How to Record a Podcast – Ultimate Guide

January 5, 2023 by No Comments

I’m going to go over each step in this article for recording a podcast. Here’s a quick summary of how to record a podcast:

  1. What preparations must you make in order for the recording to go smoothly?
  2. What tools are required to record a show of excellent quality?
  3. What software programs are required to record audio?
  4. Done Recording: what do you need to do after Recording

Recording a podcast can be incredibly intimidating when you first begin. There’s a lot that goes into producing a high-caliber podcast, and while the pros make it look and sound effortless, recording a studio-quality episode can seem out of a beginner’s league.

In this easy guide, we’ll show you how to produce a podcast that does you justice. We walk you through every step so you can start recording like a pro in no time. Let’s jump right in.

Planning to Record a Podcast

It would be easy to skip over this section since you are eager to get started and are already familiar with the material. Why not just wing it?

Even though I prefer to fly by the seat of my pants, having an episode plan can really improve the quality of your show. Rest assured that it won’t consume your entire day. A little planning can go a long way.

Plan the Topic

What are you going to talk about first, please? If you choose the incorrect episode topic, your $500 Heil microphone and your professional-grade Zoom H6 recorder won’t matter a whit. The show won’t matter to the audience, regardless of the audio quality.

Decide who your ideal listener is and what matters to them most by doing some research. Then, for each episode, think:

  • What queries do your listeners have?
  • What issues are they dealing with?
  • What are they currently having trouble with?

You should focus on one of them for every episode.

How do you calculate that? traditional keyword research that is geared toward podcasting For a detailed list of resources that can help you locate numerous questions that you can respond to, see that article.

Additionally, if you enjoy keeping physical journals or notebooks, you might be interested in purchasing a copy of The Podcast Host Planner. This serves as a fantastic visual reminder of how seriously you take podcasting. This journal aids in your planning, from broad objectives to specific edit timetables.

Script the Episode

Scripting is a hotly contested subject. Should you be extremely detailed or could you be more casual and spontaneous? I provided some examples to address that in a lengthy article on how to script a podcast. But let’s talk about it briefly.

One the one hand, a script with lots of specifics can result in an episode that is really tight and valuable. It stops you from rambling and makes sure you cover everything you need to.

The only issue is that a thorough script can rob an episode of spontaneity and personality. To read a detailed script and still sound natural and conversational takes a lot of skill. But, it’s possible.

Furthermore, creating something this intricate obviously takes a lot of time.

A light script, on the other hand—basically just a list of bullet points—can give you enough direction without constraining you. It takes much less time to prepare and you can be more animated, natural, and personable.

However, a light-touch script has the disadvantage that it makes it much easier to get lost, forget things, and repeat yourself. Your episodes tend to be longer and the waffle factor rises sharply. That’s not necessarily a good thing…

Personality and practice are frequently the deciding factors. Until you feel more at ease speaking into the microphone, start with a detailed script. After that, gradually cut back on the detail until you strike a balance between the amount of time required, the advantages received, and the recording style.

What Podcast Equipment Do I Need to Record a Podcast?

Every podcaster has their own preferences, and you might already be clear on the type of equipment you prefer to use in your setup.

However, if you’re not quite sure what you need to record a podcast, get your starter-kit together and make sure to get your hands on the following:

Microphones for Podcast Recording

Microphones for Podcast Recording

It can be difficult to choose a podcasting microphone. It can be challenging to navigate all the available options because of the abundance of technical jargon that is used.

Just keep in mind that you ultimately need a microphone that works for you.

If you’re into the technical side of things, here are a couple of things you should consider before purchasing a microphone:

The Polar Pattern

The Polar Pickup Pattern reveals how much sound a microphone can pick up from each direction. It all revolves around something called “directionality.”

The best polar pattern for your setup will depend on what and where you’re recording, as well as how well-versed you are in using a microphone.

Cardioid microphones primarily pick up audio from the front, a little from the side, and very little from the back. As a result, they are excellent for settings with a lot of background noise.

Omnidirectional microphones capture sound from all angles. In a professional, sound-treated studio setup, this all-purpose microphone performs admirably. However, omnidirectional mics make it challenging to avoid recording unwanted background noise in home studios.

