Picking a Microphone
Okay, so you're ready to buy your first microphone? Well I will tell you a secret. I didn't buy one for my first season for all five episodes of season one of the freedom lifestyle podcast. I recorded them from my iphone and I didn't even have the XR, whatever X iphone, that's the latest one. I used my iphone six. So if you're curious what it sounds like to record from an iphone, feel free to listen to any of the first five episodes of my podcast At the beginning. I really just wanted to play around with this medium. I wasn't taking it as seriously as you. I know you're gonna get your stuff together and be really intentional from the beginning, especially if you're taking a course like this. I was really figuring things out on my own and I was trying to do it for $0. So the microphone in your smartphone is, is pretty good. So it's definitely possible. But if you're ready to make an investment and really take the quality of your audio seriously of course now I do even for this um online...
course, I'm using my Yeti mic because I think that's really important instead of just listening or instead of just using the microphone that came in my laptop or perhaps even the microphone built into my earphone. So the most popular again, we're focusing on lower price point budget starter microphones. Okay, so I've made some recommendations that are simple to use. I do not want you to get overwhelmed by the technical aspect and I don't want you to spend so much that you're taking forever to recover from your expenses before this starts being a profitable thing in the event that you're looking to make money from it. So deciding on which type of microphone you need. I have another slide on what factors when you're making a purchase, but before you even get to that state, you really want to think about how you're going to be recording your shows. Is it going to be just a solo episode? Always with you, are you going to always be interviewing your guests remotely and interviewing people that aren't in the same spot as you. Are you going to be traveling and wanting to take your microphone on the go. And so portability is going to be a big factor for you. So I definitely think that through, if you want to leave all your options open, then you definitely want to go for something like the Yeti microphone and I'll explain over the next few slides and even demo this microphone here in terms of why, but if you're just starting out and you think you're just gonna do solo episodes and you're not planning on recording anything in person, then the snowball microphone, which is the first image that you're seeing on the left would be good for you. Um it has a cardioid polar pattern, which polar pattern is in reference to how it picks up sound around your microphone. So, and mike like that is just going to pick it up from the front. Okay, um, the Yeti has a bunch of different features. It can pick up from all around. So it's great for interview styles, which was really important to me. However, the Yeti is very heavy. It's not very portable. So I actually own a second mike, the Samsung go. Um, what's great about it is it comes with that little stand, it can also hook onto my laptop And I can then podcast while I'm traveling. I am working on becoming more and more of a digital nomad traveling a ton over, you know, 2018, and 2020. So I really needed a portable Mike as well. I've included links for all of these microphones where you can buy them on amazon. These prices are in Canadian dollars. So if you're an american listening to this, well even better for you. So the links at the bottom as well as in this deck that I'm sharing with you when you're deciding to buy a microphone, it's going to get very intimidating with all of the technical specifications for each microphone. So I'm really breaking down what each of them mean and what you need to be considering when one is right for you. So the first thing you're going to see is a dynamic microphone versus a condenser microphone. So a condenser microphone is definitely higher quality and it can, the con to that though is it picks up a lot more stuff that's happening in the room, a dynamic mic. Well, it might not be has high of equality, it's really good if you're going to be using non treated podcast room. So if you're going to be recording in busy environments or maybe your apartment where there isn't a proper soundproof walls and, you know, soft fabrics that you should kind of have around you while you're recording, a dynamic microphone might be a better starter. Mike my issue with dynamic microphones though is that they're harder to find. I ended up buying two condenser mics and yes, it picks up more sensitivity and yes, I have to be more mindful of where I'm recording from. But for me personally, I was committed to doing that regardless. I want to have an intimate setting for me and my guests. So I can really just think clearly and focus on what I'm saying. So for those reasons, I chose the condenser microphone. But technically speaking, if you're not going to be recording in the most soundproof room, then a dynamic mic might be a better fit for you. The next you're gonna see is a USB mic versus an X L. R. So an XLR mic is more fancy, you know, you are going to get a higher quality from it, but you're gonna need more equipment. So an XLR, it cannot just connect directly into your computer, so you're gonna need a mixer or you're gonna need something that's going to be able to create a file that you can then use on your laptop for editing and for what you actually want to do with it. For that reason, starting out a podcast doing it on a budget. I really think the USB mics are a way to go. It's less things to travel with, it's less things to carry around. It's less things to buy. My Yeti mic is connected right into my laptop right now when I'm recording, I record right into garageband or right into my recording software, which we'll get to that next. But I really, really recommend just starting with a nice USB microphone. So back to that comment I made about polar patterns. So, polar patterns really just determined how it records the most common. Well is a cardioid. Okay, so that just means that it's going to be recording from the front of your microphone. It's great. That means it's not going to capture what's all over around it. So it's really going to be able to focus in on your voice. That's the pattern I'm using right now is the cardioid. But what's great about the Yeti is it has four polar patterns. So just by turning the knob, which I'll show you in the demo, I can turn it to a bio directional mic which allows me to record from the front and the back or omni directional, which would record the whole thing. So look at the polar patterns for your mic and upgrade to one that has more patterns if you want to do in person interviews or if you want to capture like a group experience, if it's always a solo podcast or it's always going to be you in front of a laptop, recording someone somewhere else. A cardioid is fine for you. This I think is so important. So does the microphone have zero delay monitoring essentially what this means is can you connect your headphones to it and be able to listen to in real time what's being captured? It's a very different experience versus what's happening right now where I didn't want to put my headphones in and kind of look all cheesy for this because it's video, but for recording audio, no one can see you. So you can have your headphones in and you want to know what it sounds like. You want to really be immersed in that experience and be able to adjust the sensitivity, the gain, the volume, make sure no weird background noise is being picked up. That you wouldn't have noticed. I recorded all of Season two of my podcast in a coworking space that had fake turf grass on the ground. And thank goodness we had zero delay headphone monitoring because you could hear when my guests were kind of shuffling around with their feet. So I really recommend that feature the final thing is how portable is it. So again, my dream is to go on tour with my podcast. I am a backpacker, a digital nomad. I want to bring my mic with me and be able to record from everywhere and anywhere. And the Yeti mic didn't do that for me unfortunately. So I did buy that Samsung go as my portable mike and I've been really happy with it. You also can't argue with that price of $50 Canadian. So there you go. There are some factors for buying a microphone. I'm now going to do a little demo of the Yeti mic so you can get a closer look.