James Schramko here. Today, I got asked what do you do if you have a noisy environment to record in? You can hear this room is very echoey. It’s got hard surfaces, there are no curtains. We’ve got this desk here and harsh walls so absolutely nothing soft to absorb the sound, hard flooring as well.
So, one thing we can do is improve the quality of the microphone. Now, I’ve often used a lav mic, and that’s pretty good. That’s going to reduce the echo a little bit. But another thing you can do, if you’re already doing podcasts and you happen to possess a podcasting mic, you can use that to plug it into your phone. So I have this NT-USB here, and what I’ve done is I’ve plugged the power cable, that USB cable, into a phone charger on the wall just over there, right? You can see the little cord.
And now what I’ve done is I’ve put this cord here from the headphone jack, the output from the microphone. So you speak into the mic, and you can actually monitor it through the headphones. That’s the jack and I’m now going to plug that into the phone. So I got that little adapter we get when we buy a phone, and excuse the click while I do this. So now the sound is coming from that microphone. So as I turn here, if I was going to be doing some kind of a video, I would have my voice projecting into that podcasting mic which, of course, is sitting inside this foam mudguard. And I put a little piece of foam on the top, a little piece of foam on the bottom. And if it sounds a little bit better, that’s because I’m using a better microphone.
So if you have a very echoey environment to record in, other things you can do, you can have curtains, drapes, carpet, beanbags, pillows, any kind of soft furnishings. Of course, you’ve seen a lot of the videos I make in my other place where I have this sort of foam material all over the walls, like three of the walls in that place. And it just soaks a lot of the sound up, and that’s why my podcast sound reasonably good.
Right now, I’ve got the air conditioner running. It’s summer in Sydney. But with this little mudguard, you can actually take the edge of an echoey place as a good starting point. It’s not perfect, but it’s something you can get set up for about $200 and away you go. So, hopefully, this is useful. That’s how I would start if you’re in a particularly noisy place.
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