Podcamp Philly 2007: Audio Editing Techniques

Presented by Mark Blevis, Electric Sky and Canadian Podcast Buffet.

The workshop’s popular enough to push us into an overflow room. That means we can’t interact with the presenter, but we do have wired connections and power! Mark is using Cubase on the Mac. Starts off talking about the ancient old days of tape editing, then transitions to digital editing.

First up, the clean cut, doing simple editing of clips with little background noise.

Second, editing clips from a coffee ship with heavy background news and some uhms. Talking about using crossfade to edit clips with busy ambiant backgrounds. Audacity can’t do crossfades built in, so you have to separate into two tracks, fade one out and fade the other in.

It’s possible to remove too many ummms and ahhs and breaths, making them sound robotic. People occasionally pause to think and your audio should for reflect that. Strongest, loudest aprt of your speech is always when you start a sentance. He’s talking about actually editing breath sounds in to give things a more organic flow by putting them infront of peaks. That’s just crazy talk!

In editing interviews, edit to the focus of the interview and leave in the ahs and ums, or at best, remove every other one. In recording interviews, if the interview is going to be 10 minutes, record 12 or 13 so you have an extra question or two you can swap in for a less-interesting or botched one.

Listening to this, it occurs to me that there are a lot of filters that I could be experimenting with for the podcast. Maybe I need to start a “Testing Range” podcast just to try out new techniques…

Wondering what’s legal when you’re doing podcasting & interviews? Check out the Podcasting Legal Guide.

Record as stereo WAV, then mix down to MP3. Recording in mono can create problems in some players that might freak over mono.

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