I think I’ve officially demoed every piece of podcast hardware and software we could possibly try in the last few weeks. I finally settled on a nice set of mics and a swell mixer. At that point I figured everything would be easy.
Not so much.
My MobilePre USB shifted between sounding dim and muddy or incredibly noisy with constant clipping. My direct line-in for my laptop sound card hissed and popped to the point that it sounded like there was a hair dryer running somewhere in the room. Then, depending on which software program I used, I could hear songs and sound clips, but they weren’t recording. I even pulled out a Mac mini and tried Garageband. It sounded great, with almost no noise, but when I turned on monitoring so that I could hear myself in my headphones I was greeted with two robotic voices just slightly behind me. Latency sucks. The operative word is “maddening”.
So last night, after a stream of obscenties unheard since the last episode of Dawn and Drew, I went for simplicity. The monitor slider for the MobilePre kept rapidly moving from -6 to +12 and back to -6, filling my ears with alternating silence and feedback. CastBlaster showed a signal nearly reaching the red when I was dead silent and still in my chair. So I unplugged everything and plugged the board straight into the line-in of the laptop and fired up Audacity.
Silence. Golden silence. No more white noise in the background (okay… less white noise). Simple recording controls. Sure, I lost the ability to play external sound clips and record them directly, but that’s easily remedied, and a few minutes of editing creates a much better sounding end product.
Simple. Straightforward. And it’s even wife approved!
Look out world. Test episode beta 01 coming soon. Not that we’re likely to publish it…