ep60: The Podcaster Toolkit Show

**Behind The Scenes of PodcasterToolkit.com
What is PodcasterToolkit.com? **
Why did I build it?
What steps were required to go from bucket list to live on the web.
Today is a little less of how to and more of an insider’s look at my process.

The Podcaster’s Toolkit (The Podcast Version :D):

If you have favorite resource or tool you love and you want to share on the podcast, please send it to me at mike@mikemurphy.co and I’ll add it to the Kit.

If you are a vendor or product creator and would like me to test out a product or service, please let me know and I would be happy to test and share so long as I think it will benefit my listeners.

In this week’s The Podcaster’s Toolkit: The Zoom H4N Pro. An audio classic!

The Zoom H4N Pro is a Handy Portable Recorder.
You can plug 4 XLR microphones into it and it has a built in stereo microphone on top if you do not have a microphone to plug in.
You record on to a memory card just like your camera.
What is cool about the Zoom products is you can use it as an audio interface too.

I highly recommend this product with high confidence.

Episode 60: The PodcasterToolkit Show:

Quick History Lesson & Personal Moment so today makes sense:

My why for starting Mike Murphy Unplugged podcast was to share my knowledge of tools and gear and resources and help other one man bands and creative entrepreneurs figure things out right along side of me.

PodcasterToolkit.com is the website that was in my head when I started my online business and podcast and looking back, what I wanted my first weblog to be. A well-organized website of carefully curated tools and resources that I enjoy and think others will find valuable. This website is a one stop shop for one man bands to learn what they need to know to get stuff done. No fluff all good stuff.

The Big Picture Plan of PodcasterToolkit.com

The Blog will be loaded with very instructional how-to and practical articles about podcasting and related areas.
Tip:Repurpose everything. My podcast scripts will be converted to blog entries.

The Shop: will be all podcasting and content creation gear with direct links to Amazon.

The Tools: will be all of the business and productivity and software tools I use and love like Freshbooks and Scrivener and Elegant Themes and Lynda.com for learning. If I use it, expect it in the toolkit.
Tutorials & Videos: Building a video library on YouTube is another major priority and I’m chipping away at it.

Steps to Launch:

Planning: What is the purpose of your website and what do you want it to do?

Web Hosting: BlueHost Because I already have an account I can create unlimited number of sites under one account so that was easy.

Theme: Extra Theme which is very similar to Divi by Elegant Themes only it is more magazine style and is built for lots of content. Podcaster Toolkit is content heavy and Extra is just what the doctor ordered.

Domain Name: Go Daddy I am embarrassed to admit just how many domains I own.

Tip 1: Buy different variations of the domain. I own podcastertoolkit.com and podcasterstoolkit.com in case people spell it wrong.

Tip 2: Forward domains you are not using to your active sites in case someone does a search at least the unused domain will serve some purpose.

Create a Folder to have one place to add the theme files and all of my assets which I hadn’t even created yet.

Big Tip: Stop over thinking and start. Baby steps. Get your idea and simple plan and start plowing through. You have more work than you know. It does no good to just think and plan forever. You have to start.

Branding & Logos Be swift and don’t get hung up here. Type logos are fine.

For Photos Management: I use Adobe Lightroom & I love Collections.

To organize all of the gear and tools Home Inventory from the Apple App Store

MONEY

Affiliate Marketing (See episode 44) will be my main monetization plan

Affiliate Partnerships:
Amazon (the main one)
FreshBooks
Elegant Themes
BlueHost

The Content.
Don’t wait until it’s all done. Just hit publish and flush it out as you go.

The takeaways I want you to get from today is:

Do what makes you happy (The new site makes me happY)
To get started on a new website or idea, start.

HOUSEKEEPING

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Music: Life of Riley & Wallpaper (incompetech.com)

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ep59: The Web Design Show

ep59: The Web Design Show

How to install a new WordPress website or blog using Divi or Extra Theme in under 10 steps.

The Podcaster’s Toolkit:

If you have favorite resource or tool you love and you want to share on the podcast, please send it to me at mike@mikemurphy.co and I’ll add it to the Kit.

If you are a vendor or product creator and would like me to test out a product or service, please let me know and I would be happy to test and share so long as I think it will benefit my listeners.

In this week’s The Podcaster’s Toolkit:

FreshBooks. Freshbooks is a web-based accounting and invoicing tool that I use for MikeMurphy.co.
You can invoice clients and vendors, track expenses, track time, create projects, take payments for anything and create reports to monitor the financial health of your business and to send to your bookkeeper or accountant.

Freshbooks New Pricing:

Lite: $15/month
Plus: $25/month
Premium: $50/month

300x250

The Web Design Show:

What steps did I take and will you take to launch PodcasterToolkit.com, new WordPress site from ground zero?

