Categories
Distribution

Branded RSS podcasting: the definitive guide

Whose domain is in your RSS feed: yours or somebody else’s? Of course, for your own benefit it should only be your own. And the domain registrar should be completely independent from your hosting company or hosting companies. Otherwise, the conflict of interest that would arise upon any dispute or sudden expulsion would be like hiring your spouse —a lawyer— to represent you in your own divorce. The only way to be absolutely sure to retain existing podcast subscribers is to own your own domain and use it as the basis of your RSS feed. This ebook will explain why RSS is essential for syndication on platforms like Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, RadioPublic, TuneIn and more, and why it must be totally under your own control. This ebook will also compare 4 options where you can accomplish all of this on a single server, be it a “podcast host” or a standard website host, including the costs, primary advantages and disadvantages of each.

Here’s the table of contents:

  • Introduction
  • What’s an RSS, in general and in podcasting?
  • Why Branded RSS?
  • Why 301 redirect is not enough
  • Two dedicated podcasts hosts that offer Branded RSS, and how they differ
  • Hosting on a marketed podcast host versus a standard web server
  • How to handle stats if not on a “podcast host”
  • Squarespace self-hosted podcasting with a Branded RSS?
  • Cost comparison when the same server host is used for everything
  • The bottom line, depending upon your current situation
  • Does your website comply with GDPR and DMCA?
  • Acknowledgements
  • Some other books by Allan Tépper
  • Online radio shows by Allan Tépper
  • About the author
  • Brands and FTC disclosures

For more information about this new ebook, visit BrandedRSS.com.

Categories
News Production

RØDECaster adds 25+ new features with free 2.0 update

The multipurpose RØDECaster Pro mixer/recorder/player continues to innovate. The Australian manufacturer just announced a new firmware update. The 2.0 update adds over 25 new features to the already powerful device. All RØDECaster Pro will be able to update free via a download. One that I’ve been anticipating since the beginning is the new Transfer Mode, which finally allows accessing the RØDECaster Pro’s internal recordings from an external computer, instead of having to “sneaker-netting” the microSD card. Ahead you’ll be able to watch a video and read about all of the improvements.

Link to my prior RØDECaster Pro articles and audio recordings

Click here to access my prior RØDECaster Pro articles and audio recordings.

RØDECaster Pro 2.0 video

The above video is supplied by RØDE. The RØDECaster Pro costs US$599 (B&H link).

RODECaster Pro 2.0 announcement from RØDE

Transfer Mode

One of the most common requests RØDE has had from users is the ability to access recordings stored on the microSD card directly from the unit without having to take the card out and putting it into a computer. That’s what the ‘Podcast Transfer Mode’ allows you to do – it essentially turns your RØDECaster Pro into a microSD card reader. (Thank you RØDE. I would have called it simply the ‘Transfer Mode’. In my opinion, the word “podcast” here is grossly inappropriate, but I am glad you added the Transfer Mode.)

To access, choose Settings > Hardware > microSD Card and enable ‘Podcast Transfer Mode’. Once enabled, the microSD card will appear in the Finder on a Mac or File Explorer on Windows. You can also use the companion app to access and manage files as before. Note that when the RØDECaster is in ‘Podcast Transfer Mode’ all other functionality is disabled.

New sound pad functionality (virtual carts)

When you download the firmware, you will notice there is a new sound pad playback indicator button on the home screen of your RØDECaster. This icon indicates (by color) which sound pad is currently playing, as well as how much time that pad has before the sound ends. If you have multiple pads playing at once, the icon will show the pad that will end soonest.

This icon is also a handy shortcut to the sound pad configuration screen. The new firmware allows you to modify settings that you could previously only accessed in the companion app, such as color-coding the pads and setting the playback mode.

There is also a new playback mode called “Pause” – this allows you to pause playback by pressing the pad. The pad will blink to indicate its paused. To resume, press the pad again. To stop, press and hold the pad.

Lastly, you can now store up to 8 banks of sounds (64 in total)! Super handy if you produce multiple podcasts or your show is very sound-focused. Keep in mind that these populate dynamically – a new bank is added each time you fill up the preceding bank.

New live broadcast features

We’ve also added a number of features for those of you who are using the RØDECaster Pro in a broadcast context – live Internet radio, video streaming and so on. These features accessed via the new ‘Audio’ screen (Settings > Hardware > Advanced > Audio).

First of all, we’ve added a few features when it comes to using the RØDECaster Pro’s monitor outputs. You can now disable the main output level control knob (Monitor Outputs > Disable Level Knob). This will bypass the level control entirely, defaulting to standard line level regardless of the position of the control knob. This is particularly handy if you are using the monitor output to feed into a recorder or live stream and want to make sure you don’t accidentally change the level.

There is also a button to automatically mute the monitor outputs when faders are open to prevent feedback when using monitors (Monitor Outputs > Automatically Mute Outputs).

Another new feature that is commonly found on broadcast consoles is the ability to switch the solo button to enable pre-fade listen mode (Channels > Enable Pre-Fade Listen). When engaged, the ‘host’ (headphone output 1) be able to will hear what is coming out of that channel at unity gain, even if the fader is completely down. This is perfect for previewing the volume or content of a channel before fading it into a recording.

Finally, the ‘host’ (channel 1) can now speak with callers on the USB, Smartphone and Bluetooth channels without the conversation being recorded or going to the monitor outputs. To enable this, press both the Solo and Mute buttons on channel 1, then both the Solo and Mute buttons on any of the channels you want to speak to (can be multiple channels if you have multiple callers).

Last but not least, the RØDECaster Pro’s audio processing engine has been tweaked to make your podcasts sound even better!

