The headphones are great, mind you I’m not an audio expert, but they sound excellent, they are certainly comfy and won’t break the bank when you can pick certain designs up for around £30 (RRP £50). I was surprised that they come with a detachable cable that includes an in-line mic/controller, whilst this is great from my iPhone it can play a little havoc with some systems such as my PC or Blue Yeti whereby I have to just retract the plug ever so slightly to hear the audio fully.
Certainly a worthy investment for the podcasts.
I am loving the Blue Yeti. Not only a great sounding Mic but one that has far more features than anything in the same price range and below. Hear a quick comparison between the Samson C01U and the Blue Yeti here – http://vocaroo.com – it does not do the microphone justice, I certainly don’t regret the purchase.
So what features does it come with? Well a good length of USB cable and one hell of a funky stand with rubberised base to support what is one chunky mic! (and great to attach a pop filter to)
- On the front
- Mute button – so useful!
- On the rear
- Adjustable gain
- 4 pattern setting
- Stereo – main pick up from front and sides, vocals and instruments
- Cardioid – main pick up from front, singular speaker for podcasts
- Omnidirectional – all around, focus groups
- Bidirectional – front and rear, interviews across the table
- micro USB connection (no drivers required!)
- headphone 3.5mm jack – zero latency audio monitoring
- 5/8 inch threaded hole for microphone stand
What don’t I like? well not a lot to be honest…
- Its a bit of a beast – it appeals to me but don’t think it will be a joy to carry around
- The microphone has a tendency to either damage its own paintwork or that of the stand – if you look at second hand ones they mostly mention slight “mic vs stand” knocks (mine does but it on the stand.
- Volume and gain controls feel a little loose
- No ideal shock mount – Blue’s own Radius shock mount is expensive (at £44) and does not support its own mic (Search YouTube) and there is little alternatives out there due to the unusual base layout. (see unavailable custom mount at Amazon http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00HL5WWHQ )
Full specs can be found here http://www.bluemic.com/yeti/#specs
I think maybe a project for the summer would be to make a shock mount and publish the designs as a blog?
Pebble, looking to not lose pace with other smart watches, have returned to Kickstarter ( click here ) to crowd fund the Pebble II – Titled the Pebble Time – which is already near to completion unlike when the first Pebble needed funds to develop. with Projected shipping May 2015. New features to include:
- 64 Colour screen
- Microphone lets you send voice replies to incoming notifications or take short voice notes.
- Pebble Time is 20% thinner than the original Pebble at just 9.5mm.
- Ergonomic, curved design fits comfortably on either wrist.
- Scratch-resistant Gorilla Glass with a bezel made of stainless steel.
- Like our previous watches, it’s water resistant – perfect for a run in the rain, water-balloon battle or a swim.
- All new Pebble watch bands include a quick-release pin, letting you swap bands in under 10 seconds.
- Publishing the 3D data you’ll need to create amazing straps, covers and docks.
- Pebble Time also has a smart accessory port, enabling hardware developers to build sensors and smart straps that connect directly to the watch.
- Pebble Time comes in three colours: Black, Red, White
- New timeline interface interaction – your notifications, news, reminders and events are laid out chronologically instead of being trapped inside separate apps.
- £199 TBC
And the best bit? Timeline will work on Pebble and Pebble Steel (exact date TBD) so my watch gets an awesome update in the near future!
The first podcast episode has now gone live, I always thought it funny when you hear actors who never watch themselves on TV or in their own films, I so get it now!
I debated on making show-notes but I think I am going to go against that, as most of my content will be about this blog anyway, maybe I will do an overview of any guests that are on the podcast. The show notes from this podcast are effectively in “About…. the Blogger” at the top of this blog.
Each episode to be released by the end of the first full week of each month.
Once you have set up your podcasts and they sit online (my previous post outlines LybSyn) you will need to submit to iTunes. Well that’s if you want to be found on iTunes!
View your RSS feed by selecting VIEW FEED button to the right of “LybSyn Classic Feed” (rss) under DESTINATIONS > EDIT OR VIEW EXISTING. Copy the URL (web address) then open up iTunes. in iTunes select Podcasts and then iTunes Store (top of podcasts page). You will find “submit a podcast” on the far right. Once clicked on this all you will need to do is past in your copies RSS feed address.