“To begin, begin”
-William Wordsworth

Step 1: Buy A Domain Name

You need a domain name like podcastertoolkit.com.
Buy one at GoDaddy.com and pay $8.99 for a new domain or url.

Step 2: Sign up for Web Hosting

I use: BlueHost.com Use my affiliate link and get it for $3.95/month
Hostgator.com is also used by a lot of people.

Step 3: Buy a Premium Theme.

I highly recommend paying $69/year for Elegant Themes. It’s all I use.

Divi 3.0

 

Mike Murphy.co is built on Divi.
PodcasterToolkit.com is on Extra.

OTHER PODCAST WEBSITE OPTIONS:
Appendipity Themes
Podcast Websites.com

Step 4. Organize Master Folder

Put all assets and logos and theme files in one place on your hard drive.

Step 5: Change Nameservers:

Sign into BlueHost
Assign your domain name first.
Copy Nameservers (ns1.bluehost.com and ns2.bluehost.com)

Sign in to GoDaddy
Delete the GoDaddy Nameservers and paste the name servers from BlueHost.
They say 24 hours before it works, but it usually only takes 5–10.

Back to BlueHost.

Step 6: Install WordPress:

In BlueHost:
Confirm the domain has been verified.

To Install:
One-click install for WordPress or

In this step: CREATE A USER NAME YOU WANT IN THIS STEP AS IT IS HARD TO CHANGE IN WORDPRESS

Step 7: Sign in to your site

By adding /wp-admin after the .com

Ex. Yoursite.com/wp-admin

Step 8. Install Divi or Extra Theme.

In WordPress go to Appearance and Themes and
Add New
Upload the Zip file you have in your Master Project folder from Step 1

HOUSEKEEPING

Subscribe To Podcast

Leave a ratings & review (if you already did, thanks)

Buy My New eBook (How To Podcast on Wordpress.com)

Ask Mike Anything

Music: Life of Riley & Wallpaper (incompetech.com)

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Mike Murphy

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ep58: The Audio 101 Show (Part 2)

Part 1 (Episode 57): Pre-production & Recording. What are some of the more common audio terms podcasters need to know?

Part 2 (Episode 58): Editing & Post-Production
What do you do after you record your podcast?

In this episode I simplify the some of the glossary terms and language of recording and editing podcasts.

Editing:

The goal of editing is to shape the story, clean up the gaps and mistakes and produce a naturally sounding podcast.

Fixing ums and aahs and deleting gaps in the audio, etc

Start at the left and work your way to the end.
Easy.

Don’t overthink it and try to clean too much.

Post-Processing: Plugins & Filters & Effects

1. Noise Reduction:

I usually do this right after editing.

Tip: Record 3- 5 secs or so of quiet room noise before you record anything so you have good ambient noise for the noise reduction plugins can sample from.

Tool: Noise Reduction in The Effects Menu (up top)
1. Capture Noise Print (the room noise at beginning)
2. Noise Reduction (Process)

Setting I often use for Noise Reduction: 60%

How does noise reduction work?
Noise reduction filters simply measure the ambient room noise and scans your entire recording and removes the bad noise. It makes sense to do this early in the editing because if you raise up the levels before you do noise reduction, you also raise the levels of the bad noise and we don’t want that.
Use it sparingly as aggressive noise reduction will make your voice sound very weird.

noise-reduction

2. Normalization:

Normalization of audio is simply pulling the volume or levels up to a decibel level that you set.

Normalization does not affect the dynamic range (the difference between the loudest and quietest parts of a recording).

How I Normalize Audio: I tell Audition to normalize the entire track to –3db. Audition then pulls up the volume of the entire track and the highest peak is now at –3db and so everything just got a little louder including the quietest parts.

normalize

 

3. EQ or Equalization:

All you need to know is that equalizers work in frequencies and everything on the left side of an EQ is the low-frequencies, the middle is the mids and the right is the highs.

high-pass-filter

How I EQ:
1. On every podcast I apply a High Pass Filter or what is often referred to as Rolling Off the Low End. I set the High Pass Filter to –80db and what the filter does is removes all low-end rumble that the microphone is picking up from room noise. I run a high pass filter on every episode.

  1. I also boost the high end ever so slightly with a ‘shelf’ which adds a little air (or treble) to my voice
  2. I sweep the mids and look for trouble sounds and make subtly cuts (–4 db) if necessary

Great EQ Resource: The Podcaster Studio by Ray Ortega. Download the EQ Cheat sheet and learn the frequencies.

 

 

4. DYNAMIC RANGE:

Dynamic range in audio is really just the difference between the loudest and quietest parts of the recording.

