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     Home »  Doctor Who: Podshock »  Podcasting Setup
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    Podcasting Setup Views: 7777
     Wednesday, March 28 2007 @ 07:30 AM EDT
    So what would you guys recommend for somebody like myself, who has no interest in doing a Podcast of my own but would like to start submitting audio comments or reviews on a regular basis? I'm guessing at the very least a half decent mic but which one and what software should I use to record it? I'd also like to drop audio in from what I am reviewing so do I need a mixer or can I get a software based mixer or would that all be done via the package I'm using to record it all? I'm using a PC BTW.

    Finally, are there any online guides anybody can recommend on doing this kind of thing or is it just a case of trial and error?

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     Thursday, March 29 2007 @ 09:24 AM EDT
    [Quote  by:  Louis]

    Cool! I've only used it once so far at this point... So I hope it proves to be a good purchase decision myself. So far, so good. It took some fiddling with it all to get the jest of how it all works as the manual is helpful only to a certain extent.

    Cheers,
    Louis


    There innovations at the listenning end at well! Big Grin

    Now that 'very short distance wireless' is now legal in the UK I've bought a little 'Wireless Link' gadget that allows you to use any sort of MP3 player (or WMA or Apple audio) on your car radio.

    You plug it into the headphone socket of your player and pick one of about four radio frequencies - which you also tune your radio into - and it plays through your car speakers!

    The wireless link is very low power and can run off batteries or from your car power plug - the 'radio' range is only about 30 or 40 cm (2 feet)

    The radio only shows the radio frequency not what track you are playing.

    Here's a picture in my car - as my MP3 player is also my camera - the Samsung NV3.

    I'm holding it for the photo but it just sits at the side of the dash on the move.



    EDIT I forgot to mention - of course I'm listenning to Podshock 70!
    Cheers, daveac

    daveac on blip.tv, TalkShoe, iTunes, LiveVideo, uStream, GE, Sci-Fi, DWO, DS & WTA, Dave C on WLP, cooperda on AVF, dac100 on YouTube & PB, dac on Tiscali
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     Thursday, March 29 2007 @ 09:47 AM EDT
    Hmmmmm - interesting, i wouldn't have had you down as a 'Ka' driver Dave! Smile

    I had one of those wireless links and founf the quality to be fairly poor which ever frequency I selected. Frown

    As I've got an iPod and a Kenwood car radio I decided to get a cable so the iPod can be connected via the CD Multi-changer socket and controled from the headunit.

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     Thursday, March 29 2007 @ 10:11 AM EDT
    [Quote  by:  capricorn1] Hmmmmm - interesting, i wouldn't have had you down as a 'Ka' driver Dave! Smile

    I had one of those wireless links and founf the quality to be fairly poor which ever frequency I selected. Frown

    As I've got an iPod and a Kenwood car radio I decided to get a cable so the iPod can be connected via the CD Multi-changer socket and controled from the headunit.


    Yes - and a bright yellow one as well - Sunny - like my disposition.

    The sound is mostly OK - and the car speakers add a lot of bass.

    I could put the podcasts onto CD - but my car cd player doesn't play MP3 CDs so I could only get up to 80 minutes as a 'wav' file.

    Cheers, daveac

    daveac on blip.tv, TalkShoe, iTunes, LiveVideo, uStream, GE, Sci-Fi, DWO, DS & WTA, Dave C on WLP, cooperda on AVF, dac100 on YouTube & PB, dac on Tiscali
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     Sunday, April 15 2007 @ 04:28 PM EDT
    Hey Louis,

    On the subject of living mixing on the MultiMix that we were talking about during the post-show on 15 April

    OPTION 1
    It would appear that page 21 of the MultiMix reference manual is maybe a good place to start. I think that grey-shaded box in the bottom right contains relevant information.

    The 2-Track area of the console, in the extreme upper right of the unit, is where audio coming from the computer is routed automatically over FireWire. I think you would have to then use RCA plugs, and an RCA-to-stereo-mini-jack adaptor (or, if there is such a thing RCA-to-optical converter), to then run a cable from 2-Track OUT to line in (or optical in) on the Mac. Then you'd have to set the audio preferences (probably on both Skype and the system pref pane), to accept audio not from the MultiMix, but rather the standard Built-In Audio-In (or optical in, if that's how you're running it).

    [If they don't make an RCA-to-optical converter, I"m pretty sure you'd have to run an RCA from the Mixer to a receiver input line that also had an optical out port, then run from the receiver optical out to the Mac's optical in.]

    I'm pretty sure that would work, and would probably be the cheapest way to go. At a minimum, all that would require would be some simple RCA cable and a converter to a stereo mini jack (about $5 at Radio Shack).

