Podcast Studio Equipment - Intermediate Setup

The Intermediate Studio Equipment setup listed below is nearly identical to that described in the Basic Setup, with the exception of an upgraded mixer and microphone and related hardware.  This studio will accommodate a host, up to five in-studio guests, plus additional channels for Skype/Hangouts interviews, CD/tape/cellphone inputs for sound effects and music.


1x - Electro-Voice RE320: This is the studio mic of my dreams. I have a really powerful baritone voice which tends to overload some microphones. This one can really handle my low frequencies with ease. I would buy 6 if I could, but the Behringer XM8500 seems fine for my guests.

1x - Mackie ProFX12v2 12-Channel Professional FX Mixer with USB: I still love and use my "Mini-Mackie" (402VLZ4) but when I got a gig where I was interviewing a group of 5 people, I got this one, too. It has 6 microphone inputs and the famous Mackie "built like a tank" quality, but it also features a few bells and whistles you might appreciate such as a built-in USB interface to record your show or provide music playback, a 7-band stereo graphic equalizer, and an effects engine with 16 great-sounding effects like reverbs, delays and choruses.

1x - Headphones: To monitor the sound in the mixer, you'll need decent headphones. I really like my Sony MDR-V300 series -- warm sound and an extra long cable so I can walk around without taking them off. But... they're not available through Amazon in Canada. I like the Sony MDR-7510 Professional Studio Headphones (with 50mm drivers!), but if you need something good and basic, check out these Sony MDRZX100 Series Stereo Headphones.  You can also use your own pair of headphones, if they include a 1/4" plug or adapter.

6x - Behringer XM8500 Dynamic Cardioid Microphones: While there is much debate, these microphones compare favourably to the Shure SM58, particularly when cost is factored in.  They have a warmer low end than the SM58 that sounds wonderful for speech and they cost a fraction of the price. Impossible to resist, and I didn't. Zero regrets.

2x - 5 Pack-Microphone Ball-Type Sponge Windscreens/Foam Covers - Black: To prevent (or at least minimize) P-pops, you'll need to cover the mics with these. Why a 5-pack? They are cheaper to buy as a pack than individually, and you won't have to worry if one tears or gets lost. 

6x - CBI MLC20 Low Z XLR Microphone Cable, 20 Foot: Some mics come with a cable, but good ones often don't.  You'll need these to connect the XM8500s to the mixer. Twenty feet is a bit long, but I found these to be of fair price and good quality, and maybe I will need the extra length someday. For podcasting, I keep them coiled up, with a foot loose on either side.

6x - Samson MD5 Desktop Microphone Stand: These are a wonderful, sturdy, solid metal microphone stands, but are incredibly pricey. I got mine on sale. If the Samsons are full price, or still too expensive at sale price, check out this comparable stand from On Stage, instead. Boom stands and scissor-arm stands are also a possibility, but my studio was designed for easy setup and easy tear-down.

1x - Monoprice 3-Feet 3.5mm Stereo Male to RCA Stereo Male Gold Plated Cable for Mobile, Black : This is used to connect the Tape Out connectors on the mixer to the microphone input on your computer, to record the audio. Not long enough?  Order a 6-foot length instead.  If you opt for a USB mixer, you don't need this.

1x - HOSA Stereo Mini Male to Phone Y-Cable, 3 Feet Optional. This cable can be used to bring sound in from your smartphone. On Toddcast, I use this type of cable to bring Skype call sound into the mixer, and I talk back to the caller using the built-in mic on the phone. Simple. There is a more complex technique called mix-minus that uses two cables, and I won't bore or confuse you with it.

If you can find a cable like this cheaper at local music or electronics store, buy it there instead. I bought a 6-foot version from Long and McQuade for $11. I've included the HOSA brand cable as an  example, or for your convenience if you'd rather just order multiple items from Amazon than store-hop.

Audacity (FREE!)

Questions? Comments? Leave me a note!