Podcast Microphones

Shure SM58

First of all, the Shure SM58 has a great reputation. I’ve bought a couple of these babies at different points in my life. Also, the mic is designed to reduce incoming sound from the sides and rear, thus giving you a strong vocal presence and enhancing your voice when speaking straight into the capsule. You can see this mic being used in podcast studios and on stage. It’s a hand held mic, so you can record your pod while kicking back on the couch or you can mount it to a mic stand. This mic costs about $100, which is well worth every penny. Finally, if you don’t end up recording with it, you can use it as a weapon and bonk home intruders in the head. This thing is solid, built like a tank!

Shure SM7B

The Shure SM7B  is a dynamic mic that has a clean and honest sound. Therefore, it’ll represent how your voice ACTUALLY sounds with maybe a slight boost in the low end. It’s great for broadcast. It has a built-in windscreen which acts as a pop filter and helps reduce explosive breath sounds.  At  $399 it might be a little bit pricey for the beginner, but man, you will not regret buying this mic. Most noteworthy, you can throw it on a desktop mic stand and feel like you’re in an actual radio station.


Audio Interface

Focusrite Scarlett 2i2

Focusrite is one of the top names in the audio recording, and also why I’m recommending the Scarlett 2i2. I used one of these for over a year and it never let me down. As a result, I’m a huge fan of audio interfaces as opposed to mixers. They have better preamps, better conversion and are easier to use. So, what does that mean for a newbie? Better, cleaner, louder, and also crisper sound!

Plug this into your computer via USB or thunderbolt and the computer will automatically recognize it as your audio engine. Hence, when you open up your recording software you won’t have to switch anything in the audio preferences. You’ll be able to arm a track and hit record. A solid deal for a dual channel interface. If you need 4 channels of simultaneous audio, they have a version that runs about $100 more. Both well worth it!


DAW (Digital Audio Workstation)

Avid Pro Tools

Pro Tools is the best DAW (Digital Audio Workstation) on the market, period, end of story. If you’re serious about recording/editing I highly recommend learning this software. Pro Tools First is the free version of Pro Tools. It has a few limitations, but none of them relate to podcasting. Those restrictions are more for musicians who need high track counts and fancy plug-ins. The keyboard shortcuts are laid out in a way that makes sense. Within 5 minutes of reading the manual or watching YouTube you’ll be able to create a couple tracks and start recording.

One really cool feature is “Avid Cloud Collaboration.” With this you can upload your files to a cloud sever and easily share the session with your other hosts and/or podcast squad. This is a great feature for sharing editing duties and getting feedback without having to keep bouncing files and emailing them back and forth. Pro Tools really is the industry standard and can be seen in studios across the world. Don’t let that intimidate you. I’ve used a lot of editing software and this by far is the most intuitive and easy to learn.