navigate through. This is what happens at this level of audio engineering and editing. The more you use it, the faster you’ll learn, but even if you dedicate a good chunk of time to learning Adobe Audition, it can still be a little bit of a hassle to get in the groove of using it (and then updates roll out that can change the UI, and what gets pretty frustrating).
- No MIDI: Because Adobe Audition isn’t designed for music producers, you will find that there are some missing elements you’d normally find in music production software. It’s not a big deal because you know what you’re getting into, but being in one industry can lead to you wearing multiple hats, and it’s important to know that Adobe Audition won’t be there for you if you transcend into music production. It also means you can’t mix and master a theme song or tune for any podcast you’re working on without an external software.
- More Than You Need: On a podcasting level, Adobe Audition is like Logic Pro X for iOS users: it’s overkill. We’re not downplaying how important it is to master your podcast audio, but it’s not the most difficult task in the audio editing and engineering world. Adobe Audition tries to be a one-size-fits-all audio editing program, but because there’s no DAW specifically for podcasting, you have to navigate and put up with a lot of features and tools that you don’t need.
How Does it Work?
Adobe has a helpful tutorial specifically for Audition that really helps you hit the ground running. However, it gets pretty complex, because they have an online elearning library-style series of videos. It can be a bit daunting, so let’s explain how it works right here instead.
Record your podcast through Adobe Audition for the best results. This ensures you align all of your settings with new recordings each time. If you don’t know what your ideal settings are yet, that’s okay; it’s something you’ll find out when you begin editing your first podcast, so don’t worry about it now.
Once you’re done recording your podcast, the media files will appear in Adobe Audition. They’ll be saved in a folder made by Adobe on your PC, so everything should be in one bin.
Drag your audio clips into the timeline and trim them as you see fit. Their UI changes from time to time, so that’s a little tricky to nail down, but once it’s in the timeline you’re already halfway done. Recording and editing your podcast in Audition can be as simple as using a basic video editing software.
How to Make Podcast on Audition
Once you have your media in Audition and drag it into the timeline, it’s time to actually make this raw media into a podcast. Let’s walk you through it.
- Go through your audio and use fades to help equalize louder points in your audio. If someone is at the tail-end of their conversation in an interview scenario, for example, and the interviewer begins talking and overlaps the last few words that the interviewee is saying, you can apply fade to the interviewee’s sound so that it fades out slowly and softly without sounding too abrupt or loud.
- Use folders to keep track of comping. Comping is when you choose the best sections of different audio tracks to use together. Remember, just because it was recorded doesn’t mean it has to go into the final cut. Think of comping as the same editing methodology that people apply when they turn something into a trailer.
- Apply some EQ. Let’s say you have three guests, they all have the same microphones, and each mic has the same settings. That’s great; you did the pre-work. One of those guests is bound to be closer to the microphone than another, or talk louder, or have a much more booming laughter. Those peaks in the audio can be a real pain for the listener, so apply some EQ to help bring down those peaks without interrupting the sound.
How Much Does it Cost?
Adobe Audition is relatively inexpensive for how high-end it is. It’s only $31.49 per month if you use a basic subscription model, but if you want to pay annually, it’s $20.99 per month.
It’s a SaaS, or software as a service, so there’s no option to buy a full license and own a copy of the software like many other Adobe products. You’re stuck in the subsscription loop.
Pro Tips for Using Audition
Before you head out, let’s leave with you some higher level knowledge so that you can get started without worrying about that initial learning curve quite so much.
- Use a feature called “Spectral Control” to help with noise reduction. It does most of the work for you, so you aren’t skimming through your audio clips.
- Study the hotkeys like you have a test coming up. They’re invaluable and make your workflow incredibly fast.
- You can import a video and work on the audio from the clip.
- FX Rack is a feature that allows you to batch multiple files at the same time. If you want to break up your recording into multiple episodes, this is how you do it.
Master Audition in No Time
Audition has a learning curve, but it’s not as steep as some people make it out to be. If you haven’t used Audition in the past, it can be daunting, but don’t worry.
Once you get over the initial hump, you’ll be able to toy around with the settings and master Audition in no time. It’s never been easier to get started than it is right now.