Technical Details

What's under the hood of the Podcast?

This is for all the geeks out there who are interested in the nuts and bolts behind the podcast. For the rest of you, move along!

I begin by recording the audio for each podcast in my personal studio. I use the following pieces of equipment:

microphone: Audio Technica AT 4050

Audio Interface: Metric Halo ULN2

Recording Software: Logic Pro 7.2 from Apple, running on an Intel iMac.

Once I've recorded the audio, I bounce it to MP3 using the fantastic LAME encoder, and upload it to the server. I use Transmit as my FTP client; you can construct automated sync commands with Transmit, so all of the files are uploaded from the local folder with a single click, without having to launch the application. Very cool.

The website runs on WordPress software. All code tweaks are done using TextMate, the best little text editor ever built. I post each podcast using Ecto, because it has pre-built templates that include the audio file links, all technorati tags, and can parse WordPress's future post date option. I can record 10 chapters at once, and post them to future dates for publishing.

The website is running a cluster of servers. The website itself is hosted by Slicehost, using Debian and Apache2. The podcast files are served from multiple mirror sites, including servers from archive.org and dreamhost.com.

The podcast feed is managed by Feedburner.

Did I leave anything out?

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One thought on “Technical Details

  1. You have a good voice and clean, clear audio; the sound has a refreshing quality.

    What is your working distance to the microphone? Do you use a mesh pop filter?
    If so, what is the distance between the filter and the microphone and the distance between the filter and your lips?

    What is the position and angle of the microphone relative to your mouth? (Examples:
    => capsule centered and at eye-level, pointing downward
    => capsure centered at mouth-level, pointing straight toward mouth
    => capsule at 45 degrees, at mouth-level, pointing toward mouth
    (Here a photograph would be worth a thousand words.)

    How do you handle room reverberation, echoes, etc.? Do you use a blanket or a square of sound-absorbing foam behind you? or a box of foam surrounding the microphone?

    Are you standing or seated while you record?

    Are you using compression? If so, what is the ratio?

    Thanks.

    What are the parameters you give to LAME?

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