Dynamic Vs Condenser Mics

Dynamic and Condenser Mics capture sound in different ways and as a result, also have different characteristics:

Dynamic microphones reduce background noise, so they’re perfect for home studio setups where it may be more difficult to mitigate against unwanted sounds and distractions.

Condenser mics are highly sensitive and are able to record crisp and delicate sounds. However, as a result, they frequently pick up more background noise.

Dynamic microphones do not require a power source, whereas Condenser Mics do.

USB Vs XLR Microphones

A microphone can have various connections, including XLR and USB.

USB Microphones

Advantages:

  • Plug-in-and-record. It is very simple to use USB microphones because they don’t need an audio interface to function.
  • Portable. USB microphones are typically a more portable option because they don’t need a separate piece of equipment to function, making them ideal for traveling podcasters.
  • Affordable. The more affordable mic options are dominated by USB microphones.

Disadvantages:

  • Not easy to record with multiple participants in one place. Most computers only support one to two USB connections, making them unsuitable for multi-person podcasts.
  • XLR mics produce audio with a lower quality. The distinction itself, however, is not everything.
XLR Microphones

Advantages:

  • Higher sound-quality. The audio quality of the audio interface required to use XLR microphones is better than that of USB microphones.
  • More adjustability. You can live mix and adjust your audio as you record using the audio interface. . You have more control over live mixing and audio customization thanks to the audio interface.
  • More professional. An XLR microphone will typically be preferred by professional podcasters over a USB microphone.
  • Recording multiple participants is simple.

Disadvantages:

  • a sound interface is necessary. Your setup becomes less portable and costs more money as a result of this necessary addition.
  • Less budget-friendly. XLR microphones are frequently more expensive. Additionally, they aren’t always the most affordable choice due to the additional cost of an audio interface.

Podcast Recording Cameras

podcast

If you’re going to be recording a video podcast, it’s worth investing in an external camera. If you’re on a tight budget, you can stick with your computer’s built-in webcam or a cheap external webcam that plugs directly into it. There are many excellent cameras that will work if you’re willing to spend a little more. Again, a dedicated camera will make a significant improvement in video quality.

What to think about when choosing your podcast camera:

1. Resolution

Your video quality is entirely dependent on resolution. Your video will look better if it has a higher resolution. If you’ve ever watched a YouTube video, you’ve probably noticed that you can toggle between 720p and 1080p to change the video resolution/quality.

2. Frame Rate

how many pictures a camera takes every second. In general, there is no “best frame rate.” The maximum frame rates that cameras can capture are between 24 and 60 frames per second.

3. Budget

The type of camera you should consider will depend on your budget. An external webcam will work just fine for those on a tighter budget.

4. Portability

If you’re always moving, you should pick a camera that is small and light.

Headphones

For podcasting (and editing), headphones are a necessity. You can carefully monitor your audio and make any necessary adjustments if you wear them while recording.

Here’s what to think about when choosing the perfect pair for you:

1. Comfort

You’ll be using your headphones for hours at a time if you’re a serious podcaster. In order to maximize your productivity, you should look for a pair that is comfortable.

Look for headphones that are adjustable and lightweight with a good level of padding.

2. Budget

What kind of headphones you can purchase depends on how much money you have to spend. The decision will be much simpler if you know your budget before examining your options.

3. Sound Isolation

You want a pair of headphones that block out ambient noise that is irrelevant to you and your recording.

Top tip: avoid active sound-canceling headphones because these negatively affect the quality of the audio you hear.

4. Wired or wireless connectivity: Which is better?

Personal taste will ultimately determine this decision. Consider purchasing wireless Bluetooth headphones if you enjoy moving around and being active.

If you choose Bluetooth headphones, keep in mind that you will occasionally need to charge them.

5. Latency

Latency refers to the delay between when you press play to when you hear the audio. Since wireless Bluetooth headphones frequently have more latency than wired ones, this is more of a factor to take into account if you choose those.

6. Frequency Response

A pair of headphones’ frequency response demonstrates how well they can reproduce sounds at all frequency ranges. A frequency response range of 20–20,000 Hz is what you should be seeking in an ideal situation.