5. Compression:

The job of compression is to tame dynamic range to make it easier and more enjoyable for you the listener, but you don’t want to tame it too much or it will sound unnatural and weird.

Compression is what gives that boomy radio announcer voice.

Compression actually does is reduces the loudest parts of the audio to trim off the stray loud parts, also called transients thereby closing the gap between the loudest and quieter parts. So the overall volume is reduced, and then you crank it back up with what is called makeup gain and because the dynamic range got crushed, it sounds fuller and louder.

compression

My Single-Band Compression Settings (usually :D)

6. De-Esser

removes sibilance from strong consonant sounds. I do not use the De-Esser, but it is a term you should know about as most people use it.

7. Hard Limiting.

Hard limiting is a very popular technique that most audio engineers recommend using on the Master Track at the very end. It is a way to make the audio sound sound without the possibility of it peaking over 0dB.

EXPORTING.

Loudness Compliance
Broadcast standard is measured in LUFS.
Mono podcasts you want to get to –19LUFS and
stereo at –16 LUFS

Resource: The authority on this topic in my opinion is Paul Figgiani from ProduceNewMedia.com

 

Match Loudness Panel in Audition

I tell it to get my audio to –19 LUFS and set the limiter to –1.5 db. It does all the work and I hit save. My final audio file meets broadcast standards and with the limiter, I know the loudest peak will never go above –1.5 db so no clipping is possible.

match-loudness

 

My Final Export Settings:

Mono,
44.1,
128kbs
.mp3 file

 

final-export

Easy Editing Tools (One-click wonders)

  1. The new Essential Sound Panel in Adobe Audition (Applies Noise reduction, EQ, dynamics or compression, de-essing and limiting and smooth the levels)

    essential-sound-panel

 

  1. Auphonic (Excellent, easy and free)

auphonic

HOUSEKEEPING

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ep57: The Audio 101 Show (Part 1)

Episode 57 is is Part 1 of Audio 101. Today we learn the basics and fundamentals of audio that all podcasters in the pre-production and recording stage of podcasting. I will define and simplify several common audio terms and concepts that I wish I knew before I started podcasting.

Episode 58 will be Part 2 of Audio 101will focus on post-production and editing. I will define and simplify editing and post-processing terminology and techniques most commonly used in podcasting once the podcast has been recorded.

Goal of Series: The goal of this Audio 101 series is to simplify the audio engineering part of podcasting that can be very intimidating and overwhelming for most new podcasters. This is the stuff I wish I understood better when I was getting started.s.

The Podcaster’s Toolkit:

If you have favorite resource or tool you love and you want to share on the podcast, please send it to me at mike@mikemurphy.co and I’ll add it to the Kit.

If you are a vendor or product creator and would like me to test out a product or service, please let me know and I would be happy to test and share so long as I think it will benefit my listeners.

In this week’s The Podcaster’s Toolkit:
The Cloudlifter CL1-A Mic Activator.
What does it do?: Adds 25+ db of really clean gain using Phantom Power to my dynamic
microphone so the preamps in my mixer do not have to work as hard.

Audio 101.

Part 1 is Pre-Editing Basics
Part 2 is Editing & Final Export Basis

The Basics at the Recording Phase:

Tip: Keep your iPhones and iPads away from your speakers and recording interface as you can introduce what is called RF interference and staticky noises that you might not hear while recording but will make you crazy when you listen back.

Mono vs Stereo:

Mono simply means there is one channel for the sound so what you hear in the left speaker is the same as what you hear in the right speaker. If you are using one device (microphone) to input sound, mono is all you need.

Stereo has more than one channel and the sound in the left can be different than the sound in the right. That’s it. If you are using multiple devices to input sound (Like a rock band), stereo is your best choice.

Unless your podcast has a lot of music and special effects, such as in audio podcast dramas, mono is all you need to export in most cases.

My File Settings:
Mono, 44.1 and 32-bit float

Gain, Levels & db:

Gain is simply the input level of the clip. On your interface or mixer, you set the gain of your microphone.

Levels refers to the bouncing LED meters or lights of green, yellow and red when you are recording or playing back audio. You usually want the levels to be mostly green with the louder parts hitting yellow. If you see red, that is called clipping or** peaking**. That is very very bad. Never go into the red.

Decibels or dBs as you will hear most often is the number used to define where the levels are hitting.

All you need to understand is that 0DB is where audio starts to clip so anything in the positive over 0 is unusable audio.

Tip, I like to have the input levels between –18 and –9 db to give me what is called headroom. That is the cushion I have from –9db to 0. My finished audio might be closer to –3 or –1.5, but having headroom gives me room to edit and add effects to even out the sound.

