Love the Podcast. Turn It Up!

Friday, January 7, 2011 - 7:19 am

Love the Podcast. Turn It Up!

I’d like to give a shout out to Danny from Tennessee who emailed the show about our podcast levels. He noticed that our show was significantly quieter than some of his other favorites. Turns out that he was right, and we’re going to do something about it.
There are a surprising amount of steps involved in creating the final podcast you get on your mobile device, all of which occur after the final audio is produced for the broadcast version of the show. Believe me, I wish we could produce the show like we would for a CD, giving the listener the best possible experience. Unfortunately, in the world of the podcast, file size and download speeds as well as the myriad of playback devices are limiting factors with which we wrestle while trying to preserve audio quality.
To add to that, we attach a bunch metadata to the audio including the carefully designed album art and descriptions that accompany each episode. So, long story short, in an attempt to provide more complete and interesting metadata, On Being has taken a different route through APM’s normal podcast encoding software. By doing manually encoding and adding information to the file, we are able to create a better experience for our online listeners.
What we didn’t realize was that our audio was doing an end around some processing that would boost the levels to match our parent company’s other shows like Marketplace and The Splendid Table.
Sometimes, innovation can have unintended consequences, but thanks to feedback from our listeners, we’ll keep trying to raise the bar in all aspects of our show. Keep listening and, by all means, keep telling us what we can do better!

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is the cofounder of On Being and currently serves as chief content officer and executive editor. He received a Peabody Award in 2007 for his work on “The Ecstatic Faith of Rumi” and garnered two Webby Awards (in 2005, and again in 2008). The Online News Association nominated his journalistic work multiple times in the general excellence and outstanding specialty journalism categories. Trent’s reported and produced stories from Turkey to rural Alabama, from Israel and the West Bank to Cambridge, England.


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