RØDECaster Pro companion app updates: Saving ‘Shows’ and Settings

One awesome new feature in the companion app is the ability to save and load ‘Shows’. A ‘Show’ is basically a snapshot of your RØDECaster Pro: settings, sounds, everything. These can be saved on your computer and re-loaded at any time in the future. Super handy if you produce a couple of different podcasts or your RØDECaster is being used by multiple people. This also means that you can load a ‘Show’ from one RØDECaster Pro to another – very useful if you have a studio with multiple RØDECasters!

To save a ‘Show’ in the companion app, head to the menu bar and choose File > Save Show. You can also save/load settings on their own (not the sounds) by clicking File > Advanced > Save/Load Settings.

Real-Time Connectivity

The RØDECaster Pro and companion app now communicate in real-time! This means that any changes made in the app will be reflected on the RØDECaster Pro immediately and vice versa. This is especially useful when using the companion app to configure the sound pads.

Factory sounds can now be restored via the app (File > Restore Factory Sounds) and the app now has the option to automatically sync the date and time between the RØDECaster and the host computer (File > Advanced > Automatically Sync Time To Computer).

(Re-)Subscribe for upcoming articles, reviews, radio shows, books and seminars/webinars

Stand by for upcoming articles, reviews, and books. Sign up to my free mailing list by clicking here. If you previously subscribed to my bulletins and no longer receive them, you must re-subscribe due to new compliance to GDPR. Most of my current books are at books.AllanTepper.com, and my personal website is AllanTepper.com. Also visit radio.AllanTepper.com.

Si deseas suscribirte (o volver a suscribirte) a mi lista en castellano, visita aquí. Si prefieres, puedes suscribirte a ambas listas (castellano e inglés).

Suscribe to his BeyondPodcasting show at BeyondPodasting.com.

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Subscribe to his award-winning CapicúaFM show at CapicúaFM.com.

Save US$20 on Google Fi, my favorite mobile telephony and data service

One of my favorite service for broadcasting live via is Google Fi. Click here to save US$20 on Google Fi, which now works on iPhone and Android. With Google Fi (covered previously in several articles), there is no extra charge for data-only SIM cards on the same account, for up to 10 devices. You only pay for the total data, and data is free after 6 GB per month. So you could be using one Google FI SIM card on your primary phone, another in a tablet or secondary phone (or third, of fourth…).

FTC disclosure

No manufacturer is specifically paying Allan Tépper or TecnoTur LLC to write this article or the mentioned books. Some of the other manufacturers listed above have contracted Tépper and/or TecnoTur LLC to carry out consulting and/or translations/localizations/transcreations. Many of the manufacturers listed above have sent Allan Tépper review units. So far, none of the manufacturers listed above is/are sponsors of the TecnoTur , BeyondPodcasting CapicúaFM or TuRadioGlobal programs, although they are welcome to do so, and some are, may be (or may have been) sponsors of ProVideo Coalition magazine. Some links to third parties listed in this article and/or on this web page may indirectly benefit TecnoTur LLC via affiliate programs. Allan Tépper’s opinions are his own. Allan Tépper is not liable for misuse or misunderstanding of information he shares.

Copyright and use of this article

The articles contained in the TecnoTur channel in ProVideo Coalitionmagazine are copyright Allan Tépper/TecnoTur LLC, except where otherwise attributed. Unauthorized use is prohibited without prior approval, except for short quotes which link back to this page, which are encouraged!

Categories
Production

Review: V-MODA BoomPro head microphone for certain headphones

The ≈US$30 V-MODA BoomPro microphone sounds great in its niche and is most similar to another head microphone I have reviewed before, the competing ModMic 5. What they have in common is that they both are designed to attach to your current favorite over-the-ear headphones, which are not included with either microphone. What distinguishes these two mics is the way they attach to your “cans”, which —in the case of the V-MODA— restricts the potential headphone candidates drastically. While the ModMic 5 attaches to practically any over-the-ear headphone using a self-adhesive magnet system, the V-MODA BoomPro ingeniously snaps onto any of the few over-the-ear headphones which have a removable 3.5 mm TRS cable. This greatly simplifies the overall cabling system while making a non-invasive attachment. Let’s explore how the connectivity works, power requirement and listen to a test recording, three ways.

 

The headphones shown above are not included with the BoomPro.

Standard cabling and connection options

As I explained in the introductory paragraph, the ≈US$30 V-Moda BoomPro (Amazon linkB&H link) completely replaces the factory-supplied cable that came with your favorite over-the-ear headphones, as long as it’s removable. The BoomPro’s own cable is now in charge of everything, including the headphones and the microphone, which is neater than the competing ModMic 5 solution, despite the included accessories to minimize the cable bulk. That’s why the BoomPro’s cable terminates in a TRRS. With that TRRS plug, it will work directly with those smartphones and tablets that still include an analog connection, as well as many laptops. (See my 2015 article TS/TRS/TRRS/TRRRS: Combating the misconnection epidemic.)

 

The BoomPro also includes an adapter to separate the combined TRRS plug into discreet TRS for the stereo headphones and mono microphone, which is delivered as a two-channel signal for compatibility with most stereo inputs.

 

I attached the BoomPro to my current favorite over-the-ear, brandable headphones, the US$69 CB-1 from Status Audio (Amazon link) which I reviewed in January 2018, and I really love the combination.

 

If you need a much lower-cost headphone with removable 3.5 mm to use the BoomPro, consider the “renewed” Corsair HS50 (shown above) for about US$25 (Amazon link). This headphone actually includes a removable microphone, where the microphone is rated poorly, and the headphone is highly rated. If I recall correctly, I actually discovered the Corsair HS50 from a happy user of the BoomPro. The idea is to purchase the Corsair HS50, remove the poor microphone and install the much higher quality BoomPro in its place. I have never tested the Corsair HS50 so far.