Audition Keyboard Shortcuts:
To see levels: Option + i
To start recording: Shift + Spacebar

Waveforms

Well the green lines you see looking like mountain ranges are called Waveforms. They are simply the visual representation of audio so you can look at them at see the characteristics (loudness, dynamic range,….)

Resources for Learning (People I learned From)

Mike Russell (Music Radio Creative)The best tutorials on Audition by far.
Paul Figgiani from Produce New Media (Paul helped me a lot)
Curtis Judd has a lot of videos on YouTube
Ray Ortega from The Podcaster Studio has some great episodes with audio engineers who simplify it for podcasters and Ray has a great YouTube channel

HOUSEKEEPING

Subscribe To Podcast

Leave a ratings & review (if you already did, thanks)

Buy My New eBook (How To Podcast on Wordpress.com)

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Mike Murphy

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My Adobe Audition Podcast Workflow

My Adobe Audition Podcast Workflow

My Podcast:

Mike Murphy Unplugged teaches one man bands and creative entrepreneurs how to podcast and create online content. I teach the tools I use and love.

Episode 56: The Adobe Audition Show I introduced the Digital Audio Workstation, or DAW, that I use to record and edit my podcasts.

This is a summary of my workflow from Episode 56.

WHAT IS ADOBE AUDITION:

Adobe Audition is a Digital audio workstation, more commonly known in the audio world as DAW or D-A-W. Audition CC is the latest version and it is the software I use to record and edit each podcast episode.

Adobe Audition:
A professional audio workstation for mixing, finishing, and precision editing.
Audition is used to Mix, edit, and create audio content with a comprehensive toolset that includes multitrack, waveform, and spectral display. This powerful audio workstation is designed to accelerate video production workflows and audio finishing — and deliver a polished mix with pristine sound.

How much does it cost?
$19.99/month A la Carte
$49.99/month full Adobe CC (best deal)

Tip: Give the full Adobe CC a test run with a free 30 day trial to try everything out and if Audition CC is all you need, you just saved yourself $30 bucks/month

My Podcast Workflow Using Adobe Audition:

Hardware*:

Microphone:
Shure SM7B dynamic microphone
Cloudlifter-CL1

Audio Interface/Mixer:
Allen & Heath Zed 10 Mixer

*Affiliate Links to benefit podcast happiness fund.

Set Audio Hardware Preferences In Adobe Audition CC:

Set Audio Hardware Preferences Default Input & Output are mapped to my USB Interface CODEC (which is my mixer)

Audio default exports_auditionHardware Preferences

Default Input: is the microphone or device going into Audition. Input…IN. What device is pumping sound into Audition?
Default Output: is the sound going out of Audition and your computer. Where do you want the sound to playback from? Headphones? Speakers? Computer Speakers? I plug my Sony MDR–7506 Headphones into mixer, so Default Output is the same as my Default Input (USB Codec)

 

MY AUDITION WORKFLOW (The Simple Version):

For each podcast episode:
1. Create a master folder for each episode.
Inside I have two folders: Audio & Artwork (thumbnails).
2. Open Adobe Audition
Set Default Output & Input to map to Audio Interface/Mixer.

3. Create new blank audio file by going to
File > New Audio File. (Cmd + Shift + N)

4. Add Title:
Sample Rate:44,100.
Channel:Mono
Bit Depth: 32-bit Float

5. Save File to Audio Folder

To Show Levels: Hit option + i to show input levels of your microphone. Set levels between –18db & –9db (approximately)

6. Record Podcast & Save this Original File.

7. Make Duplicate of Original:
I save Original to have a clean untouched backup
To make copy: Go to Edit>Copy To New

 

8. Edit & Clean up on Duplicate Copy

9. Create New Multitrack Session (Cmd +N)
Create MultiTrack Session from Template
Intro & Outro in Template

 

Tip: Audition cc allows you to create templates, so for me when I create a new multitrack session, I choose the Mike template and my intro and outro are in place and I just need to add my voice track and line it up. Since my podcast is roughly the same length each week, this is about a 2 second ordeal.

10. To Process & Add Polish:
Use the new Audition CC Essential sound panel.

11. Export Multi-Mixdown as .mp3 (44.1, 32-bit float, 128kbps, Mono)
Bit rate (128) will affect file size, so you may want to bump down to 96 kbps and it will reduce file size. I like the higher quality and my shows are only 15 minutes, so I keep it at 128kbps.

screen-shot-2016-10-04-at-7-43-32-am

 

 

 

 

12. Use Match Loudness and make sure the file meets the Broadcast standards of –19LUFS for mono podcasts or –16LUFS for stereo

And that is the speedy version of my entire workflow in Audition.

Podcast:
Mike Murphy Unplugged
I help podcasters and content creators figure things out.