4 Tips to Improve Podcast Sound Quality

Sound quality is one of the pillars on which the success of your podcast hinges. Most people can’t differentiate between great and good sounding audio, but everybody can tell when a podcast recording sounds bad. This will turn listeners away not only because it is unpleasant to listen to, but because bad audio implies unprofessionalism, which leads to mistrust towards the value of the content itself. 

That is why we wanted to share these 4 tips on how to improve your podcasts sound quality. Let’s jump right into it!

Affiliate Disclaimer. Before we dive into this content it’s just fair to make you aware that this article may contain affiliate links. We have standards around here, so we will never recommend a product or service that we haven’t either used ourselves (or with our clients) successfully. Sometimes these affiliate links will even get you special deals that are not available otherwise, or unlock special bonuses from us. In any case we want you to know that we really appreciate your support if you sign up for a tool with our affiliate link. Let’s dive in.

1. Podcast Recording Software

You may have expected the first tip to be: “Get a good microphone!” If so, you are not entirely wrong. What mic you use definitely has an effect, but the recording software is just as important and often overlooked when trying to improve podcast sound quality. Even if you buy the most expensive microphone on the market, if you record your audio with Zoom or Skype for example, it will sound like you have recorded it with your phone alone. 

So, what do you need to look out for when choosing which recording software to use? There are many choices on the market in all price ranges, but the main factor you should look out for is if the software has been made for the purpose of recording, or if that is simply an extra feature.

Recording Software Recommendation
We recommend you to use AUDACITY, a software very easy to use and free of charge. In this video you will also find instructions on how to use Audacity and which settings are best for your purpose.

Recording Software for Online Interviews
We have seen many podcasters use Skype and Zoom to record their online conversations, leading to poor sound quality. Your podcast guest may not be quite as techy as you are, but don’t worry! Ringer and Zencastr are both very easy to use and a great alternative with better sound quality.

Improve Podcast Sound Quality - Recording Software

2. Podcast Editing Software

Another way to improve your podcast sound quality is to use a good editing software. There are so many editing softwares out there, it can be overwhelming. Which software is right for you depends on your skill level, editing needs and budget. 

Features you want to look out for in editing softwares:

  • Does it let you apply effects?
  • Can background noise be removed?
  • Does it let you edit multiple sources (multiple microphones)?
  • Is it a non destructive editing software (won’t change the original audio file and allows you to fix mistakes easily)?

Editing Software Recommendations
(We do not recommend you use Audacity to edit your recordings.)
We work with Adobe Audition to edit and we can only recommend it. Or if you’re on a Mac you can also use Garageband.

There will be a steeper learning curve, but you will save HOURS on wasted time when you use something like Audacity – and you avoid the risk of losing your files by accident.

Improve Podcast Sound Quality - Editing Software

3. Recording Environment

Have you ever listened to a recording and felt like the person speaking was standing in a bathroom or massive hall? That echo effect is caused by reflective surfaces surrounding the speaker. It is possible to fix that during editing, but we prefer to adjust our surroundings instead, by placing dampening materials in front of reflective surfaces.

Here are some suggestions to improve podcast sound quality:

  • Curtains to stop the windows from reflecting and/or to decrease the sound penetrating from the outside.
  • Carpet (especially if the room you are recording in has tiles)
  • Coverage for your mirrors
  • Foam for your walls (rarely necessary)
podcast directories checklist

4. Microphone’s for Podcasting

There are 2 main types of microphones out there: condenser microphones and dynamic microphones.

Condenser microphones are very sensitive to surrounding noises, which is a problem if you are recording at home and there are all sorts of other noises happening. But if you have a quiet space to record, we recommend the Blue Yeti microphone, best used with a pop-filter to filter out the air movement you create while speaking.

Dynamic microphones are better at filtering out the tiny background noises that just tend to creep their way into recordings and make your voice the center of attention. We can recommend you the Audio-Technica ATR2100x and Samsung Q2U. Both of these microphones are dynamic microphones with a cardioid recording pattern (they pick up sounds coming directly into the mic from the front and ignore sounds coming from behind) and they will serve you well for a LONG time.

Ready to get serious about your podcast?

Then reach out today to get our team to take over your editing today.