Streamlined Podcasts

6 Ways to Improve Your Podcast’s Audio Quality Right Now!

It’s no secret that audio is the bread and butter for every podcaster. It’s one of those things that when you do it right, not many can tell, but do it wrong? There goes your audience! In fact, studies show that audio quality can even impact your credibility


An experiment showed an audience two clips of scientific research (one with good audio, one with poor audio). 


They found that the scientists in the poor audio clip lost all credibility. The common thread amongst the participants was that “The talk was worse, the speaker less intelligent, and the research less important.”


What does this mean for your Podcast…? 



To put it bluntly, it doesn’t matter how good your content is; with bad audio quality, your message will, flat out, not be well received. 


Let’s fix that!


Here are 6 easy ways to improve your audio quality to sound more professional and command attention.




1. Where You Record Matters… Find the Right Space


I once heard a podcast where I couldn’t shake the sense that it sounded like someone was talking into a tin can. It got so bad that I reached out to the audio editor to fix it. His response? There was nothing he could do because the podcasters recorded IN THEIR CAR! 


Nothing wrong with humble beginnings, but where you record matters. The good thing is, you don’t have to get an expensive, fancy setup to get decent sound quality for your audio. 


First off, find a furnished room with decent space, and set up your mic away from walls, windows, and mirrors.


It’s best to get yourself into a carpeted room in front of a bookcase and furniture to absorb “room reflections,” it will make your voice sound more stable. (If you shoot video podcasts, this is an excellent excuse to get something nice in your background).


2. Mind Your Surroundings


Make sure to keep everything quiet! Nothing worse than having your guest overshadowed by the neighbor’s dog who thought NOW would be the best time to end your whole career. 


While you’re at it, be mindful of the little things; your computer’s fan, clinking glasses, the air conditioning, your phone notifications, anything that will cause those annoying micro distractions. 


If you’re serious about getting into the podcasting game, it may be time to upgrade your area. Even still, it doesn’t have to be fancy. It can be as simple as fitting your room with soundproofing/acoustic foam.



3. Let’s Talk Mics


Since the mic is akin to the podcaster’s sword in battle, it’s no wonder people tend to get stuck in the “analysis paralysis” phase of buying one. 


Hopefully, this puts your mind at ease. The best mic for your podcast… is the one you buy!


That’s it. It doesn’t take an expensive, award-winning mic to get you the audio you need. Ideally, anywhere around the $200 range or lower will work just fine. 


If you’re still stuck on where to get started, take a look at Podboxx. Podboxx offers literally EVERYTHING you need to get your show up and running, from a mic, boom stand, pop filter, and headphones – to an intro and outro, cover art, podcast launch guide, and more for WAY under market pricing. 


4. Play Around with Your Mic Placement


I say “play” because, honestly, you need to make the process fun so it doesn’t feel so tedious. 


That said, everyone has different mics and different rooms. You need to find what works best for you. 


Now that you have your mic, here’s a tip to get you started: try an indirect mic placement.


That means putting your mic off-center, away from the direct line of your voice. This technique can help take the edge off of any “plosives” (those hard B and P popping sounds from your mouth). 


Another thing podcasters need to be mindful of is “finding their sweet spot.” In this case, that’s how far your mouth is from the mic. For podcasts, you’re going to want to get yourself 2 to 3 inches from your mic. 



5. Use Headphones 


If possible, make sure that BOTH you and your guest wear headphones to listen to each other’s audio. 


For starters, it will improve your mic technique. Since you’re listening to the audio coming from your mic directly, it will make it much easier to adjust and find that sweet spot I mentioned earlier. 


Mics are super sensitive. Getting that automatic feedback will also help you hear and silence room noises the mic might be picking up. 


On the more technical side, having both you and the guest use headphones while recording will eliminate unwanted “ducking.” Ducking is when your audio lowers itself or “ducks” under whoever is speaking over you to compensate for the busy audio channel. Later in post-production, this issue will be tough to resolve by editing alone.


In essence, using headphones will save you a lot of trouble and make you sound more professional. 


Trust me, the last thing you want is to have to ring up your guest asking, “Hey, um, yeah, remember that episode we recorded that you took time off for…? Can we try that over again?” 



6. Use Split Tracks for You and Your Guest 


It can’t be overstated how beneficial using two different tracks is when editing the final audio. 


With so many interviews being done remotely, you want the most control possible when recording. 

Using separate tracks, you can easily silence coughs, dog barks, gulping, and even your mother-in-law asking when you’ll be getting a “real job” when you or your guest has a turn on the mic.

(Cutting out unwanted noises from a separate track)

When you use only one, your audio is susceptible to all these sounds, and since there is only one track to edit, it becomes much harder to take those spikes out. In most cases, you’ll be stuck with them since it would mean having to affect the main audio.

(Audio spike on a single track)

If you’re recording on Zoom and wondering how to split tracks, try following this guide on how to separate audio tracks


If you happen to be recording in-house, then you’ll have to split stereo channels on whatever platform you’re using to record, which should be a quick google search away.


Final Word of Advice


Good audio is key to building a following, but the temptation is to think, “it’s ok, the audio editor will fix everything.” 


While yes, the audio editor will clean, improve, and mix your recording, at the end of the day, they can’t optimize it. Only you can. 


Just like any product, it’s up to you to give the best possible raw materials to get something professional and polished back. The better audio you give to your editor, the better audio you’ll receive as a result. 

Have more questions? 


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