The Process

This is probably more for me than anyone else, but I figure why not – here’s how I put our various shows together.

I’m got a 17″ MacBookPro running OSX 10.6 that we record everything on. We record and edit all of it in GarageBand.

In terms of microphones, for KUEC we use a Blu Snowball, and for In The Evening I use a C-Media headset.[1]

All pictures are taken with my iPhone 3GS.

The process for KUEC goes something like this : we set up the Mac and Snowball in the kitchen, push the record button, and let it run. As you may have noticed, it can be a bit “raw” because of this, but that (we hope) is part of it’s charm. When we’re done recording, we retire to the bedroom with my laptop, and listen to the show – usually to find the “money quote” for the episode title, and to make sure there aren’t any serious technical issues with the raw recording.[2] While we listen, I pull the photos off of my phone, pick the best “group shot” for the libsyn post, and upload all of them to flickr.

When we’re done listening, we update the metadata on the file, export it to mp3, and upload everything to libsyn.

ITE is a little more involved. I spend a few hours (no, really) going through my iTunes library, piecing together the playlist, usually in blocks of 3-5 songs. I then sit down in GarageBand and record the intro, the outro, and the bumps between songs. I export those to the playlist in iTunes, make sure everything is in the proper order, and then I burn the whole kit to a CD.

Why a CD? Two reasons – the first is because some of the songs are in formats I can’t easily convert directly to mp3[3]. The other is so that I can do a single rip to the 128Kbit format the stream requires, with the MP3 tags populated. After it’s been re-ripped at the proper bitrate, I use the program EasyTag to verify the files names & tags are correct, before sending them off to the stream for eventual play.

Once it’s on the stream server, I sit back down in GarageBand and do the podcast mix. Same songs, same order, but I can do a bit cleaner job on the actual transitions that the system that does the stream. Once that mix is complete, I update the metadata and export to MP3. The final step is to post it to the ITE site proper, which uses PodPress for the handling of the media files and the matching posts.

And now I have been a good tech and documented my processes so if I’m ever hit by a truck, someone else can duplicate it.

And you guys can tell me where I can be a bit more efficient in the various processes.

[1] Given the sensitivity of the Snowball and the acoustics in the office, it’s not practical to use when recording the voice-overs for the music show. I’ll probably experiment more with the Snowball as things mature – it is an AWESOME device, and I feel bad using a $25 headset when I have the Snowball….
[2] This is why we were surprised when someone complained about “clicking” on a couple of shows. Still not sure what was up with that, but I’m hoping it’s gone now after some adjustments.
[3] Some legacy stuff I bought when the ONLY iTunes option was protected m4p files, which iTunes absolutely refuses to convert to mp3 without this intermediate step.

About Kevin Sonney

Kevin Sonney - who, contrary to popular opinion was NOT raised by wolves - grew up in central North Carolina. He fell into the technology field by accident in 1991, when he gave up the wild and crazy lifestyle of an on-air AM radio DJ to become a mundane technical support monkey. The technology industry has never really recovered from this. Kevin has worked for such names as IBM, Red Hat, webslingerZ, and Lulu Technologies (we won't mention the ones that didn't survive the experience). He currently works as a Linux Administrator for Apptio. In his spare time he rescues stray animals and plays video games with his two sons. His wife, we're sad to say, helps him get past the really hard bits. Kevin is still not very mundane, he just got better at hiding it.
This entry was posted in In The Evening, KUEC, Personal, Podcasting. Bookmark the permalink.