Great podcasts are not only about podcasting skills, they are also highly reliant on good sound quality and the right recording equipment. This includes everything from capturing the best mic placement to choosing the right microphone brand and model.
Let’s look at some podcast recording tips to improve the experience.
High Quality Podcast Equipment
If you’re planning to produce podcast episodes, you might think that you can just plug a mic into your computer and start talking.
However, If you want to make sure that your voice sounds good for your podcast listeners, you’ll need some professional and clear audio equipment.
First, you’ll need a microphone. There are a lot of different kinds, and each one works better for certain types of podcasts.
A microphone stand is also an essential tool that will help you record great audio. If using an external microphone, you’ll also need a way to connect it to your computer – either through USB or a specialized sound card.
Moreover, if you plan to interview someone, one very valuable podcast recording tip is to consider getting a lavalier mic. These mics clip around the neck like a tie (also see, ‘Lapel Mic For Podcast‘).
They’re great because they capture sound very close to where you speak, so you get natural sounding voices without having to worry about background noises.
For other types of recording, you’ll need a stand or mount for your microphone. A tripod mount lets you adjust the angle of your camera while keeping the mic level and steady.
Some mounts even include a screen to keep out unwanted ambient noise.
You’ll also need a pop filter for good audio. This also helps eliminate background noise such as popping noises and crackling caused by electrical interference (also see, ‘Blue Yeti Pop Filter‘).
You’ll also need headphones. Your listeners will hear everything much clearer if you use headphones rather than speakers (also see, ‘Why Do Podcasters Wear Headphones‘).
And finally, you’ll need recording software. There are a few available, but the most popular and user-friendly is Adobe Audition. It’s easy to use, has powerful features, and can handle virtually any type of audio file (also see, ‘Best Adobe Audition Courses‘).
Once you have all of these pieces in place, you’re ready to start recording your podcast.
Now let’s talk about audio editing software. You’ll probably want to do most of your editing in Audacity, a free program that’s available for Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux (also see, ‘Adobe Audition vs Audacity‘).
Audacity supports lots of different file formats, including MP3, Ogg Vorbis, AAC, FLAC, WAV, and more.
Creating a good podcast episode can be challenging. You must know how to speak clearly and confidently, whether it’s reading off a script or speaking extemporaneously.
But there are some things you can do to make sure you deliver your best performance every time.
Rather than go straight into your recording without doing anything to prepare yourself, take a moment to warm up your voice.
Practicing your script or reading will help you sound more confident and comfortable while you record a podcast.
The last thing you want is to stumble over your words while trying to record your show. If you don’t properly warm up, you could end up sounding nervous and stuttering.
This won’t look good on camera and could even lead to a poor audio quality. So as the old saying goes practice makes perfect.
Record In A Quiet Environment
Some people record podcast audio in large rooms where there are lots of distractions like fans, lights, and other equipment.
Those kinds of environments actually amplify background noise and echo making it harder to hear what you’re trying to capture.
To avoid this problem, try recording in a smaller, quieter space (also see, ‘How To Soundproof A Room For Podcasting‘). You’ll find that you’ll have a great sounding podcast because the sound quality improves dramatically.
You might even want to consider moving your entire setup into another room altogether. If you don’t already have one, you can rent a dedicated home studio for $100-$150 per day (also see, ‘How To Create A Podcasting Studio‘).
This way you’ll have total control over the acoustics of your recording space and eliminate any unwanted distractions.
One of the most underrated podcast tips to establish high quality audio is about microphone placement.
Placing your microphone or recording device so it’s parallel to your face helps ensure that you’re getting the best quality audio possible. If you don’t do this, your voice might end up sounding muffled and flat.
Next, sit a couple of feet away from the camera, and place the filter between the microphone and your mouth. This reduces background noise and ensures that your voice gets picked up clearly.
Finally, think about your mouth and nose’s distance from the microphone. Change your body position appropriately to achieve the right volume level. If you’re too close to the microphone your voice will be too loud.
1. Control The Breath
We all know it’s important to breathe properly, but did you know how much of an impact it can make on your recordings? If you want to record cleanly without having to worry about breathing too loudly, here are some tips to help you out.
2. Sit Up Straight
If you’re sitting down, keep your spine nice and tall. This helps prevent unwanted noise from entering your microphone. If you’re standing, lean slightly forward. This will help you maintain balance and control your breath easier.
3. Take Smaller Breaths
When you inhale, don’t let yourself fill up completely. Instead, take small, slow breaths. Try counting slowly to four as you do. You might find that you end up taking fewer breaths overall, which will give you cleaner sounding audio.
4. Move Your Mouth Away From the Mic When Taking Big Inhales
Don’t just stick your entire head under your mic stand. Doing so will force air into your lungs. Instead, pull your head back slightly and place your lips over the mic.
This way, you’ll be able to control the volume of the sound coming out of your mouth.
Finally, practice exhaling. Exhale slowly through your mouth, allowing the air to flow smoothly out of your body. Don’t force anything out; just relax and allow the air to exit naturally.
Fix Sound Issues
It’s always a good idea to run a recording to test audio before you actually start recording your show.
This way, you’ll know exactly what you need to do to ensure your guests’ voices are clear. You’ll also save yourself some headaches down the road.
Identifying and resolving audio issues from the start makes things easier later on. Plus, it’s good practice so you can have a professional sounding podcast.
If you’ve been recording for hours without interruption, you probably won’t notice that you’ve got bad audio until much later, such as during the post production and podcast editing process.
The worst case scenario is recording an hour-long episode only to find there is a bigger issue you can’t fix on the audio files.
Don’t let that happen. Make sure you address every potential issue before you begin recording.
It may not always be possible to get perfect audio quality when recording podcasts. That’s why it’s important that you have a backup plan ready at all times.
Having a few simple tricks up your sleeve will help you deal with any problems that arise.