On Air with The Bellingham Podcast (Workflow Update 2/2018)

year end 2017

Update 2/2018

Ver: 2.0

Now relaunched under “The Bellingham Podcast.” All new look, branding kit, and available on Podcast and locally on KMRE 102.3FM (LP) twice a week.

The Setup

Radio was once reserved for those who had the knowledge, the license, and the equipment. Fast foward to the age of the internet, an our globe became seemingly smaller as everyone gained access to the technology to talk to anyone anytime. Podcasting, or netcasting, came on the scene as a way for creators to host independent shows and deliver it a wide general audience. No licensing, no need for expensive equipment, and always available at the push of a download button to the listener. A fanastic platform, providing anyone with the opportunity to speak and be heard.

“I am a kid of the airwaves. Growing up in a family of amateur radio operators (ham radio), I’ve been on a mic talking to people around the globe since before I knew where on the globe I was talking to.” -AJ Barse

The Rant

Six years ago, I was the podcast-runner of LNPR, Lummi Nation Podcast Radio. Since joining WWU, for the last three years, I’ve been wanting to do another show. One evening, a get a call from my friend and colleague Chris Powell. As geeks often do, we get onto the topic of tech as we both are technologist, and ranting about barriers in tech and learning. That rant alone would have made for an interesting show…hey, there was thought.

Out of that rant, a new year’s resolution was struck. To at least pilot a podcast episode together, it might be fun meshing our personalities together on the mic. The goal would be trying to use as little “pro” gear as possible. Meanwhile investigating the concept of mobile recording, producing (if possible), and having fun sharing our Bellinghamser-ness, and un-geeking tech topics as they would arise would became our show topic.

The Workflow

img 3745 edit
Current workflow diagram: Ver 1.3


Ver: 2.0

Now relaunched under “The Bellingham Podcast.” All new look, branding kit, and available on Podcast and locally on KMRE 102.3FM (LP) twice a week.


Ver: 1.3.1

Now editing the show using Garageband 10. Syncing up tracks can be more precise as the amount waveform zooming is greater. Found “legacy” supported effects from old iLife 2011 in app. Investigating mobile editing on iOS (Garageband on iOS not a viable option due to measure limitations and our show is too long).

Ver: 1.3

A gripe arose as I worked with the “latest and greatest” Gargenband 10. This Logic like version of GarageBand is great app for musicians, but not great for narrators or podcasters. What was removed was any and all narration features from Garageband (iLife 2011) such as ducking (or sidechaining), where tracks would automatically duck under the queued or featured track.


Ver: 1.2.1

After each recording, we AirDrop (or Dropbox) our audio so I can bring it back to a MacBook Pro to sync, duck, and normalize the audio and post to the web. This could be done on iOS Garageband, but the app is just not as robust as the desktop app. But in a pinch it would work (but would require manual sjidechaining).

Ver: 1.2

The hosts need to hear each other as too add a little more dynamic vocal flair as they record. Off of the MV5 mics we are equipped with is a standard headphone jack to monitor yourself as you record. We’ll have to combine these outputs so that both of us can hear ourselves and each other. A $10 five-port headphone sharing hub is what we use to join our audio outs live. As long as we don’t overdrive our volume, it works well.

Ver: 1.1

We now would have to record separately. Shifting our production workflow, we now went to each host had a mic and a iOS device. Adding a “film clapper” style intro to the beginning to each mic would allow us to sync our audio in post on Garageband on iOS or on a Mac for that matter. In our case, each device is its own “track” that we will sync up in post. Now recording each mic sepratly posed a new production quark; how to get live low-latency recording monitor from both devices while recording separate?

Ver: 1.0

The workflow was a simple thought, adapt BYOD into a multitrack recording setup. The initial thought was to hook up two mics to an iPad and hit record in iOS GarageBand- this quickly became NOT the case. In a traditional production with a multi mic setup, you can run each mic through a breakout box or, if USB, each mic into its own chanel and record each mic live and separate. I found out, the Lighting connector is not like USB.iOS’s Lighting is a “daisy chain” style protocol. Think back to days of Firewire where we would connect each drive together (daisy chained) and then had a single Firewire cable connect back to the Mac. Lightening acts the same way. If you use a Lighting to USB hub with multiple USB ports, the first device plugged in will be the only device that works. And, at the time of this post, I don’t know of any Lighting device available, mic or otherwise, that allows you to interconnect devices to have several devices work together working through the single Lighting port on iOS.


The Gear

  • Shure MV5
    • Part of the new MOTIV line by Shure. A mic that I think stacks up against the Blue Yeti, but lighter, cheaper, and can natively do PC, Mac, and iOS (and supplies the proper cables for each). It is a MFi certiced device, so iOS automatically knows what it is and what app to launch upon first plugging it in to your iOS device. The MOTIV app, allows the user to record uncompress (and can convertert recorded audio to lossless AAC or compress formats), and can make recording available on the device’s Photos app (as a movie) or the audio files can be shared by way of AirDrop or Dropbox (etc). 
  • 5 Way Headphone share (splitter/joiner)
  • Headphones
  • iOS device of choice.


The Show

BPM: Tech [iTunes link]

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Bellingham Podcast: Ep 3 on location