Plenty of podcasters go out and buy fancy microphones, only to use them improperly. This can be discouraging, especailly when they hear good recordings made with the same equipment and wonder what they are doing wrong.
I’ve been told a number of times that the sound quality of my podcasts rivals that of NPR. Yet, for almost all of of my interviews, I use microphones that cost far less than $100, and for Boston Behind the Scenes, I usually use a mic that cost me $15!
What’s the secret? Not fancy post-processing or editing, but simple microphone placement. This isn’t hard, but it ususally needs to be taught.
The simple lesson is this: put the mic to the side of the speaker’s mouth, and as close as possible without picking up unwanted noise. The distance varies from setup to setup, but a good rule of thumb is that a foot is almost always too far away.
Here’s a little demonstration video (I’m not a video guy, so go easy on me!):