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How To Make NPR Quality Podcasts

Nov 23rd, 2013 | By | Category: How to Podcast, Podcasting Hardware

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Mark Sullivan offers his take on how to make an NPR quality podcast over at Tech Hive:

Podcasting shares a lot in common with broadcasting. Content is obviously the most important element, but people won’t listen to the content if the sound quality is bad. And they’ll listen longer and more often if the sound quality is really good.

I went on a quest to find out if it’s possible to achieve NPR-level sound quality in a podcast you make at home. Working under the premise that no one piece of gear could cost more than $1000, I set about trying to assemble the equipment I thought would give me the best chance of sounding like such names as Bob Edwards or Corey Flintoff.

His focus is on three tools: mic, preamp and analog-to-digital audio interface.

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With Nielsen Twitter TV Rating, Everybody Wins – Except Twitter Users

Dec 17th, 2012 | By | Category: Citizen Media

twitterNielsen and Twitter today announced a deal to create a Nielsen Twitter TV Rating system for the US market.

Under the agreement, Nielsen and Twitter are creating a ‘standard metric’ to measure ‘the reach of the TV conversation on Twitter.’

On the surface, everybody wins:

  • Nielsen gets to control a new Rating standard;
  • Television gets a standard yardstick for social media engagement, making it easier to focus their social media investment;
  • Ad dudes’ get a lot of new work; and
  • Twitter gets increased focus & investment from broadcast media.

The losers in the deal, though, appear to be Twitter users.

Read more »

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New Google Maps App A Huge Win For Apple, iPhone Users

Dec 13th, 2012 | By | Category: Apple iPad, iPhone

google-maps-iphoneGoogle – as you probably already know – today introduced a new Google Maps app for the iPhone.

Google says:

People around the world have been asking for Google Maps on iPhone. Starting today, we’re pleased to announce that Google Maps is here—rolling out across the world in the Apple App Store. It’s designed from the ground up to combine the comprehensiveness and accuracy of Google Maps with an interface that makes finding what you’re looking for faster and easier.

While Google is putting a positive spin on this, it’s actually a huge win for Apple and iPhone users, and a validation of their app strategy.

As usual, John Gruber is one of the few tech analysts looking at the real implications of the news:

This iOS 6 mapping saga has been a source of tremendous controversy, but here we are three months after iOS 6 was released and iPhone users now have a better Google Maps experience than they did when Google was providing the back-end data for the built-in Maps app. It all worked out.

Before Apple introduced its new Maps app, Maps on the iPhone was becoming second rate, with features that many users were asking for missing in action.

Now Google has to compete for users on the iPhone, has to ask for permission to use your location and has to deliver a great mapping app for people to even bother with using it.

Expect more jockeying on this – but Apple’s strategy successfully neutralized a potential threat from Google.

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Microsoft Hopes Best Buy Can Succeed Where Microsoft Store Failed, Expands Availability Of Surface Tablet

Dec 12th, 2012 | By | Category: Computer Hardware, iPods & Portable Media Players, Podcasting Hardware

microsoft-surface-rtMicrosoft has announced that it is dramatically expanding the availability of the Surface RT tablet, effective immediately.

Neowin reports that the Surface RT tablets are already available at Best Buy’s site.

“Our plan has been to expand the retail presence for Surface after the first of the year. Based on interest from retailers, we are giving them the option to carry Surface with Windows RT even earlier,” said Steve Schueler, corporate vice president, Microsoft Retail Sales and Marketing.

Microsoft’s Windows 8 and Surface tablets have met with lukewarm reception, at best. Surface RT sales have additionally been hampered by limited availability.

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SonicMaps Puts Your Podcasts On The Map

Nov 12th, 2012 | By | Category: Audio Podcasting, Podcasting, Podcasting Software

SonicMaps is a new Locative Audio (GPS AudioTour) platform that’s designed to be a complete solution for sound geolocation.

With SonicMaps, you can create an audio guide to a popular place, a located music composition/playlist, audio games (e.g. Treasure Hunt), located poetry, or simply send geolocated audio messages to your friends.