Power requirement

The BoomPro mic is an electret condenser and requires bias voltage (aka “plugin power”) which is 3-5 volts and is supplied by most non-balanced mic inputs nowadays.

 

It’s also supplied by the RØDE SC6-L interface for Apple devices with digital Lightning inputs (iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch), which I have covered in many articles. If you want to connect the BoomPro to one of the mic inputs on the SC6-L, you’ll actually need the adapter to separate microphone and headphone signals (included with the BoomPro), plug the headphone TRS into the middle (headphone) connection on the SC6-L. Then you’ll need another adapter to go from the TRS microphone side of the first adapter to TRRS again, since that the only type of plug accepted by the SC6-L’s microphone inputs.

How to use the BoomPro with an XLR balanced input which only supplies phantom power

 

Thanks to Francisco Javier Arbolí for modeling for this photo.

If you want to connect the BoomPro (with its included adapter from TRRS to individual TRS for microphone and headphone) to an XLR balanced input, you’ll need an active converter like the RØDE VXLR+ with belt clip (shown above, AmazonB&H, reviewed here) or the Antlion Audio XLR Power Converter (shown below, AmazonB&H, reviewed here).

 

Both of these convert high-voltage 48 volts to low voltage 3-5 volts and adapt the impedance. The RØDE VXLR+ is flat, while the Antlion Audio XLR Power Converter cuts low frequencies.

Polar pickup pattern

Like most lavalier microphones, the BoomPro has an omnidirectional pickup pattern. However, its extreme proximity to the sound source (very close to the mouth of the person speaking), the acoustic signal-to-noise ratio is high. Nonetheless, even a head-mounted omnidirectional head-mounted microphone will still pickup more of the room sound than a cardioid head mounted microphone.

Test recording

I made the test recording by connecting the BoomPro microphone into a single channel of the RØDE SC6-L interface connected to an iPhone SE, using the adapters indicated earlier in this article. I removed the blank track produced by the RØDE Recorder app using Hindenburg Journalist Pro, my favorite multitrack audio editor for conventional computers. (I have covered Hindenburg Journalist Pro in several articles.)

Below you will hear three versions of the same recording: one unprocessed (other than normalization), one with noise reduction and one with noise reduction and compression. All three are uncompressed WAV mono. Please listen with wifi or unmetered data.

 

Above, unprocessed (other than normalization).

 

Above, with noise reduction and normalization.

 

Above with noise reduction and mild compression.

Conclusions/potential applications

As long as you have (or are willing to acquire) a suitable headphone with removable 3.5 mm cable, the ≈US$30 V-Moda BoomPro (Amazon linkB&H link) sounds great (in its category and for its price) and is very flexible in terms of connection options, as detailed in the article. Although I would not recommend using the V-MODA as a main microphone in a studio, I would indeed consider it in the following audio-only or audio-with-video applications:

  • For a field interviewer to record her/his voice on an independent track, while s/he monitors the sound using the attached isolating headphones. The interviewee would be recorded with a separate, directional microphone (cardioid or more) on her/his independent track. The only time I would combine the two signals would be for a live broadcast.
  • To supply to remote guests together with one of the compatible headphones mentioned earlier, especially when it is too much to expect the remote guest to set up a microphone, clip, stand and isolating headphones and to stay “on mic” (with proper mic placement) during a broadcast, and/or when there is not a budget for the sum of a mic, stand and isolating headphones for remote guests.

Image credit

Many images of the V-MODA BoomPro in this article are courtesy of V-MODA.

Related article

(Re-)Subscribe for upcoming articles, reviews, radio shows, books and seminars/webinars

Stand by for upcoming articles, reviews, and books. Sign up to my free mailing list by clicking here. If you previously subscribed to my bulletins and no longer receive them, you must re-subscribe due to new compliance to GDPR. Most of my current books are at books.AllanTepper.com, and my personal website is AllanTepper.com. Also visit radio.AllanTepper.com.

Si deseas suscribirte (o volver a suscribirte) a mi lista en castellano, visita aquí. Si prefieres, puedes suscribirte a ambas listas (castellano e inglés).

Suscribe to his BeyondPodcasting show at BeyondPodasting.com.

Subscribe to his To boldly split infinitives show at Toboldlysplitinfinitives.com.

Subscribe to his award-winning CapicúaFM show at CapicúaFM.com.

Save US$20 on Google Fi, my favorite mobile telephony and data service

You can use Google Fi for your live broadcasts, using the extra coverage in the US, since it combines three networks in one service: T-Mobile, Sprint and US Cellular. Click here to save US$20 on Google Fi, which now works on iPhone and Android. With Google Fi (covered previously in several articles), there is no extra charge for data-only SIM cards on the same account, for up to 10 devices. You only pay for the total data, and data is free after 6 GB per month. So you could be using one Google FI SIM card on your primary phone, another in a tablet or secondary phone (or third, of fourth…).

FTC disclosure

No manufacturer is specifically paying Allan Tépper or TecnoTur LLC to write this article or the mentioned books. Some of the other manufacturers listed above have contracted Tépper and/or TecnoTur LLC to carry out consulting and/or translations/localizations/transcreations. Many of the manufacturers listed above have sent Allan Tépper review units, although not V-MODA so far. So far, none of the manufacturers listed above is/are sponsors of the TecnoTur , BeyondPodcasting CapicúaFM or TuRadioGlobal programs, although they are welcome to do so, and some are, may be (or may have been) sponsors of ProVideo Coalition magazine. Some links to third parties listed in this article and/or on this web page may indirectly benefit TecnoTur LLC via affiliate programs. Allan Tépper’s opinions are his own. Allan Tépper is not liable for misuse or misunderstanding of information he shares.

