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How to make something sound old?

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pliddi
1118611.  Sun Feb 15, 2015 4:22 am Reply with quote

Dear Elves,

How is possible that the smartest bunch of elves records the dodgiest old sounding podcast on the interwubs!?

I love your podcast. But unless you are using twine and tin can's just for kicks, then the tinny audio quality is very difficult to understand.

Cheers,
Peter

 
CharliesDragon
1118652.  Sun Feb 15, 2015 7:21 am Reply with quote

The earliest podcasts had some sound problems, but if you have a lot of trouble understanding the recent ones, the problem might be on your end.

 
Posital
1118678.  Sun Feb 15, 2015 11:30 am Reply with quote

So I suppose the question is, pliddi - How do you make something sound old?

Let us know how you did it...

 
pliddi
1118721.  Sun Feb 15, 2015 5:51 pm Reply with quote

Perhaps a good question indeed..

Lets do some digging.

'No such thing as a fish' (NSTAAF), even the latest episodes, sounds super compressed - like listening to an old audio tape.

I use 'Pocket Casts', a podcast subscription and download app.

NSTAFF is the only podcast that sound like this - going from say "99% Invisible" by Roman Mars to NSTAFF is quite stark. Which is why I cringe when I switch to one of your podcasts.

So, its not the app.

Is it the podcast? Downloading both episodes off the web:
99%Invisible - 128kbs 44kHz - 15MB - 16 minutes
NSTAFF - 44kbs 22kHz - 13MB - 37 minutes

(oh it sounds so bad.. am jumping between "This is 99% invisible, I'm Roman Mars.." to NSTAFF ep.43 - "Hello guys, before we start this podcast..").

Think that solves it! Should have just looked at the source first. The high frequencies - noticeable in female vocals - sound like digital clipping, because it is.

Listen to a music track with a cymbal (you know, drum kit cymbal) at the NSTAFF audio settings and you will hear exactly what I'm talking about - it sounds like a trash can lid.

Am not attacking the elves! This isn't middle earth and I'm not an orc (or a troll). Can totally understand not applying gobs of production values before knowing if the podcast will be popular.

Suggestion - up the quality, track downloads over a month, see if you deviate from present trend. (am saying 'trend' instead of 'reduce' as there's likely a steady week on week increase - who knows, download rate might go up!).

The 13MB podcast will be 30MB. Will that clog the intertubes? Other podcasts suggest it won't - have you checked out Hardcore History by Dan Carlin?

Speculation aside, could be a fun experiment!

I love your work and really think this will make a positive difference.
Cheers

 

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