Do not expect your podcasts to show up on iTunes right away, as an idea my timeline was as follows:
- Tuesday evening – submission
- Thursday evening- approval
- Friday morning – Searchable on iTunes (within two days of approval)
So my podcasts are fully green-lit, with the intention of releasing in the first full week of each month from now on.
I have looked into numerous ways of how to syndicate my podcast (effectively a way of advertising your new podcast to other systems such as iTunes) :
- Webpage: you have to manually edit an XML form to create your RSS feed, and its likely your web space provider will not like the high bandwidth that podcasts demand
- WordPress: it’s going to cost you £70 per month and then its needs you to set up a category for your posts then set up an RSS feed through a third party service such as feedburner
- LibSyn: an all in one solution that takes care of all the woes, and the one I have gone for in the end
Create an account, a variety of plans exist (See Here), I choose the entry plan, 50mb a month, as I am currently only looking to podcast once a month for twenty minutes (this works out to about 30mb for a 20 minute MP3 File).
Upload your first podcast (CONTENT>ADD NEW EPISODE). Include a title, subtitle and description (it’s worth noting that tags/keywords are no longer used by iTunes so try and include these in your subtitle and description where possible). Review the rest of the fields – they may not all apply to your podcast.
Edit the “Lybsyn Classic Feed” (rss) under DESTINATIONS > EDIT OR VIEW EXISTING, this includes iTunes store basic information such as catagories (x3), subtitle and summary, content rating, author, contact email and finally “use show image for episodes”- otherwise it will may be rejected by iTunes.
next post – iTunes Submission!
I have finally recorded the first podcast, it’s a huge learning curve. The first advice I would give is make sure you have a brief script to run with, otherwise you add more “Um’s” and “Er’s” than you might be able to cope with. Write down your running order and your opening and closing lines as well a segment links, this will lend some consistency to future podcasts and help keep familiarity with your future audience. Then fill in with content.
Although I had a piece of audio I had created awhile back I revisited it to make intro, outro and bumper audio clips that felt more in tune with what I had recorded, as well as a looping “bed” piece just-in-case.
I have hit about 22 minutes worth of recording, but with edits and addition of music clips, I have come out at about 21 minutes. Not bad considering I was only going to produce an introductory podcast!
Next step syndication and iTunes….
Last week was one of those of coincidence. I came across the following instructional video on YouTube http://youtu.be/WcB3s8KOk4w last Wednesday and the use of a embroidery/punch needle/cross-stitch hoop – I have never seen one of this these anywhere. On Thursday I found myself travelling from Essex to Barnsley for an elearning meeting and lo-and-behold next to me was a young lady with one of the same hoops. Mind Blown!
I hate to say it that this tablet has killed the Surface RT for me. The full Windows 8.1 (no RT!) tablet with a seriously docked keyboard is a fun and great locking bit of kit, whilst not as high spec and definitely plasticky (is that a word?) it still looks and feels good. At 32gb internal memory it does most things that I disliked about the Surface RT:
- You can install stuff, woop woop! so hello iPlayer, VLC player, Zip 7
- You can prop it up on your lap, no flappy keyboard
- The keyboard feels like a keyboard
- It’s one hell of a serious dock mechanism
- Serious 11 hour battery life
- Micro USB charge port
- A full USB port and a usable Micro USB port – usefule with an adapter to full size
- I don’t use a mouse with this device, unlike the Surface RT, as the keypad has a good feel to it
OK, so as ever onto the hates:
- It is stroppy in regards to charging – it likes good quality cable and occasional hates high powered chargers – liking the odd slow charge
- It’s screen size is smaller than the Surface RT and not as good quality, the Surface RT has a certain clarity about it
- No rear camera
- It does come with Office 2013 – Word, Excel, PowerPoint but this does not include Outlook
- This one is the killer… you cannot back up and delete the restore image to USB like you can on the Surface RT. Effectively giving you only 10gb of workable storage so although I can install I am loath to!
I have favoured this over the Surface RT though (as much as it pains me to admit, I just wish it was the 64gb version!