    OPTION 2
    However, I gather the preferred option is to use the MAIN MIX jacks, sorta in the center-bottom of the patch pay. You'd then have to run 1/4-inch-plugged cables from MAIN MIX OUT into your Mac, again requiring some sort of converter on the Mac side to get it to fit into the LINE IN jack on the Mac. Then, if you wanna do all this without the use of a stereo receiver) you'd switch over your Audio pref pane was set so that input was LINE IN rather than the MultiMix. The Main Mix knob would then come into play as would the 2TRK TO MIX switch. Thus set, you would then be able to enjoy output from across all 8 channels, including audio coming into the mixer via the Firewire connection.

    Then, change the Mac's audio pref pane such that AUDIO OUT gets routed to the MultiMix. Finally, use the Audio Midi Setup utility program such that the output is running through the MultiMix, and that should be it. (When I change the Audio Midi Setup this way now, without any of the cables running as described above, the clips are definitely playing through MultiMix, according to the LED lights on the Main Mix part of the board, but I can't hear them because I don't have it correctly wired yet.)

    I could be totally off base, but that's sorta what I'm gettin' from the manual.

    "I think of myself as ambitious in casting terms, and I know that Bonnie [Langford] has the potential to make the part totally unirritating . . ." JNT, 1986
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     Monday, April 16 2007 @ 12:46 AM EDT


    Hey Darth,

    Thanks for the run down. Yeah, I think what you explained would probably do the trick... the only caveat is that it is defeating the all digital mix by having to go through the analog outs back into the computer. The key is to keep everything digital otherwise it could get noisy.

    I haven't had any time to play around with it since we recorded the live show earlier (yesterday by the time you are probably reading this), but in the past was able to directly mix the audio from the computer via FireWire into the mix and record the mix directly into a track in GarageBand. So I thought I would have been able to do the same using Skype, but it seems that Skype is grabbing only one channel off the mixer (my mic)... and not the mixed output. Again I need to play around with it more and see if I can get it to work. It may need a piece of software such as SoundFlower on the Mac to make it work. I had in the past resisted using SoundFlower because of possible conflicts I heard now and then that it may cause. But if it allows me to use the mixer to input audio to Soundflower (I am not sure if it does) and then I can choose Soundflower as the audio source from within Skype, it should get the full mix if SoundFlower handles and allows me to choose the tracks. This could bypass the limitations that Skype seems to have when choosing audio sources, it may also eliminate the problem I have with distorted audio when I try to send the audio out from Skype to the mixer so I can monitor the audio from the mixer instead of the computer.

    So when I have the time and energy, I suppose I should give it a try.

    Cheers,
    Louis

    ☛ Follow me on Twitter at http://twitter.com/LouisTrapani ♥ ♥
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     Monday, April 16 2007 @ 04:20 AM EDT
    [Quote  by:  capricorn1] So what would you guys recommend for somebody like myself, who has no interest in doing a Podcast of my own but would like to start submitting audio comments or reviews on a regular basis? I'm guessing at the very least a half decent mic but which one and what software should I use to record it? I'd also like to drop audio in from what I am reviewing so do I need a mixer or can I get a software based mixer or would that all be done via the package I'm using to record it all? I'm using a PC BTW.

    Finally, are there any online guides anybody can recommend on doing this kind of thing or is it just a case of trial and error?


    Bumping my own post - anybody got any ideas at all please?

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     Monday, April 16 2007 @ 10:35 AM EDT
    [Quote  by:  capricorn1] So what would you guys recommend for somebody like myself, who has no interest in doing a Podcast of my own but would like to start submitting audio comments or reviews on a regular basis? I'm guessing at the very least a half decent mic but which one and what software should I use to record it? I'd also like to drop audio in from what I am reviewing so do I need a mixer or can I get a software based mixer or would that all be done via the package I'm using to record it all? I'm using a PC BTW.

    Finally, are there any online guides anybody can recommend on doing this kind of thing or is it just a case of trial and error?


    At the minimum, you would need a microphone such as a USB microphone at least. You can get a better one, though you will need an audio interface (something that will accept XLR microphone cables and then convert the audio to digital and input into your computer (via USB or FireWire)). The audio interface can be part of a mixer, but you don't necessarily need a mixer. You can drop in audio clips and music in your software editing application. A free one on both Windows and Mac platforms is Audacity. I am sure there must be other choices on the Windows side either as freeware or shareware, but I am not familiar with them... of course, there are the commercial software packages, but I am not sure of what your budget is for this project.

    You could buy a package deal for about $150 (US) that will give you the microphone, interface, and software. Here is one from couple of retailers in the US:

    M-Audio Podcast Factory (MusiciansFriend)

    M-Audio Podcast Factory (BSW)

    Of course, you are not limited to pre-bundled packages out there, you can pick and choose what you want individually.