Copyright and use of this article

The articles contained in the TecnoTur channel in ProVideo Coalitionmagazine are copyright Allan Tépper/TecnoTur LLC, except where otherwise attributed. Unauthorized use is prohibited without prior approval, except for short quotes which link back to this page, which are encouraged!

Categories
Production

Blackmagic: new US$2495 “Pocket” Cinema Camera 6K + more

In addition to the new US$2495 “Pocket” Cinema Camera 6K with EF mount, you’ll be blown away by the new DaVinci Resolve beta 16.1. Watch the webinar and learn about the Source Overwrite, Live Overwrite, Face Detection Closeup, Sync Window (for material which lacks timecode), Sync Bin in Resolve; external timecode on the “Pocket” Cinema 4K; free Blackmagic RAW Speed Test and more.

The new “Pocket” Cinema Camera 6k is now available for preorder for US$2495 (Filmtools link).

(Re-)Subscribe for upcoming articles, reviews, radio shows, books and seminars/webinars

Stand by for upcoming articles, reviews, and books. Sign up to my free mailing list by clicking here. If you previously subscribed to my bulletins and no longer receive them, you must re-subscribe due to new compliance to GDPR. Most of my current books are at books.AllanTepper.com, and my personal website is AllanTepper.com. Also visit radio.AllanTepper.com.

Si deseas suscribirte (o volver a suscribirte) a mi lista en castellano, visita aquí. Si prefieres, puedes suscribirte a ambas listas (castellano e inglés).

Suscribe to his BeyondPodcasting show at BeyondPodasting.com.

Subscribe to his To boldly split infinitives show at Toboldlysplitinfinitives.com.

Subscribe to his award-winning CapicúaFM show at CapicúaFM.com.

FTC disclosure

No manufacturer is specifically paying Allan Tépper or TecnoTur LLC to write this article or the mentioned books. Some of the other manufacturers listed above have contracted Tépper and/or TecnoTur LLC to carry out consulting and/or translations/localizations/transcreations. Many of the manufacturers listed above have sent Allan Tépper review units. So far, none of the manufacturers listed above is/are sponsors of the TecnoTur , BeyondPodcasting CapicúaFM or TuRadioGlobal programs, although they are welcome to do so, and some are, may be (or may have been) sponsors of ProVideo Coalition magazine. Some links to third parties listed in this article and/or on this web page may indirectly benefit TecnoTur LLC via affiliate programs. Allan Tépper’s opinions are his own. Allan Tépper is not liable for misuse or misunderstanding of information he shares.

Copyright and use of this article

The articles contained in the TecnoTur channel in ProVideo Coalitionmagazine are copyright Allan Tépper/TecnoTur LLC, except where otherwise attributed. Unauthorized use is prohibited without prior approval, except for short quotes which link back to this page, which are encouraged!

Categories
Production

Audio interview with Hooke Audio founder & creator of the Hooke Verse

On Beyond Podcasting episode 16, Anthony Mattana discusses 3D binaural audio recording, distribution and consumption with me. Anthony Mattana is the founder of Hooke Audio and the creator of the Hooke Verse headset I recently covered here in ProVideo Coalition (link ahead). Listen to the audio interview ahead.

 

Listen to BeyondPodcasting here on ProVideo Coalition or subscribe free at BeyondPodcasting.com.

Read my detailed article about the Hooke Verse 3D binaural headset here in ProVideo Coalition.

 

FTC disclosure

No manufacturer is specifically paying Allan Tépper or TecnoTur LLC to write this article or the mentioned books. Some of the other manufacturers listed above have contracted Tépper and/or TecnoTur LLC to carry out consulting and/or translations/localizations/transcreations. Many of the manufacturers listed above have sent Allan Tépper review units, including Hooke Audio. So far, none of the manufacturers listed above is/are sponsors of the TecnoTur, BeyondPodcasting CapicúaFM, To boldly split infinitives or TuRadioGlobal programs, although they are welcome to do so, and some are, may be (or may have been) sponsors of ProVideo Coalition magazine. Some links to third parties listed in this article and/or on this web page may indirectly benefit TecnoTur LLC via affiliate programs. Allan Tépper’s opinions are his own. Allan Tépper is not liable for misuse or misunderstanding of information he shares.

Copyright and use of this article

The articles contained in the TecnoTur channel in ProVideo Coalition magazine are copyright Allan Tépper/TecnoTur LLC, except where otherwise attributed. Unauthorized use is prohibited without prior approval, except for short quotes which link back to this page, which are encouraged!

Categories
News

Chrome URL truncation is back, but better

Last year, I reported how the Chrome browser had started to truncate URL prefixes (both the scheme/prefix and ALL subdomains). That time, the Chrome team got numerous vocal complaints — mainly because it had then truncated ALL subdomains (not just WWW). As a knee-jerk reaction, the Chrome team immediately did a full about face (instead of simply adjusting its level of subdomain truncation at that time). In other words, last year, the Chrome team ran away like a dog with its tail between its legs, until now. Both the scheme/protocol (and partial subdomain) truncation is fortunately back with Chrome 76. This time, it’s still more severe than competing browsers, but less extreme as last year. Let’s see how this compares, why the Chrome team is less likely to get rocks thrown this time, plus my detailed observations.

In this article, you’ll learn:

  • Protocol scheme (prefix) truncation
  • Subdomain truncation
  • My observations as a website creator/webmaster/consultant
  • My observations as an internaut (web consumer)

 

Read the full article here.

Categories
Post Production

Adobe Rush adds fast/slow motion with pitch compensation

Although it is not yet clear whether Adobe has fixed any the issues we previously exposed (link ahead), the company just released a new feature for its intriguing, multiplatform cam/editor app called Premiere Rush. That new feature is called Speed, as in fast or slow motion, not amphetamines. The Speed feature allows velocity ramping and audio pitch compensation. I haven’t yet been able to test this feature (or to test whether Rush now records its raw audio in proper native 48 kHz). Ahead are videos and details about the Speed feature and a link to my prior articles.

