[bct] Re: Microphones for podcasts

  • From: "Jamie Pauls" <jamiepauls@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: <blindcooltech@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Tue, 15 Nov 2005 16:50:48 -0600

I'd love that recording.

-----Original Message-----
From: blindcooltech-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
[mailto:blindcooltech-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of Neal Ewers
Sent: Tuesday, November 15, 2005 10:30 AM
To: blindcooltech@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [bct] Re: Microphones for podcasts

Jamie, Michael Karino did an excerpt on one of Larry's podcasts using an
Altech Lansing headset microphone combination model 302.  I liked them
enough to go buy one.  It is a headphone that fits over the back of your
head rather than over the top.  I frankly don't like the way it sits on my
head, but the sound is about as good as you can get for such a price.  It is
surprisingly reasonably quiet, and because the microphone will be close to
your mouth, you will be causing the actual noticeable noise of the mike to
be a good deal less than the specs suggest.  I believe it was around $39 or
even less at best buy.

I believe I still have the recording of the 3 or 4 minute insert that he did
on the podcast.  I could send it to you if you like.  One thing to know if
you want the file.  He refers to it as model 302I, but the I is normally not
listed in search engines and the one he and I both have we bought by simply
asking for the 302 model.


-----Original Message-----
From: blindcooltech-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
[mailto:blindcooltech-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of Jamie Pauls
Sent: Tuesday, November 15, 2005 9:01 AM
To: blindcooltech@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [bct] Re: Microphones for podcasts

If you listen to my DS-2 review, you will hear the hum that plagues me using
the free mic that came with an old computer. I recorded in Studio Recorder
and normalized with Sound Forge. I think that may have been a bad decision.
I used to own a $16 headset mic from Wal-Mart that cut down on the hum some.
What would be a good, low-budget mic that could move me into some quieter
recordings. I am plugging directly into the mic jack of my computer, not
using a mixer. Thanks for all recommendations. BTW, I am needing this
exclusively for speech. 

-----Original Message-----
From: blindcooltech-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
[mailto:blindcooltech-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of Neal Ewers
Sent: Monday, November 14, 2005 8:21 PM
To: blindcooltech@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [bct] Re: Microphones for podcasts

Hello Bill, you said, "I don't mean to but in where I haven't been asked."
Well, consider yourself asked.  After all, we're all friends here.

My answer to you is that you use whatever mike or mikes you are happy with.
There are at least two things to consider.

1.  The sound quality of a mike is a very personal thing, just like the
sound of speakers.  No two people may like the same speakers or mikes, but
they are both right because what they want them for is for themselves and
they are the only judge.  So if you have a noisy mike whose sound you really
like, you will find some situations to make it work.

2.  How much noise they are willing to tolerate is also important.
Again, that is a personal thing and a budget consideration also.  The more
noise you add to the signal, the less you will hear the inherent noise of
the mike.  So, if you speak really loudly and are very close to the mike,
you can get by with a rather noisy mike.  If you speak very softly as some
of the narrators I record and if they are not right up on the mike, the
signal relative to the noise of the mike will be much lower and the mike
noise will be more audible.  Close miking a guitar would perhaps allow you
to use a more noisy mike because again you are probably quite close to the
sound source.  In any case, it's simply how much noise you want to hear.  I
happen to prefer as quiet a mike as I can get.  That is, however, only one
person's opinion and nothing anyone else has to strive for.  Just consider
me a bit whacky when it comes to recording.  OK, just how whacky am I.  I
have mikes that sell for well over $3000, but these are used to record
professional CDs for symphony orchestras, choirs, and chamber groups in very
very quiet halls.  Now, you know just how whacky I am.  So, feel free to
take what I say with a grain of salt.


-----Original Message-----
From: blindcooltech-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
[mailto:blindcooltech-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of Bill Belew
Sent: Monday, November 14, 2005 6:43 PM
To: blindcooltech@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [bct] Re: Microphones for podcasts

Hi Neal and Dan,

I don't mean to but in where I haven't been asked, but it seems to me that
you're both talking overkill for what is essentially voice quality recording
situations.  Do you really think that someone needs to spend $400 or $800 to
get decent high quality voice recordings?
I've got two Sony condenser mics that I've seen credited as being used
extensively in recording studios for acoustic guitar and they cost $120 a
piece.  I also have a single-point stereo mic that cost $85 that is a little
noisy, but more than adequate for very good voice recording.  I bought both
the lapel and binaural mics from Sound Professionals for $69 for each pair
and they make very quiet clear recordings.  

Bill Belew

-----Original Message-----
From: blindcooltech-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
[mailto:blindcooltech-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of Neal Ewers
Sent: Monday, November 14, 2005 2:33 PM
To: blindcooltech@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [bct] Re: Microphones for podcasts

Dan, comments in your message below marked with ***

-----Original Message-----
From: blindcooltech-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
[mailto:blindcooltech-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of The Scarlet Wombat
Sent: Monday, November 14, 2005 3:50 PM
To: blindcooltech@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [bct] Microphones for podcasts

Thanks Neal, that was informative.  I heard a very nice sounding Heil pr

40, but the s/n ratio is only 55 db, insufficient.  I know one can get away
with a minimal setup for podcasting, but I am working to make a living from
being a financial planner and I want my casts to be of as fine a quality as
I can produce without going to a studio.  The sd 722 may be overkill, but
there does not seem to be much inbetween the Iriver kind of device and the

*** You're right about there not being much that is good in between.
Of course, this will change, but if the new recorders are anything like the
Microtrack and all it's problems, well, we don't need to go there.

As for microphones, I like the idea of the figure eight, though a cardioid
might be fine as I do not need to hear myself, just the client responses.
"They need to be clear, because some people mutter and I must hear numbers
clearly enough to transcribe them later, so what might be thought of as
transcription quality is insufficient.  I thought of the lapel mics, but
that might intimidate people.  Is the quality of the boundary microphones
good?  I've never heard one used, so have no comparison experience.
*** The quality of boundary mikes can be good , but their signal to noise is
often not as good as other mikes.

A microphone that could switch between a cardioid and figure 8 would meet a
couple of purposes, wonder if anything is available that I can afford.
*** My guess is here that you're talking at least $800 for a multi position
mike.  AKG makes one in around that price range.  Actually, it is much more,
but I have a few good sources for getting deals.
However, there is one scenario I left out.  One can get some rather nice
single point stereo mikes for about $400  The Rode nt4 is one of the better
ones for that price and it is very quiet relative to its competition. Then
there is also an Audio Technica AT-822 which is quite good.  Not quite as
quiet as the Rode but its capsules are angled at 110 degrees instead of 90
degrees giving one a bit more stereo separation. With either of these mikes,
you could either face the microphone toward your clients and pick them all
up while still being able to hear yourself well enough even though you are
behind the microphone. Or, you could face the mike so that one channel is
picking you up while the other is picking up the clients.

 I do not need the head mounted mic as my plans don't include discussing

finance while dodging 18 wheelers.
Larry has my admiration for being able to walk and dictate coherently at

the same time. [grin]
*** I agree about Larry, and I wouldn't be surprised to hear that he is
driving the 18 wheeler.  but I wasn't suggesting you were going to be
walking around.  I do know that some people who stand in front of a
microphone and speak are surprised to find that the next time they come back
to the same position to continue the recording, they are just a little
closer or further away.  Of course, there is more than one way to deal with
this, but I only mentioned the head worn mikes as one possible way.  One can
always set up the mike and make sure one is the same distance from it as one
was before.  It is simply something to be aware of when recording separate
segments of a longer recording.

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