The three most important factors of a good sounding podcast

My podcast didn’t sound good at first. Now it does. So let me share the 3 most important factors to consider for a better sounding podcast.

1. Invest in good microphones

Buy Shure SM7Bs. They cost 390 €. Yes, that's a lot for a microphone. Though if you enter a competitive market the quality of your product needs to be very high. So, get good microphones.

2. Normalize, equalize and compress

After you recorded your podcast you edit it. At first you normalize each audio track. That changes the overall volume to a fixed level. Then you add an Equalizer (EQ) and Compressor to each recorded audio track.

When you record an interview podcast you usually interview people that are not used to speak into a mic. So often they are too far away from the mic and then get closer once I tell them. Some have a quiet voice but laugh very loudly. That and more can make an audio recording sound very uneven.

A Compressor makes quiet sounds louder and loud sounds more quiet, so this effect evens out your audio recording. An EQ has the same goal as a Compressor but with different, more subtle means: you can target specific frequencies that you want to emphasize or that you want less of.

3. Learn how to speak into a microphone

Speaking into a microphone is harder than you think. You want to sound natural in an unnatural speaking situation. So get used to it first by trying different techniques: Turn the recording volume up and speak louder but at a greater distance from the mic. Turn the recording volume down, speak closer to the mic but more quietly.

Here are two very good YouTube tutorials on that topic that will spare you a lot of trial & error: