Almost all the podcasts I produce for clients involve on-location recordings – so after the sound has been gathered, I spend a lot of quality time huddled with this gear, assembling the material and doing whatever post-production is needed to the audio.
Typically, production involves multi track mixes of eight to 12 tracks, and up until recently I’ve been doing that work with Adobe Audition.
I switched to Pro Tools last year and regret not doing it sooner – the learning curve is quite steep, but once it clicks, everything just falls into place, particularly if you’ve ever worked in a large multi track studio environment.
I should point out that even though I’m a huge fan of Pro Tools, I still recommend Audion to people – it runs well on just about any PC and is still an inexpensive way to get going with multi-track audio software. (When Adobe bought what was then called Cool Edit, I thought they’d bury the software, but Adobe has continued to support it)
Here’s the guide to what’s on the desk (click either image to see a larger version).
1. ProTools 8
4. Phone audio interface/patch for
recording phoners, like on BrainPicker.ca
7. CF cards from Sound Devices field recorder
8. Pen for Wacom tablet
9. Mixer for house sound
10. M-box (audio interface for ProTools)
11. Wireless keyboard
12. Must have – coffee
13. Must have – analog notepad
14. Midi keyboard
15. Mackie MCU control surface
In the field I use Sound Devices gear – their digital recorders and field mixers are simply the best. People accustomed to those tiny consumer recorders find the gear big, but for flawless & dependable field recording, there simply is nothing like it. I am almost always running on battery power, and I can go for a solid 4 hours without even worrying about a charge – and that’s with a full 4 channel mixer feeding into the digital recorder. And coupled with custom PortaBrace bags, I can use the stuff in any kind of weather.