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Old October 10th, 2007, 05:49 PM   #1
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Need advice on multi micrphone podcast recording on a Mac.

Hi guys. I'm looking to start doing a podcast with 4 people, and so am looking for a cost effective ($150-200) way to record the audio on my iMac (or MacBook).

I've been thinking about multiple USB headsets, cheap wired lavs into a mixer with USB out or desk mics, both 1 each or one in the middle of the table.

Does anyone have any advice or suggestions on equipment to get. The idea of having headsets seems to be good for sound isolation but I'm not convinced it won't get uncomfortable to wear as well as confusing having both the voice in the room from whoever is talking and the voice through the headset.

The cheap wired lavs into mixer sounds OK, but due to budget I wonder how cheap I can get and not ruin the sound.

The desk mic slapped in the middle sounds cheap and easy but reverb would kill it I'd imagine.

So, any advice, especially from those who run podcasts would be much appreciated.

Cheers
Aaron
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Old October 11th, 2007, 11:15 AM   #2
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I'll throw a caution about multiple live lavs on people seated close together mixed to one channel. Everybody will be in everybody's mic, leading to phasing issues (audible comb filtering, tinny sound). This is independent of the quality of the lavs. If you have someone listening on headphones and mixing, multiple mics can work well.

If it were me with a group around a table I might try a boundary mic on the table first. This will be very sensitive to noise on the table (tapping, papers rustling, etc.)

The classic approach is probably 2-4 cardoid or supercardoid mics on desk stands that are close to the people, with someone doing some mixing up and down.

I have no idea what 4 usb headsets would sound like or work like with your recording application.

IMHO, this is one of those situations where you can't get cheap, easy and high quality - you're going to have to compromise some on at least one of them.
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Old October 11th, 2007, 01:41 PM   #3
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Convince the other three members to invest in their own mics? B.Y.O.S = Bring Your Own Slobber.

Then use that $200 to get your own mic and a clean-sounding used analog mixer with at least four mic inputs and line-level outputs. Plug the line-out into your Mac's line-in.
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Old October 11th, 2007, 03:24 PM   #4
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Thanks guys.

Andrew, no way they'll fork for their own mics unfortunately, although I managed to find someone who will loan me their 4 input mixer for the podcasts which is great news!

Seth, can't get a person to mix either, but thanks for all the options. I think I might have to just pick an option I think will work and give it a go and hope it works.

Cheers
Aaron
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Last edited by Aaron Koolen; October 11th, 2007 at 08:05 PM.
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Old October 11th, 2007, 07:07 PM   #5
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If you can afford $200, try the Zoom H2.
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