Podcast Recording Studio and Soundproofing

All content producers should have access to a high-quality recording studio in an ideal world. In fact, the majority don’t. Nevertheless, hold off on panicking just yet. The convenience of your own home can be transformed into a quality recording space.

To the greatest extent possible, choose a room with little background noise if you’re recording at home. A good place to start is by picking a space with as few walls that face the outside as possible. This will lessen the amount of background noise that enters from outside.

The most effective way to maintain and improve the quality of your audio is to soundproof and sound-treat your room.

Soundproofing is all about isolating your recording space from unwanted external noise.

By blocking off any air gaps in the space, installing carpets and rugs, and attaching sound-absorbing material or sound-blocking curtains to the walls, you can soundproof your home studio.

Sound Treating is about optimizing your recording environment to capture the best audio possible.

To make the most of your recording studio, spend money on diffusers, bass traps, and acoustic foam tiles.

What About My Podcast Recording Studio Or Environment?

You can use the best equipment and software available, but your podcast will sound bad if you’re using it in a subpar environment, which is a good question.

The good news is that setting up a podcast studio that sounds professional doesn’t have to be challenging or expensive. There are many different options available; see our complete guide there.

The way you use a mic also affects the sound quality of it, which is a final pointer on this front.

What Software Do I Need to Record a Podcast?

In order to record a podcast, you’ll need reliable recording software. The editing and recording suites may occasionally be combined into a single application.

If you’re making a podcast offline, you might be able to record your audio right into your editing program. To record your podcast, you must use a service like Riverside.fm if you’re doing so online.

Best Software to Record Your Podcast Offline

Garageband

Garageband

Advantages

  • Free with all Apple devices – great for small budgets.
  • intuitive user interface that is simple to use.
  • Advanced editing capabilities for free!

Disadvantages

  • Not accessible on Windows-based hardware.
  • excludes recordings of video.

Adobe Audition

Advantages

  • Comprehensive editing capabilities mean you have the creative freedom to do what you want to your podcast.
  • Batch processing that will speed up your workflow.
  • suitable for both Windows and Mac computers.

Disadvantages

  • geared toward business professionals. Thus, for the majority of podcasters, Adobe Audition’s features might be a little excessive.
  • Steep learning curve. Adobe Audition can be challenging for beginners to use due to its professional target audience.
  • video recordings are not allowed. For podcasters who make videos, this might be a deal-breaker.
  • Not as affordable. Adobe Audition may not be affordable for those with smaller budgets because it costs $20.99 per month.

Hindenburg Journalist

Advantages

  • Aimed at podcasters and broadcasters.
  • Uploads directly to major podcasting directories – a great time-saving feature.
  • suitable for both Windows and Mac.
  • Records uncompressed audio that preserve the quality of your recording.
  • Compatible with all audio file formats, so you can import recordings from everywhere and anywhere.

Disadvantages

  • Expensive. starting at $95 per month.
  • Beginners face a steep learning curve.
  • excludes recordings of motion pictures.
  • There aren’t as many editing options as with some rivals.

Best Remote and Online Podcast Recording Software

You can compare the top podcast recording programs in our comprehensive post to determine which is best for you.

Riverside, however, has everything you require if you’re looking to record remotely.

Riverside.fm

Riverside.fm exceeds expectations and knocks Zoom and Skype out of the park when it comes to recording a remote podcast. Here’s why:

  • Each participant is recorded locally in full HDso your podcast is not affected by weak or intermittent internet connection.
  • High-quality recordings at up to 4K video resolution with lossless file formats (WAV)to preserve the quality of your recording.
  • Progressive upload where Riverside.fm uploads your recording as you’re recording to save you time and keep your files secure.
  • Easy-to-use so the platform is simple to work with no matter your skill level.
  • Browser-based so there’s no need to download yet another application.
  • Integrated Media Board to add sound effects, music, video, and other media in your podcast live.
  • Affordable with a free plan and paid plans only starting at just $15/month.
  • Record on the go from your phone using The iOS and Android mobile apps for Riverside.
  • Livestream your podcast and simulcast to all major platforms.
  • Audience and Producer Mode so you can include your production team and a live audience, without accidentally recording them.
  • Magic Editor with all the tools you need to customize, fine-tune and polish your podcast with a few simple clicks.

