Evaluation of Mics and Mic Sounds Utilized by Podcasters – Nexus Vista

I feel I’ve lastly found out what’s up with podcast audio. At the very least by way of:

So what I’m going to do is simply blast you with what I not less than suppose I do know at this level.

My audio journey

I’ve been learning these things in-depth since round 2019. And in the course of the pandemic I went onerous on it. Like full audiophile.

I realized the science round what audiophiles had been on about. I realized about what makes good sound in music. I constructed my home in 2020 and put in a reasonably sick sound system.

However plenty of my focus was on discovering the right sound for a podcast. Like how I wished to sound in audio, and what it takes to make that occur.

Earlier posts

  • My podcast sound replace in 2021 MORE

  • Chasing the right microphone sound MORE

This submit principally updates and replaces plenty of what I talked about in these, though a lot of what I stated earlier than nonetheless holds.

The fundamentals, in no explicit order

First I’ll hit you with the science / actuality stuff after which I’ll provide you with some samples.

Dynamic microphones

  • Dynamic mics have much less vary however are extra forgiving of noises.

  • The Shure SM7b is probably the most well-known dynamic mic proper now, and just about each main podcaster makes use of it.

  • The SM7b produces a lovely, rounded, deep, however a bit bit lifeless sound. It makes you sound authoritative.

Condenser microphones

  • Condenser mics are extraordinarily clear however very noisy as a result of they choose up the whole lot.

  • Condensers seize mouth noises, any room sounds, and just about something VERY clearly and precisely.

  • In addition they pull in rather more sound vary, that means approach up in direction of 20,000 hz and past, which makes them sound much less lifeless and extra practical.

  • Examples embody the Yeti collection on the low finish (lower than $100), and the Neumann U87ai on the excessive finish ($4,500).

Widespread errors with post-production

  • Numerous podcasters—particularly males—like a super-deep sound as a result of they suppose it makes them sound cool and authoritative.

  • Sadly, all that further bass sounds synthetic over time and is definitely fairly fatiguing to take heed to.

  • It’s additionally actually onerous to take heed to in a automotive, the place plenty of individuals take heed to podcasts, as a result of the low rumbling mixes with the street noise.

Signature sounds

The sounds of well-known podcasters

  • Sam Harris makes use of an SM7b (or the USB model) and retains it fairly clear with not an excessive amount of post-production. He’s had the identical signature for years now. It’s principally mid-range, with some respectable bass however not an excessive amount of, extraordinarily clear by way of mouth noises and background noises, and a bit sterile. It really works effectively for him as a result of it’s like an understated clear sound.

  • Chris Williamson is a super-popular podcaster now and he additionally makes use of SM7b’s, however he mixes his personal mic with plenty of post-production to have tons extra highs and “atmosphere” added in. Which principally means character. In the event you take heed to his podcast his voice at all times has a robust mixture of deep but additionally vivid. Actually good manufacturing, and I’d be stunned if he or his staff ever shared his post-production chain. I wager he considers it a commerce secret.

  • Joe Rogan additionally makes use of the SM7b and he has a sound profile that’s very impartial and pure. I’m undecided if Jamie enhances the highs or not, however the general combine may be very clear and clear.

  • Lex Fridman can be on an SM7b and he has a reasonably impartial sound with some highs probably added in.

  • I consider Scott Galloway is on SM7b’s as effectively, and he undoubtedly has some added in highs after the actual fact. His sound is much more pure and vivid than one thing like Joe’s.

Ideas for enhancing your audio

  • The final rule for audio is to do as a lot as potential at recording time and as little as potential in post-production. Which means 1) room therapy, and customarily having a quiet room if potential.

  • Eradicating echo is a superpower for making audio sound superb. Positively do that if you wish to sound skilled. I’ve been utilizing DeVerberate for years and find it irresistible.

  • In the event you’re going to make use of the SM7b, my advice is to make use of the it with bass rolled off and the highs raised on the microphone itself. It will nonetheless have loads of bass however it’ll make the mic sound rather more pure and vibrant vs. sterile and lifeless.

  • Do as little submit processing as potential.

  • Deal with your room if potential.

  • Ensure that to take away echo, even if you happen to don’t suppose you’ve gotten a lot.

Extra trivia / methods

  • Loudness is misleading and an enhancer. Mainly, being louder sounds higher to most ears, however watch out with the way you obtain it.

  • Watch out with loudness with out compression as a result of you can begin clipping (reducing out from being too loud).

  • Watch out with an excessive amount of compresssion as a result of it may take away the pure sound and make it sound extra sterile and lifeless.

My present setup

My present setup is kind of clear and easy. I’ve moved away from my Neumann U87ai as a result of it picks up an excessive amount of noise. Most significantly my mouth noises, shaking ft, the sound of my clothes rubbing, and many others.

  • SM7b

  • Totally handled studio / workplace the place I work

  • Bass rolled off (on the mic {hardware})

  • Highs enhanced (on the mic {hardware})

  • RODECASTER PRO for my mixer

  • The one mod on my RODECASTER PRO is a noise gate

  • Put up-production after I report in Hindenburg and never OBS:

    • DeVerberate for echo removing

    • Nectar 4 for noise gate

    • Nectar 4 for bass cutoff beneath 80

    • Nectar 4 for a slight raise in mid bass

    • Nectar 4 cutout at round 1500 hz to take away dangerous mids

    • Nectar 4 minor excessive shelf added after round 7000

Right here’s what that feels like


  1. You must in all probability use a dynamic mic except you’re a skilled studio speaker.

  2. You must in all probability use a dynamic mic if you happen to don’t have a handled room.

  3. Resist the urge so as to add bass. It solely sounds cool for a second, after which is dangerous for listeners.

  4. When you’ve got any doubts, go along with the SM7b. It’s a workhorse. And if you happen to can’t afford one but (round $400), get the little brother USB model.

  5. In the event you do get an SM7b you’ll want an audio interface to place it in, and/or a sign booster.

  6. Deal with getting a clear, pure sound out of your voice, not making it sound deep or booming. That’s what will minimize by means of the listener’s surroundings and make it to them one of the best.

  7. Do as a lot as you possibly can throughout recording, and attempt to modify it as little as potential in submit.

  8. Lastly, don’t stress it an excessive amount of. The content material issues extra anyway.

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