Being a salesperson at TOMS, I saw a need with clients who wanted to start a podcast in and as one of the leading specialists in this industry decided to get to work. I have, personally, been involved in creating a podcast for TOMS (TOMS Talks) and developing the show for approximately a year now. In that time various brands have approached me to represent them and in doing so, I have become more and more specialised in the setup, production and concept design on various other shows around the country.
What you need to understand about a podcast, is that anyone can become a podcaster. It is all about your interests and you will be amazed how many people are also interested in what you have to say, but we will delve deeper into this in later blogs.
So, you decided that you want to start a podcast… Now what, where to now? How do you get started and what hardware do you need? So many people become frustrated, because when you search for “how to podcast”, all you get is where to distribute, what to talk about and online pricing for products that you have no clue on how to use, or even if you need them.
When it comes to hardware, there are 3 things you need to consider:
- What is my budget?
- How good do you want the quality to be?
- How many people are you wanting to interview, if any?
Take your budget into consideration when wanting to start a podcast. All a podcast really is, is you recording yourself and uploading the file to a distribution platform. You don not need to spend a whole lot of money to start doing this. There are quite a few products out there ranging from R1000 upwards.
Starting off, you can record your podcast with your mobile phone, but it is not advisable, as the on-board mic quality is very low. My recommendation would be, a compatible lavalier mic, which is relatively inexpensive. Here are two products you can consider: The Rode Smartlav+ the Shure MVL
The Shure MVL is an easy to use mini lavalier mic that plugs into your iPhone or Android device via a TRRS connection. Most modern Smartphones do not have a headphone jack input, which these units require to work, but if you use the Trademarked USB-C or Lightning headphone adaptor, this will allow you to connect the microphones and you can record to your hearts’ content directly to your Smartphone.
The Rode Smartlav+ is exactly the same concept as the Shure MVL and with the same headphone adapter you will be able to record your podcast to your Smartphone. These units are perfect for the “beginner” podcaster.
Your next step up would be a USB Condenser mic. These microphones will give you a much better-quality recording and you would use your Windows PC/Laptop or Apple Mac OS device. They are Plug-and-Play and easy to setup.
Prices start at R2000 and up. Some examples below:
Your more professional podcaster will want to have interviews with guests and have a full production on their recording. This requires a bit more hardware and some technical knowledge, but with a little help from your friends at TOMS this becomes extremely easy.
Products used includes podcast desks, like the Rode Rodecaster Pro, USB enabled mixer or any 2/4 or 8 channel audio interfaces, with either, dynamic- or condenser microphones.
Here are some examples of both mixers, interfaces and mics:
Things can become tricky when choosing which software to use to record your podcast, but as per usual we are here to help and advise you on which program would suit your needs.
Software for Smartphones:
- Shure MOTIV Audio
- Built-in Smartphone Audio Recording App
Software for PC/Mac:
- Cubase LE
- Pro Tools First
You can also view our Live Stream, TOMS Talks on all TOMS Facebook pages for more insight into products, artists, celebrities and much more.
In my next post I will outlay more on recording your podcast and finding distribution platforms.
Heinrich from TOMS Rivonia (Your number one Studio & Podcast Specialist)