Using the 3D audio engine option, sounds can be fixed to real world positions, so they are consistently perceived into space while rotating your device (panning) and levels are attenuated according to distance (intensity).

To use SonicMaps, you:

  • Upload your audio files to your favourite hosting service.
  • Go to the desired location and start placing sounds around using the SonicMaps Editor iOS application.
  • Then, you can publish and share your project with other users who will be able to experience your composition as they walk on the selected location.

SonicMaps uses “on-site” editing, avoiding common inaccuracy problems in similar web-based services due to high buildings, maps displacements, etc.

Read more »

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Audio For Video

Nov 12th, 2012 | By | Category: How to Podcast, Podcasting Hardware, Video, Video Podcasts

The most noticeable difference between professional and amateur videos often isn’t the quality of the video, but the quality of the audio.

This video series, by Sennheiser, takes a look at recording audio for video. It covers microphones for video recording, wireless mics, handheld mics and more.

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I-Jingle Pro Turns Your iPad Into A Jingle + Sample Cart Player

Jun 18th, 2012 | By | Category: Audio Podcasting, Podcasting, Podcasting Software

I-Jingle Pro is an app that turns your iPad into a professional jingle/sample cart player.

Easy to use controls let you either play up to 8 jingles simultaneously, cross fade 2 jingles, fade out the first jingle while starting the next or simply stop the first and start the next. So called 2nd touch settings allow you to stop, fade out or re-start a jingle.

At any moment you have 35 jingles on screen and scrolling up and down through the jingles or quickly switching between presets allows you to access up to 300 jingles without leaving the main screen.

I-Jingle Pro is $24.99 in the App Store.

Note: I-Jingle Pro is not recommended for the iPad 1.

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Is Podcasting Apple’s Instagram Opportunity?

Jun 15th, 2012 | By | Category: Audio Podcasting

AllThingsD’s Peter Kafka reports today Apple is planning to move podcasting out of iTunes and into a new dedicated application.

He writes:

Why have podcasts disappeared from the new version of iTunes that Apple started showing to developers this week?

Because Apple plans on giving the recordings their own bit of digital turf.

People familiar with Apple’s plans tell me that when its new iOS 6 software becomes widely available this fall, podcasts will have their own app, where users will be able to discover, download and play them on mobile devices. Users who access iTunes via laptop and desktop machines will still find them in that version of iTunes, though.

This could be simple housecleaning. iTunes has become a bloated jack-of-all-trades app, and it could use simplification.

The success of iOS devices has shifted Apple’s priorities, too. iPhones and iPads are no longer primarily peripherals to computers, but are Apple’s most important platform.

There may be much more to the news, though. Instagram’s billion dollar sale to Facebook highlighted that mobile devices are rapidly becoming the default platforms for content creation.

With Apple’s existing strengths in mobile audio and video content creation, they have a huge opportunity in rethinking their approach to podcasting.

Think podcasting is getting demoted? Or do you think Apple see a bigger opportunity for mobile media sharing?

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iRig Mic Cast Video Demo

Jun 4th, 2012 | By | Category: Audio Podcasting, Podcasting, Podcasting Hardware
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This is a demo video for the iRig Mic Cast, whic is a $40 portable micrphone for the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad.

The iRig Mic Cast is designed for recording podcasts, interviews, lectures, voice memos and speeches. It features a unidirectional pickup pattern that minimizes background noise, making it ideal for single-source audio recording.

The video demonstrates the difference between using the iPhone’s built-in microphone and the iRig Mic Cast, in a couple of noisy locations.

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How To Make Enhanced Podcasts With GarageBand

May 31st, 2012 | By | Category: How to Podcast, Podcasting
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This tutorial takes a look at how to make enhanced podcasts with GarageBand.

An ‘enhanced podcast’ is an audio podcast that can also contain images, chapter markers, hyperlinks, and artwork, synced to the audio. When an enhanced podcast is played on a compatible device, the additional information will be displayed in time with the audio podcast.

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