Different Ways to Record a Podcast

The kind of setup you’re using will determine the best way to record a podcast. It’s possible that the procedure will differ slightly depending on whether you’re recording in a studio or with guests who are in different places.

Here are some different ways you can record a podcast:

  1. Record offline with your equipment and a digital audio workstation
  2. Record in different locations via remote recording or online calling software
  3. Record from your phone

Below, we’ll go into more detail about each of these.

How to Record a Podcast Interview Offline

In just 4 easy steps, you can easily record an offline podcast interview.

1. Find A Quiet Place.

To create a high-quality recording, consider your recording space. Your audio will likely be compromised if you are in an area with a lot of background noise or frequent disturbances.

Consider recording in a sound-treated or soundproofed space if you can. If not, record your voice as quietly as you can.

2. Prepare Your Podcasting Equipment

Your computer, headphones, microphone, and camera (plus your camera if you’re recording video) should all be ready to go for your podcasting setup. When recording high-quality audio, the location of your microphone (and your position in relation to it) are crucial.

In terms of mic positioning, try and place your microphone at least 6 – 8 inches from your mouth. Though keep in mind that different microphones have different requirements, so try a few different things to see what works best with yours.

If you have the money, think about getting a boom arm and a pop filter for your microphone.

3. Set Up Your Audio Software

Check that all of your microphones are connected properly, start your audio recording software, and perform an audio check. Also, a little warm-up is never a bad idea.

4. Start Recording!

Start recording once you’ve found a comfortable seat, then take in the scenery.

How to Record a Podcast Online from Different Locations (using Riverside.fm)

Why would you want to online record your podcast? Well, you may be surprised to find that remote podcast recording online affords you greater freedom and flexibilitywithout ever sacrificing quality. It gives you the freedom to record wherever and whenever, as well as the ability to include guests from anywhere in the world.

Follow these steps to record a podcast remotely online with Riverside:

1. Log in to Riverside.fm

You can use Riverside.fm on both Windows and Mac computers because it is a browser-based service. If you’re recording on the go with your phone, you can also log in using Riverside’s mobile app.

2. Construct a recording studio.

Create a new studio in your dashboard. Choose your recording style and give your studio a name. You can decide to set up a studio for later use or to start recording right away.

At this point, if your guests and production crew are scheduled in advance, you may also send out invitations.

3. Enter your recording studio

You will be directed to the Green Room before entering the studio so you can choose and test your podcast recording gear there. Select whether you are using headphones or not, and then when you are all set up press “Join Studio”.

4. Start recording!

Once everyone is content and prepared to begin, press the big red record button to begin recording the podcast.

You can share your screen and add live effects using the Media Board.

Stop recording when you’re finished, and then proceed with exporting and post-production after waiting for all of your files to finish uploading.

How to Record a Podcast With a Phone

podcast

The process of creating a podcast on your phone is very similar to one of the methods mentioned above. You have a wide variety of mobile recording apps to pick from, and some, like Riverside, let you record remotely with users.

Finding the best podcast recording app for your setup is advised, and we still advise using an external phone microphone when recording.

Both iPhones and Android devices can record podcasts if you’re using Riverside. Simply adhere to the procedures outlined above to record a podcast remotely with Riverside. The only difference is that to create your studio, invite guests, and begin recording, you’ll need to download the Riverside mobile app.

Podcast Recording Tips

1. Invest in your equipment & software

Whenever possible, spend money on dependable, top-notch hardware and software. The overall quality of your recording can be greatly improved by using even inexpensive podcasting equipment. Your podcast’s production value will be immediately increased, which will increase listener appeal.

2. Record in a quiet environment (and encourage your guests to do the same)

Although there are many things we can do to make our recordings as good as possible, background noise and interruptions are things we have no control over. It is therefore best practice to record in a space that is as quiet and free of distractions as possible. It is beneficial to spend money on supplemental tools that help maintain the quality of your audio, such as pop filters and mic stands. Don’t be hesitant to build your own home studio. The outcomes might astound you.

