The podcasting industry is one that has taken off in the past few years. Now we are seeing new entrants in the podcasting world that want to take advantage of this ever growing space.
Podcasting greatly relies on good audio production because it is basically broadcast media.
It is for this reason that one need the understanding of various of equipment and how it can be used to get good high quality audio if they are to run a successful podcast.
One of the popular asked questions on the Web is:
“Can you podcast with one microphone?”
Podcasting with one microphone is possible and more favorable if you only have one speaker or talker. However, if you have multiple speakers it’s not ideal to have one mic, it’s best to have each speaker have their own microphone in order to have better control over the broadcast.
Podcasting with multiple talkers/speakers on one microphone can make audio production cumbersome because people have different vocal tones, vocal projection and varying vocal dynamics which can be better handled separately than altogether in audio production.
Why having one Mic is not ideal for podcasting
First things first, to host a podcast with guests you need more than one microphone so that everyone can have the freedom to properly take part in the conversation.
Having a one microphone limits the freedom that each speaker can have.
However, If you’re hosting a podcast on your own without any guests then all you need is one microphone because you’re ultimately the only speaker.
You need not worry about having a bunch of microphones because the fact is, they’ll be of no use.
But in a more guest oriented podcast, each speaker should have their own microphone so they can be free to pitch in on the conversation whenever.
Podcasting is a type of broadcast media that deals with conversation and open dialogue among participants.
Therefore, in order to keep the natural flow of communication organic each contributor or guest should have their own microphone.
For example, if you’re hosting a podcast with one microphone with a guest. They’ll be forced to respond more often at any cue that you allow them or induce them to respond.
This somehow destroys the natural flow of conversation.
Each speaker having their own microphone can make for open dialogue and allow speakers to exercise their conversational freedom without being forced to pitch in at all times.
Another thing that you have to look at when thinking of recording a podcast is the variations in human voices.
If you’re hosting a live podcast and have only one microphone, the varying dynamics of different speakers can be easily notable and in some cases may be unpleasant to listen to.
Therefore to account for the varying vocal dynamics of each individual podcast participant, you can easily have more then one microphone. Preferably one microphone for each individual speaker.
Most podcasts available on the Internet right now are not necessarily live. Most of them are pre-recorded and then published after they’ve been edited and made ready for the public.
When a podcast that has multiple contributors using one microphone.
The audio production and processing becomes cumbersome because now you have to edit different voice types recorded over one microphone.
The conversational nature of podcasts would have vocals mixed and cluttered all over each other which will in most cases pose a challenge during the editing and audio processing stage production.
Having individual microphones for each contributor allows the editing and processing of audio to be smoother because the engineer will have isolated stems of the audio picked up by each microphone for every speaker or contributor.
Control and Monitoring
During live show podcasts, good audio quality is always the goal. Therefore audio has to be thoroughly monitored to ensure that it is kept away from both High and low extremes.
If you’re podcasting with multiple people speaking, each of these people having their own microphones allows you to properly monitor audio.
Audio will be captured and processed through separate individual audio channels for each microphone where they can be easily monitored.
If there any changes to make to any one audio channel, you can be sure that these changes can be made without altering any other channels.
On the other hand, if you’re using one microphone to capture several voices. The changes you make to the audio channel capturing and processing this audio will ultimately affect all voices being captured by that microphone.
Which can pose a challenge if the voices running through a specific channel are more than one and have varying dynamics.
Recording a Podcast with one microphone
In some situations you may be faced with the challenge of having to record with one microphone.
You should opt for a 8 figure polar pattern microphone and what you have to do is place it in the middle of a table and have people sitting facing each other on each side of a table.
When recording the podcast the people should focus on having the conversation without focusing on speaking into the microphone.
They should focus on having the conversation naturally because the 8 figure polar pattern will pick up the conversation easily.
You can also use an omnidirectional microphone but you have to be careful because omnidirectional microphones will pick up the conversation as well as any other noises in the room.
So you have to ensure that you record in a room that is well soundproofed and acoustically treated.
You can also have the omni-directional microphone on a table while two people sit on each side of the table facing each other and record.