Link to my prior Rush articles

I am extremely intrigued with Rush, especially since it is multi-platform (Android, iOS, Mac, Windows). However, the list of compatible Android models is still very short, and currently doesn’t include my original Google Pixel XL.

Here is a general link to all of my Rush articles, and here is one to Adobe Premiere Rush: 5 immediate corrections required, where I credit Cielo de la Paz of the The Storyographist for her collaberation.

Information provided by Adobe

Slow Down and Speed Up Clips in Premiere Rush!

Slow down or speed up footage, add adjustable ramps, and maintain audio pitch — speed in Rush is intuitive for the first-time video creator, yet powerful enough to satisfy video pros who are editing on the go.

Basic speed adjustments

Speed adjustments in Rush are quick and simple. We use a percentage value to display speed, where 100% is real time. Values below 100% result in slow motion, and values above 100% create fast motion.

To adjust the speed, simply open the speed panel, select “Range Speed,” and drag the slider.

Skimboarding with a GoPro HERO 7 in San Francisco, California.

You can also tap on the speed percentage next to the slider and enter a specific value.

The classic “dronie”, capture in Florida (US).

Speed ranges

Speed ranges allow you to adjust the speed within a specific section of your clip.

To create a range, drag the blue handles on the clip in the timeline or in the speed panel under “Range.” The speed outside of your range is 100%, while speed inside the range is adjustable.

Pro tip: As you drag the range handles, Rush will display the particular frame where the speed change takes full effect. This is handy as you can select the exact moment that you want your speed change to occur!

Ramping

To progressively speed up or slow down in or out of your range, enable ramping. This helps smooth out speed changes which might otherwise seem jarring.

According to Adobe, Rush is the first mobile editing app with adjustable speed ramps.

Speed ramps are .5 second by default, however ramp length can be adjusted to any value!

Duration adjustments

For precise control, you can manually set a clip’s duration. After setting the duration, Rush will do the math and adjust your clip speed to the appropriate value. This is especially useful for timelapses.

A dramatic sunset timelapse, shot over Lake Erie (Cleveland, Ohio USA).

Maintain pitch

Adjusting the speed of a video clip often has drastic effects on audio, but not in Rush.

Typically, speeding up footage will raise your audio’s pitch (think mouse voice), while slowing down footage will lower it (think of a deep robot voice). “Maintain pitch” in the speed panel takes care of this by preserving the original pitch of your audio at any speed! It’s enabled by default, but can be turned off if you prefer.

#madewithrush

The new speed panel offers quite a bit of creative control, and as with everything in Rush, your speed adjustments will transfer seamlessly when opening your Rush project in Premiere Pro.

The Adobe Premiere Rush team is very excited to see what you create, and request that you tag #madewithrush and #premiererush.

Skimboard video clip shot by Andreas Tjotjos.

(Re-)Subscribe for upcoming articles, reviews, radio shows, books and seminars/webinars

Stand by for upcoming articles, reviews, and books. Sign up to my free mailing list by clicking here. If you previously subscribed to my bulletins and no longer receive them, you must re-subscribe due to new compliance to GDPR. Most of my current books are at books.AllanTepper.com, and my personal website is AllanTepper.com. Also visit radio.AllanTepper.com.

Si deseas suscribirte (o volver a suscribirte) a mi lista en castellano, visita aquí. Si prefieres, puedes suscribirte a ambas listas (castellano e inglés).

Suscribe to his BeyondPodcasting show at BeyondPodasting.com.

Subscribe to his To boldly split infinitives show at Toboldlysplitinfinitives.com.

Subscribe to his award-winning CapicúaFM show at CapicúaFM.com.

FTC disclosure

No manufacturer is specifically paying Allan Tépper or TecnoTur LLC to write this article or the mentioned books. Some of the other manufacturers listed above have contracted Tépper and/or TecnoTur LLC to carry out consulting and/or translations/localizations/transcreations. Many of the manufacturers listed above have sent Allan Tépper review units. So far, none of the manufacturers listed above is/are sponsors of the TecnoTur , BeyondPodcasting CapicúaFM or TuRadioGlobal programs, although they are welcome to do so, and some are, may be (or may have been) sponsors of ProVideo Coalition magazine. Some links to third parties listed in this article and/or on this web page may indirectly benefit TecnoTur LLC via affiliate programs. Allan Tépper’s opinions are his own. Allan Tépper is not liable for misuse or misunderstanding of information he shares.

Copyright and use of this article

The articles contained in the TecnoTur channel in ProVideo Coalitionmagazine are copyright Allan Tépper/TecnoTur LLC, except where otherwise attributed. Unauthorized use is prohibited without prior approval, except for short quotes which link back to this page, which are encouraged!

Categories
Post Production

Apple Pro Display XDR 6K: the questions I asked Apple

I first covered the Apple Pro Display 6K back in June (link ahead). In addition to its amazing performance and specs for its price (and its available matte option!), the Apple Pro Display XDR is the first time I recall ever seeing an Apple display which officially supports non-integer framerates (in addition to integer framerates). This I love! On the official web page, it says that the Apple Pro Display XDR supports: 47.95 Hz, (which I prefer to call 47.952 Hz, but that’s okay), 48.00 Hz, 50.00 Hz, 59.94 Hz and 60.00 Hz. Obviously, 47.952 is 2x of 23.976, 48 is 2x of exact 24, 50.00 is 2x of 25 and 59.94 is 2x of 29.97. But wait a minute…

Link to my June introductory article

Here is a link to my June introductory article, Apple unveils modular Mac Pro + optional matte or glossy display.