3. Don’t sweat the mistakes

You almost certainly will make mistakes, so don’t let them bother you. The likelihood is that you can gloss over a relatively minor error and your listeners won’t even notice. If you’re a stickler for detail, leave yourself an audio cue (such as a clap) so that when you listen to the recording again during post-production, you can pinpoint the mistake.

4. Wear headphones to record your podcast

Wearing headphones while recording is strongly advised if you want to capture high-quality audio, which may surprise you. You can monitor audio quality and change the placement of your own microphone while wearing headphones.

5. Prep your guest beforehand

Make sure to explain to your guests exactly what is expected of them, the format of the episode, and any questions they might have. This will ensure that they are ready and also help them to relax if they are feeling anxious.

6. Record your remote podcast using Riverside.fm

While you can attempt to enhance the recording quality of your guests while they are present, it is not an exact science. You have the best chance, no matter where your guest is, of getting a studio-caliber recording from them when you use Riverside.fm.

You won’t need to worry about dodgy internet connection because Riverside.fm records each participant locally. In other words, your guest will be as presentable as they can be wherever they are.

What to Do When You’re Done Recording

The work starts after the enjoyable part is over. You can trim, edit, cut, and play with your recording during post-production to get the exact sound you want for your podcast.

That being said, you don’t have to ‘edit’ your podcast. Some podcasters prefer to upload their recording straight away without all the bells and whistles.

Editing Your Podcast

Podcast Editing Software

You can fiddle around with your podcast recording using software like GarageBand, Adobe Audition, or Hindenburg Journalist. Rearrange segments, add effects, enhance or alter the audio, and incorporate additional sound files.

Discover where to find the best royalty-free music for your podcast with our guide. Adding music, such as intros, outros, and transitions, is a great way to instantly improve the production quality of your podcast.‍

Automate Editing Using Riverside’s Magic Editor

Riverside.fm’s Magic Editor makes editing your recording for publication quick and simple.

The Magic Editor improves the quality of your audio by removing background noise and normalizing gain (which means leveling out all the audio so there’s no volume discrepancy).

For video, the Magic Editor makes your content look better by making sure it fills the screen.

You can even customize your podcast with a logo and frame to really make your podcast branding pop throughout.

Additionally, you can incorporate media into your live recording using the Riverside.fm Media Board, so you don’t have to worry about doing this in post-production. This means that you can still use transitions, outros, and intros.

Create Your Podcast Cover Art

This is the time to start using your creative juices, if you haven’t already. Cover art is a crucial component of your podcast marketing, despite the fact that you might think you’ve already put in the grueling work.

Make cover art that embodies the tone and style of your podcast. Although it’s not all about judging a book by its cover, first impressions make a big difference. Your podcast’s cover art might persuade potential listeners to give it a try.

You can either create your cover art yourself or hire a freelancer or agency.

Produce Your Show Notes and Podcast Transcription

The episode transcription and show notes are crucial finishing touches for any podcast.

Show notes give your listeners a summary of your episode and what they should expect.

Podcast transcripts make your content more accessible and open to new audiences. They also aid in the more efficient marketing, repurposing, and promotion of your podcast.

For your information, Riverside.fm’s Pro and Enterprise plans offer unlimited automatic transcription.

Upload Your Show to a Podcast Hosting Software (A Place to Store the Audio Files You Create)

Use Riverside.fm’s Magic Editor to edit your podcast, then export your file for distribution. Once your file is prepared, you must upload it to a podcast host like Buzzsprout, Spreaker, or Anchor.

Submit Your Podcast to Directories (Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Etc.)

You’ll need to distribute your recording to all of the main listening platforms after you’ve uploaded it to your podcast host. Many hosts will automatically submit your content to services like Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Overcast, etc., so you don’t have to worry about it.

Conclusion: Record Your Own Podcast

Check to see if your podcast host has this feature, and if not, make sure to manually submit your podcast to any platforms they are missing.

Make sure you think about where you record.

Your recording space must be audio-friendly if you’re setting up a home studio.

That entails avoiding spaces with reflective elements like windows, tiles, or high ceilings.

It won’t cost you a lot of money to do this correctly. Perhaps all you need are a few thick curtains or some couch cushions.

But if you want your podcast to be a success, it’s crucial to work on enhancing the sound quality.