As of episode 4 of the Freestyle Podcast, I feel like I’m getting a better feel for volume levels. I got the levels really nice on Ep. 4, but I had to really spend a lot of time adjusting it in GarageBand. The trick is getting my voice, on my mic and mixing board, and the other guys on Skype, all talking at about the same volume.
But while adjusting the volume took a lot of time, it was worth the effort. Much better sounding podcast.
I also began using a new piece of software on the final edit of the audio file — Levelator. It requires converting the file to WAV format (which I did in Wondershare Converter Pro), then running it through Levelator, which does a nice job of cleaning up the sound, eliminating the spots where it gets way to loud. Actually, it makes the audio sound better all the way around. Read the description. Now, if the levels are REALLY horrible it won’t totally fix it, but it does help for a well-edited audio file.
I also got a USB microphone for recording voiceovers and other solo podcasting stuff. I have been doing the end of the podcast using the built-in mic on my MacBook (I always forget to do it while I have all my stuff set up) which sounds like shit. So I purchased this Audio Technica At2020usb Cardioid Studio Condenser Microphone System with USB.
I did some research and this thing got good reviews. I wanted a mic that is compact enough to take on road trips, but something that will sound good. I’m very happy with this little baby. Just plug into your USB port, turn on GarageBand or other software, and you’re ready to go. It draws power from the USB bus, so no batteries or external power supply needed! It comes with long USB cable, a nice zippered carrying bad, and this killer little tripod mount, so you don’t have to buy any additional stuff to use it. Lastly, it is very solidly built. Metal body, metal tripod. Really nice little mic. Anyway, I highly recommend this microphone for podcasting, voiceovers, etc., in situations where you don’t need a mixer or multiple microphones.