Those 2x versions I covered in the introductory paragraph are great, and it’s the only way human beings can watch 23.976, exact 24, 25 or 29.97 due to persistence of vision: We wouldn’t be able to stand the flicker at the original, lower framerates. That’s why all 24 fps has always been projected in analog movie theaters by repeating each frame twice via special repeating shutters in movie projectors, maintaining the original cadence.

To my knowledge, the Apple Pro Display XDR demonstrations made at WWDC last June were all directly connected to the Mac Pro. Here are my three questions.

  1. For many years (if not since the beginning), the macOS Display Control Panel has lacked non-integer framerates like 23.976, 29.97, 47.952 and 59.94 Hz. Their lack of existence has been among the only remaining reasons why there has still been a need for third party interfaces from manufacturers like AJA and Blackmagic, especially for projects that use non-integer framerates. Is it safe to assume that this is about to change with macOS Catalina (i.e. Catalina will show non-integer framerates, hardware dependent), or will apps like Final Cut Pro X now override the macOS output refresh rate for the output selected?
  2. Either way, will that be fully (or partially) supported by all Macs that support macOS Catalina? Can you provide a list of Mac models and supported framerates?
  3. If this is going to be overridden automatically by an app like Final Cut Pro X based upon the framerate of the current project, will this macOS call be made available to other developers who create video editing software for macOS?

I’ll either update this article or publish another one, depending upon how long it takes to get a response from Apple.

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FTC disclosure

No manufacturer is specifically paying Allan Tépper or TecnoTur LLC to write this article or the mentioned books. Some of the other manufacturers listed above have contracted Tépper and/or TecnoTur LLC to carry out consulting and/or translations/localizations/transcreations. Many of the manufacturers listed above have sent Allan Tépper review units. So far, none of the manufacturers listed above is/are sponsors of the TecnoTur , BeyondPodcasting CapicúaFM or TuRadioGlobal programs, although they are welcome to do so, and some are, may be (or may have been) sponsors of ProVideo Coalition magazine. Some links to third parties listed in this article and/or on this web page may indirectly benefit TecnoTur LLC via affiliate programs. Allan Tépper’s opinions are his own. Allan Tépper is not liable for misuse or misunderstanding of information he shares.

Copyright and use of this article

The articles contained in the TecnoTur channel in ProVideo Coalitionmagazine are copyright Allan Tépper/TecnoTur LLC, except where otherwise attributed. Unauthorized use is prohibited without prior approval, except for short quotes which link back to this page, which are encouraged!

Categories
Production

Review: Plugable USB-VOX studio microphone

My evaluation of the ≈US$75 USB-VOX studio microphone from Plugable involved several happy surprises, beyond its high quality sound for voice. Before its arrival, I knew that it’s a condenser type mic with a cardioid pickup pattern, and that it’s USB-only (which is great for some situations, not for all); that it came with its own table stand, and is also compatible with professional boom arms like my Heil PL2T. However, I had no idea that it would excel in several other aspects, despite one missing feature for some users.

Published specs, with my comments

 

The manufacturer (Plugable) really understates the ≈US$75 USB-VOX microphone (Amazon link), by publishing that it only offers 44.1 kHz audio sampling frequency. In reality, the USB-VOX microphone is much better than that, since I discovered it also offers 48 kHz audio sampling too, as shown in the above screen shot. For those who haven’t yet read my recent article 48 kHz: How to set it in Android, iOS, macOS and Windows, the Audio MIDI Setup in macOS is the place to discover a device’s capabilities and change among them on a Mac. (That article also covers how to do it with other platforms.) That setting in the Audio MIDI Setup commands the A-to-D (analog-to-digital) converter in the external USB microphone or interface to change to 48 kHz mode. The Audio MIDI Setup would not show the option of the 48 kHz option if the connected hardware didn’t offer it.

48 kHz audio sampling is essential to be used in the video world, and based upon my recommendations in the 48 kHz Alliance, in the audio world too, for reasons that go beyond the quality difference. That’s why I am so glad I agreed to review the USB-VOX, despite the incomplete information on the Plugable website about this microphone (at least at publication time of this article).

 

Above, the published pickup pattern.

Here are the rest of the official specs:

  • Element: Polarized Condenser
  • Polar Pattern: Cardioid
  • Chipset: C-Media CM6400
  • Frequency Response: 20 – 16000 Hz
  • Bit Depth: 16 bit (confirmed by me)
  • Sample Rate: 44.1 kHz (and 48 kHz, added by me)
  • Power Requirement: USB (5V DC)
  • Weight: 258 Grams
  • Overall Body Dimensions: 140 mm long | 52.0 mm body diameter
  • Connector Type: USB…

 

I’ll add the USB details: The microphone has an onboard USB-B connector (the type often found on printers), and includes a long 305 cm cable that goes from USB-B to USB-A, the most common one on most computers on the market. Th USB-A end can be adapted with an inexpensive adaptor to USB-C if required (which foreshadows other good news in the next section).

Compatibile platforms: another happy surprise

The manufacturer, Plugable, states that the USB-VOX works with Linux, macOS (where I did my published test recording) and Windows. To that list, I will add that I successfully used the USB-VOX with my current Android phone, which is a Google Pixel XL running the beta version of Android Q (aka Android 10), using the free Auphonic app for Android (my review here), and it worked perfectly well with 48 kHz audio sampling. (My latest iOS Auphonic review for iOS is here.) All I needed to connect it was the USB cable that came with the USB-VOX and the USB-C to USB-A female adapter that came with the Google Pixel XL phone. Your results may vary depending upon your particular phone/tablet model and operating system.