    Cheers,
    Louis

    ☛ Follow me on Twitter at http://twitter.com/LouisTrapani ♥ ♥
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     Tuesday, April 17 2007 @ 10:02 AM EDT
    Louis, ran across this program for equalizing the audio across a sound file.
    It seems to work very well & its free.
    http://www.gigavox.com/levelator/

    Ron

    The Levelator... software that runs on Windows or OS X (universal binary) that adjusts the audio levels within your podcast or other audio file for variations from one speaker to the next, for example. It's not a compressor, normalizer or limiter although it contains all three. It's much more than those tools, and it's much simpler to use. The UI is dirt-simple: Drag-and-drop any WAV or AIFF file onto The Leveler's application window, and a few moments later you'll find a new version which just sounds better.

    http://members.cox.net/rengobnor/ ..... Yahoo messenger -- rengob_nor
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     Tuesday, April 17 2007 @ 11:29 AM EDT


    Thanks Ron.

    I downloaded it. I am sure it will come in handy. Thanks so much. I was not aware of it.

    Cheers,
    Louis

    ☛ Follow me on Twitter at http://twitter.com/LouisTrapani ♥ ♥
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     Tuesday, April 17 2007 @ 02:54 PM EDT
    Be careful with the Levelator, though, Louis. It's explicitly not meant to be used on music, and throwing music into the mix kinda throws it off. When I tried it on my latest Diaries to iron out one or two spots of high volume distortion, it distorted in the other direction (left/right), sort of as if the act of pressing down on the top had made the excesses squeeze out the sides. It also somewhat compromised the effects I'd put on clips I intentionally wanted to be louder and sharper than my own voice.

    I'm not saying the results were un-listenable, but rather that it just traded one or two brief moments of error for an overall feeling of vague distortion. As the instructions state, it's not meant to be a "finishing step", or a regular part of constructing a podcast, but merely a trouble shooter for specific problems.

    It'd probably be great for TalkCasts, where any other editing method would be extremely painstaking. It'd probably also be good where a single element, such as an interview, needed ironing out. But the instructions do advise against, for example, taking a studio recorded bit and a remotely edited bit, puttin' 'em together, then runnin' the Levelator across the whole lot. If you do that you're compromising the quality of the studio bit by making it "average out" with the remote recording. Instead, probably best to run each component part through the Levelator, then drop the newly-Levelated bits back into GarageBand, and manually adjust the volume of the constituent clips.

    "I think of myself as ambitious in casting terms, and I know that Bonnie [Langford] has the potential to make the part totally unirritating . . ." JNT, 1986
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     Tuesday, April 17 2007 @ 03:57 PM EDT
    [Quote  by:  DarthSkeptical] Be careful with the Levelator, though, Louis. It's explicitly not meant to be used on music, and throwing music into the mix kinda throws it off. ...


    Yeah, I haven't had time to test it out on anything yet. But I was only going to use it for spoken audio such as old interview recordings where the audio is uneven and/or unbalanced. Whereas instead of going in to it manually and wrestling with it, I would give this a try to see if it could simplified by just running it through this utility.

    I appreciate the heads up on it.

    Cheers,
    Louis

    ☛ Follow me on Twitter at http://twitter.com/LouisTrapani ♥ ♥
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     Tuesday, April 24 2007 @ 10:04 PM EDT
    Well, Louis, no one locally seems to have the kinda cables I need, so it turns out I won't be able to test a hardware solution for you using just the Alesis for a little bit of time, yet. However, following on from the discussion here I was able to effect a software solution that at least got an event played in Quicktime pushed to Skype. Unfortunately, I wouldn't say that I yet have a really practical grasp of it to the extent that I could give you full instructions. I only know that I've had a qualified success in a way that didn't require any recabling at all. I think the solution of using Soundflower has been presented to you before, but now I can at least confirm to you that looking at this solution a little harder will probably yield the results you want on Skype.

    "I think of myself as ambitious in casting terms, and I know that Bonnie [Langford] has the potential to make the part totally unirritating . . ." JNT, 1986
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     Wednesday, April 25 2007 @ 06:02 AM EDT
    Louis. I left you a couple of voice messages on the Skype in-box. I think the first was sort of a misfire, because the evaluation copy of Audio Hijack Pro slips in static after 10 minutes of monitoring. Hopefully, though, you will have been able to hear something on that final voice mail message. If you did get my voice, a clip from The Big Lebowski and some music that sounded like the Doctor Who theme as arranged by Monty Norman, then we have a workable solution, at least until I can get the right cables delivered here. If It all sounded promising then I can give you the details of how I did it (which are substantially different than the ones in the linked webpage mentioned in my last post). Course if you didn't get anything useful, then it'd be good to know that too Smile

    "I think of myself as ambitious in casting terms, and I know that Bonnie [Langford] has the potential to make the part totally unirritating . . ." JNT, 1986
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     Wednesday, April 25 2007 @ 09:39 AM EDT

    Gotta love voodoo electronics... Wink

    Daleks don't accept apologies! YOU WILL BE EXTERMINATED!
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