Phone record/ Music

Hello everyone,
I a, doing a podcast with several friends and was wondering if someone can help me out. The issue that I’m having is that I’m trying to have phone interviews. I can plug my phone into the mp3 input and hear the aller just fine. However, te problem is getting it to record. We can all have a conversation together live but when playing back looks like the caller did not get recorded. Also, another issue that I’m having is pretty similar. I’m trying to play intro music by plugging my iPod up to the mp3 input same problem doesn’t record. Or even just playing it through YouTube doesn’t record either… Any suggestions? Thanks in advance…

That’s kind of a riot of different problems.

The very best telephone interviews are “Double Headers” where both you and the performer record themselves at their own house in very high quality and then one sends the very high quality sound file to the other for marriage into the final show. The actual phone is just for coordination. The honky bubbling cellphone voices on the call never make it into the show. Since you have to cut and edit phone interviews anyway, this can give you a terrific show. I shot one of these a bunch of months ago for an NPR radio interview.

If you’re stuck with cold-calling someone, then yes, you have to use the honky, stuttering cellphone voice.

The best generic way to record phone voices so far is one of these microphone systems.

It works with any phone and produces a clear voice from both ends of the call. The only restriction is your end can only be one person unless you have ConferenceCall® with the rest of the people on the other side. Oh, and the computer can’t be doing anything else.

Very few Windows laptops have Stereo Line-In. You can make a very good quality stereo Line-In with a Behringer UCA202 or equivalent.

Plug the UCA202 in and then start Audacity. Use the input (microphone icon) drop-down to select the USB device.

You can record internet audio on most Windows machines by changing settings in Windows.

Macs need to add software to do that and you may have to as well. Depends on the computer.

I know of no way to get all of these services into one podcast at the same time. You almost always have to do the show in segments and jam it together in post production editing. The Big Kids use a large sound mixer with multiple inputs for microphones, remote lines, music systems for stingers, bumpers, interstitials and themes and connections through special hybrid machines for phone interviews.

One of the serious problems with phone interviews is keeping the caller’s voice from going back to them. That’s insanely annoying and most people can’t talk through it.

“I… and …can’t… Can you make that echo go away?”


And since you seem to be in love with MP3, don’t do that. Never do production in MP3. MP3 is a compressed delivery format and if you try editing and production with it, the compression damage will get worse and worse and you’ll end up with a honky, bubbling show that’s difficult to hear. Do everything in WAV until the final posting and then compress that just before it goes out the door. Uncompressed WAV files are enormous compared to MP3, but they survive multiple edits perfectly.