Included accessories

  • USB-B to USB-A cable, 305 cm (described earlier)
  • Mount with standard 5/8″ thread
  • Adapter to reduce the 5/8” thread to 3/8” (which I have never needed to use so far, but is useful for some cases)

Sound test and more happy surprises

All below files uncompressed mono WAV file at 48 kHz/16-bit. Please listen with unmetered data. All were recorded and trimmed in mono 48 kHz to Hindenburg Journalist Pro, and normalized to -16 LUFS.

Above, USB-VOX unprocessed, other than normalization to -16 LUFS.

 

Above, after mild noise reduction from Hindenburg Journalist Pro.
Above, after mild noise reduction and dynamic compression (not file compression) from Hindenburg Journalist Pro.

I am extremely impressed at how good the recordings sound for about US$75, even the unprocessed one.

I am also impressed since I was able to use it without any plosives (popping) issue, without the need of any pop filter or windscreen. This is very unusual when using most cardioid mics up close, even when addressing them at a 45-degree angle. I am also impressed how low self-noise the Plugable USB-VOX (Amazon link) has (even before processing) and how well it rejected background rumble, especially considering that it’s a condenser microphone. It might sound crazy, but the isolation of this Plugable USB-VOX reminded me of the RØDE Broadcaster (which costs US$419, reviewed here, AmazonB&H) and the Audio Technica AT875R (which costs US$169, reviewed here, AmazonB&H), since they have been among the very few condenser type mics I have ever tested that isolate background rumble so well, when all of them are addressed very closely. In that sense, these exceptional microphones have the extra frequency response, clarity and high output level of a condenser type mic, while having the isolation advantage of a dynamic mic. This does not mean that the USB-VOX sounds the same as the others, but it does mean that it isolates as well (when used in equal proximity) and it does sound very good for its price.

However, sound quality and isolation are not the only issue when selecting a microphone. There are other factors, as you’ll see ahead.

Advantages & disadvantages of a USB microphone

As I have clarified in other articles, USB microphones are really analog microphones with a built-in A-to-D or analog to digital converter. The advantage is simplicity to connect to a computer (or sometimes to a tablet or smartphone), especially when there is going to be a single microphone and the purchaser doesn’t already own a high-end interface (preamp + A-to-D converter), so no extra equipment must be purchased in order to connect it.

Multiple USB mics to a single computer?

Despite popular myths, it is indeed possible to connect multiple USB microphones to a single computer, using software that specifically allows for that, like Hindenburg Journalist Pro (see my many articles here), Sound Siphon (covered in these recent articles) or Audio Hijack. Some of these programs even allow recording multitrack from each USB mic, where each microphone is recorded on an independent track for maximum control in post production.

 

However, despite those possibilities, there are challenges —and solutions, as I covered in Monitoring challenges when using multiple digital USB mics simultaneously (illustrated above).

What can’t you do with a USB (only) microphone?

You can’t connect a USB (only) microphone to a conventional camcorder, HDSLR or mirrorless camera. You also can’t connect it to a conventional audio recorder, or audio/video recorder. But there are indeed situations where a USB microphone is best for the application, especially when there is a single microphone to connect to a computer (or phone or tablet).

Lack of onboard monitoring

Most radio announcers and voice talent I have met (but not all) prefer to monitor themselves “live” as they record or broadcast, to perform instant evaluation and quality control. For those who want that function, it should be direct and virtually latency free, since hearing ourselves with a slight delay and can be both distracting and fatiguing. One of the closest recommended USB mics in this price range that indeed includes onboard latency-free monitoring is the Samson Q2U (reviewed here, AmazonB&H). The Q2U is different both because it’s a dynamic (not condenser type) and because it’s hybrid, with XLR in addition to USB. However, since the Q2U is so sensitive to plosives, I only recommend the Q2U together with the A81WS presidential windscreen, and that total price (≈US$93) goes higher than of that the ≈US$75 USB-VOX (Amazon link).

Of course, depending upon the project, you can record yourself and then immediately verify the playback. However, even if you don’t want to hear yourself live, you will still want to wear either isolating headphones or earbuds/IFB when dealing with other people remotely, to avoid feedback. That is feasible when using the USB-VOX microphone with conventional computers, although the 3.5 mm jack is gradually disappearing from many of the latest models of smartphones and tablets, so I hope Plugable will add latency-free monitoring to its next USB microphone model.

I’’ll discuss this more in the Recommended uses and Conclusions section, ahead.

Lack of 24-bit resolution

Although it is great to have 24-bit resolution audio (see my Understanding 24-bit vs 16-bit audio production & distribution), it is not a must and not really expected in a USB microphone at the ≈US$75 price point. It just means that it’s more important to set the ideal volume level as precisely as possible at the beginning, before starting the broadcast or recording.

Image credits

Some of the images in this article are courtesy of Plugable.

Recommended uses & Conclusions

The Plugable USB-VOX has a lot going for it for only ≈US$75 (Amazon link) when used quite closely, at a 45-degree angle: high voice quality, great background rumble isolation, pop resistance and 48 kHz sampling frequency. Its only critical missing feature (onboard latency-free monitoring) will be a dealbreaker for the portion of potential purchasers who demand it. As a result, my recommended uses for the USB-VOX are for those who don’t like hearing themselves “live” in these applications:

  • Audiobook production
  • Remote co-hosts and interviewees on online radio shows (including podcasts)
  • Skype/Hangouts
  • Webinar co-panelists

For most of those, they should use either isolating headphones or earbuds (plugged into the computer/smartphone/tablet that has a 3.5 mm output) to hear the other participants remotely, without feedback. The host or audio engineer can do the quality control for them and advise them, when required.

