Twin PPM Meters

In part 1 of this two-part blog we covered one of the two easy-made errors in recording interviews: namely “staying on mic” i.e. those speaking should stay a consistent distance (unless it’s for artistic reasons) from the microphone, in order to go some way to making a quality recording.

The second “sin” we shall be the subject of this blog: “Popping the microphone. It’s an easy thing to do, especially for those inexperienced in using a microphone, but at the same time, easy not to do.

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Twin PPM Meters

Continuing the subject of my last blog, namely attention to levels in podcasts, I have to confess that for someone who was, until recently, a “radio fan”, having no loyalty to a particular station since my listening to broadcast radio was wide and varied, Marconi’s brainchild is now no-longer my first choice for audio listening. As I outlined previously, podcasts offer an almost limitless scope of subjects, opinion (let’s call it that and not stray in to “fake news” territory) and “colour”.

Overall though, it must be said the production values of only a few can be said to be great, the ones that are clearly made by seasoned “radio people” stand out like a beacon: Well scripted, researched and structured and, in the aspect of audio production I hold dear, technically well produced too. Unfortunately, a great deal, whilst editorially well meaning, are marred by simple mistakes and poor technical execution.
So, I hope this blog will be a form of “workshop” that, should you both read this and be producer of Podcasts, will gain some benefit from.

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Can We Have a Bit of (Attention to) Level Please?

Getting Levels Right Aides An Easier Listen

I have been listening to a lot of podcast recently. From history to politics and, it seems, pretty much everything else in between, there is a podcast catering for it.

The “content” (as an aside I can’t say I am a great fan of that word. It makes the producers efforts sound like something written on the side of a cereal box: “Contents may settle in transit”) of many are well researched, structured and delivered and make for a great listen. 

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"Hmmm. Nice lampshade."

How to Improve the Credibility of Your Skype Contributions to Broadcasters

"Hmmm. Nice lampshade” or similar sarcastic words to that effect is a phrase I have heard on more than one occasion in a TV studio gallery. They are said during those contributions, delivered by experts, or a reporter, over Skype or similar systems, usually via the contributor’s laptop. We see their head and shoulders and, due to the angle of the screen, the light in the centre of the room, or perhaps a crammed book case against a wall. Frankly it looks naff.

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On the face of it the title of this blog may seem like teaching your parents mothers to imbibe an ovum. After all, connecting a piece of wire to that most universal of audio connectors is simple enough, is it not?

Well it is. But to do it well and not making a mess of it in the process does take a little practice and the learning of a few tips. Ok, I accept pre-wired cables are readily available, but sometimes you will have to reach for the soldering iron  to make a bespoke cable up, or repair an existing one. So when you do, you may as well make sure the job properly. (Top Tip: For your own sanity steer clear of the IDC connector versions of the XLR – they are simply horrible)

The accompanying photos are all real-world examples of good and poor XLR wiring, forming a step-by-step guide on good practice and what not to do.

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There no doubt that video streaming is now an everyday event on the web. No longer do you have to plan well in advance and use expensive equipment that requires rigging and meticulous operation.

Periscope and Facebook Live are two of the higher profile platforms to deliver a live video experience, whilst cameras and apps such as Mevo and RecoLive are two methods to capture the video content. The video manipulation is truly staggering. High pixel-count cameras allow zoom and close-ups from a wide shot, meaning for simple shoots multiple cameras are no longer required.

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I have big list.

That’s not a boast. It just is.

The email circular list I send my newsletter and other e-based mail-shots to I add to pretty much on a daily basis.

This blog is not a master-class on list building, suffice to say I use all the regular and legitimate methods to add subscribers and send them information about AV Resilience.And every time I send a circular via my list I get emails back stating “Someone has unsubscribed from the AVR Prospect List”.

And you know what? I am glad about this.

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