Recording podcasts

A few people have asked how I go about recording my podcast. So I don’t need to keep repeating myself, I thought it worthwhile to write it up here.

Skype

So, the format of my podcast is usual an interview, or really just a chat, between myself and one other person. It’s done using Skype,  just a normal free call using the basic service. It’s not perfect but is usually good enough.

When recording, I wear a pair of Logitech UE 4000 headphones which feature a microphone on them, which cuts down on too much background noise, and using headphones means there’s no echo too.

Call Recorder

To record the conversation I use a Mac app called Call Recorder. This really does exactly what it says – you start the Skype call, then when you’re ready, hit record and it starts to record both ends of the conversation.

The file is saved as a .mov on your desktop, and Call Recorder comes with another app to convert this file to mp3.

If you’re on Windows, then you could try Evaer instead of Call Recorder.

Garageband

I tend not to bother editing the podcast, unless something catastrophic happens during recording like Skype dropping out or similar. I use Garageband for this, which is a free bit of software on the Mac.

If you’re on another platform then the open source Audacity would be a good place to start.

Libsyn

Once the file is ready to go live, I upload it to Libsyn, which hosts the audio file and also creates an RSS feed for the podcast with the appropriate enclosure. Libsyn also submits the podcast to iTunes, helps you add an image to feed and so on, to make things look at least reasonably professional.

It’s pretty cheap – the basic tier is just a few pounds a month, although I pay a bit extra for more storage and some stats.

One thing I have found with uploading the file is that rather than using Libsyn’s browser based uploader, it’s best to save your audio file in Dropbox first and then use Libsyn’s tool to transfer that file into Libsyn. Just seems to work better and have less chance of failing.

WordPress

I then promote the podcast by creating a post on my blog here in WordPress. WordPress has an inbuilt audio player, so all I need to do is paste the URL to the audio file into my post, and WordPress does the rest for me.

I listen through the podcast and add links to the show notes as it plays, to help listeners find out more about what I am talking about with my guest.

Hope that’s useful! Any other podcasting tips?

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Dave Briggs

I'm an experienced senior manager in digital and ICT, looking for interim engagements to modernise technology teams to help organisations transform.

2 thoughts on “Recording podcasts”

  1. It’s always good to see how other people do these things and take notes. I’ve been using an iRig Mic to go with my HTC One, which has been of pretty good quality. Audacity has always worked a treat in terms of editing stuff, especially as we’ve been keeping things down to 3 minutes for use on Audioboo’s free service. I’ve learnt along the way to try not to edit too much though, you don’t want to make people sound inhuman.

    Keep up the good work – really enjoyed your podcast with Helen Reynolds!

    • Dyfrig

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