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FTC disclosure

No manufacturer is specifically paying Allan Tépper or TecnoTur LLC to write this article or the mentioned books. Some of the other manufacturers listed above have contracted Tépper and/or TecnoTur LLC to carry out consulting and/or translations/localizations/transcreations. Many of the manufacturers listed above have sent Allan Tépper review units, including Audio-Technica, Plugable , RØDE and Samson. So far, none of the manufacturers listed above is/are sponsors of the TecnoTur , BeyondPodcasting CapicúaFM or TuRadioGlobal programs, although they are welcome to do so, and some are, may be (or may have been) sponsors of ProVideo Coalition magazine. Some links to third parties listed in this article and/or on this web page may indirectly benefit TecnoTur LLC via affiliate programs. Allan Tépper’s opinions are his own. Allan Tépper is not liable for misuse or misunderstanding of information he shares.

Copyright and use of this article

The articles contained in the TecnoTur channel in ProVideo Coalitionmagazine are copyright Allan Tépper/TecnoTur LLC, except where otherwise attributed. Unauthorized use is prohibited without prior approval, except for short quotes which link back to this page, which are encouraged!

Categories
Production

48 kHz: How to set it in Android, iOS, macOS and Windows

After creating the 48 kHz Alliance this year and several prior articles, an increasing number of people now ask me how to set our standard 48 kHz audio sampling rate in Android, iOS, macOS and Windows. Ahead is all of the information, and why to never open GarageBand on macOS, since it silently violates the system without our consent or knowledge and cruelly resets all hardware to 44.1 kHz, damaging the use of other innocent apps. Ahead are more details.

Related articles

Setting 48 kHz audio sampling in Android

With Android, no system level change is required. Some intelligent Android apps are 48 kHz exclusive, including Hooke Audio Binaural 3D Audio (reviewed here). Other apps allow us to select 48 kHz manually, including:

When connected digitally to a device, the setting in the app (or the app’s 48 kHz exclusivity) commands the external hardware device (i.e. microphone or interface) connected via USB to set its A-to-D (analog-to-digital) converter to 48 kHz.

Sadly, some Android apps are currently stuck on 44.1 kHz and should be avoided until upgraded to 48 kHz capability.

Setting 48 kHz audio sampling in iOS

With iOS, no system level change is required. Some intelligent iOS apps are 48 kHz exclusive, including:

Other apps allow us to select 48 kHz manually, including:

When connected digitally to a device, the setting in the app (or the app’s 48 kHz exclusivity) commands the external hardware device (i.e. microphone or interface) connected via Lightning to set its A-to-D (analog-to-digital) converter to 48 kHz.

Sadly, some iOS apps are currently stuck on 44.1 kHz and should be avoided until upgraded to 48 kHz capability. These include:

  • Adobe Rush (Adobe Rush officialy supports 48 kHz, but makes the initial recording at 44.1 kHz and then upsamples. Cielo de la Paz of the The Storyographist and I documented this in this article. It was later recognized by an Adobe product manager at NAB 2019 in Las Vegas as a bug.)
  • Backpack Studio (whose developer has committed to adding 48 kHz sometime soon, in an email to me)
  • the iOS native Camera app
  • Ferrite
  • GarageBand

Setting 48 kHz in macOS

In macOS, in addition to setting it into the recording app, it is also essential to set the devices to 48 kHz in the Audio MIDI Setup (called Configuración Audio MIDI if your macOS is in Castilian, aka “Spanish”), which is located in the Utilities folder. After you open the Audio MIDI Setup, select the devices from the left column.

In the above screenshot, Dispositivos de audio means Audio Devices.

Then set 48 kHz from the pulldown menu from both the device’s input and output, if it exists. Some devices are in only; others are out only, while many offer both. For best results, do the same with the Mac’s built-in mic and built-in output too.

 

Note that only device’s true hardware capability is shown in the pulldown menu, which is why some devices offer more options than others. For example, the RØDECaster Pro (covered in several articles) is exclusively 48 kHz, 24-bit stereo, so there is nothing to change in the Audio MIDI Setup. In those cases, it’s just displayed information.

Setting 48 kHz in Windows 10

I don’t use Windows at present, but fortunately, Microsoft’s Vanessa Yar documented it for us in 2017:

…follow these steps to get into your speakers Advanced settings:

  1. Right-click the Speaker icon in your system tray and click Playback devices.
  2. Select your speaker, then click Properties.
  3. Click the Advanced tab.
  4. Click the drop-down and it will show you the sample rate and bit depths options as shown in the photo below:
  5. You can adjust it according to your preference. Once done, click Apply, then OK.

Source: here.

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Save US$20 on Google Fi, my favorite mobile telephony and data service

Click here to save US$20 on Google Fi, which now works on iPhone and Android. With Google Fi (covered previously in several articles), there is no extra charge for data-only SIM cards on the same account, for up to 10 devices. You only pay for the total data, and data is free after 6 GB per month. So you could be using one Google FI SIM card on your primary phone, another in a tablet or secondary phone (or third, of fourth…).

FTC disclosure

No manufacturer is specifically paying Allan Tépper or TecnoTur LLC to write this article or the mentioned books. Some of the other manufacturers listed above have contracted Tépper and/or TecnoTur LLC to carry out consulting and/or translations/localizations/transcreations. Many of the manufacturers listed above have sent Allan Tépper review units. So far, none of the manufacturers listed above is/are sponsors of the TecnoTur , BeyondPodcasting CapicúaFM or TuRadioGlobal programs, although they are welcome to do so, and some are, may be (or may have been) sponsors of ProVideo Coalition magazine. Some links to third parties listed in this article and/or on this web page may indirectly benefit TecnoTur LLC via affiliate programs. Allan Tépper’s opinions are his own. Allan Tépper is not liable for misuse or misunderstanding of information he shares.

Copyright and use of this article

The articles contained in the TecnoTur channel in ProVideo Coalitionmagazine are copyright Allan Tépper/TecnoTur LLC, except where otherwise attributed. Unauthorized use is prohibited without prior approval, except for short quotes which link back to this page, which are encouraged!