Audio Tools, Techniques & Tutorials for Radio
GENERAL ON-LINE RESOURCES
- AIR: what's a tape sync and how do I do it?
- B-Side Radio … notes on how to record, write, voice and edit for radio
- CBC Outfront … radio documentary tutorials.
(See also the section Courses of Study in Audio Documentary.)
- how to interview for radio.
- writing for radio.
- sound gathering and equipment.
- basic glossary of some radio terminology.
- Cornell Lab of Ornithology
- don't let this fool you: making wildlife recordings employs many of the same sound gathering principles of radio journalism and documentary work.
- comprehemsive equipment guide, field recording techniques and a Knowledge Base of recording resources.
- fyi: features an online, searchable animal sounds audio catalog.
- Free Speech Radio News: Technical and Production Guidelines
- links to info on voice and microphone techniques, as well as tech notes addressing CoolEdit (1) & (2) and SoundForge software programs for the PC.
- Historical Voices
- audio tutorials to assist you in nearly every aspect of equipment selection and production.
- Radio College: see the articles on Mastering Our Craft
- The British Library
- notes from the Wildlife Sound Archive.
- another "don't be fooled" site: making wildlife recordings employs many of the same principles of journalism and documentary sound gathering.
- features hints, tips and recording equipment recommendations.
- This American Life
- includes Nancy Updike's advice for better radio writing, and Bill McKibben's "The Pen Is Easier Than The Mic."
- tutorials for recording and editing (for the application Pro Tools, click on Basic Production as well as Voice Editing). Try this for recording over the phone.
- details about the Marantz PMD-660 compact flash recorder.
- also, see Jeff Towne's Working with Pro Tools Free. (NOTE: Strictly for Mac, OS 8 through 9 -- will not work with OSX. The free version has been reported to be somewhat buggy. Downloads from the Digidesign site appear to have been discontinued with the Spring 2006 redesign of their site. )
AUDIO LEVEL COMPRESSION
- 2 types of compression & level compression explained…
- Compressors: Dispelling the Mystery, parts (1), (2) and (3), by Allan Bradford.
- Harmony Central explains compression & limiting.
- level compression basics, (1) & (2)
- level compression tutorial by Karen Kane.
- Steely Dan's engineer, Roger Nichols, addresses compression abuse.
- Supersize … using compression makes sound bigger, by Jay Rosen.
- Understanding compressors and compression by Barry Rudolph.
- Waves' Tips.
- a primer … includes "what is sound?"
- Digital Audio Primer … PDF download from Adobe Audition.
- EarLevel … for the techie in you: theory, oversampling, dither, jitter, aliasing and more.
- Managing Audio Levels … tech talk by Jim Starzynski of NBC-TV.
- optimizing sound for the Internet is a downloadable doc by Keven Siegert, The University of Arizona Health Sciences Phoenix Campus.
- B-Side Radio
- Be a Better Dialog Editor by Jay Rosen.
- CBC Outfront … includes digital audio editing (for PC only).
- Digital editing of field audio … from the Vermont Folklife Center; here's the PDF.
- Editing in Pro Tools … a nice excerpt from the book by David Franz.
- Editing in Pro Tools PDF.
- Audacity … free software for Mac & PC.
- Audacity or Audition for podcasting?, a tech opinion from WebProNews.
- Audacity introduced at Transom, and a tutorial from the Soundforge site.
- Audacity 1.2 tutorial.
- Audacity activity tutorial from the Florida Department of Education.
- basic audio editor from the independent producers at Proscenia Interactive.
- flash movie tutorial and notes from Streaming Audio Made Easy.
- Give your podcast professional polish with Audacity by Cyrus Farivar at MacWorld.
- How To Podcast, an Audacity tutorial.
- "how to" slideshow tutorial from the Rockwood School District of Eureka, MO.
- podcasting tutorial, Quicktime presentation from OurMedia.
- tutorial from Brown University.
- tutorial from College of the Redwoods.
- tutorial at Digilogue.
- recording with Audacity by Clark & Sandy.
- Sheer Audacity, a tutorial from Southeast Georgia Tech.
- slideshow tutorial from Kamehameha Schools Virtual Strategies/Distance Learning Department.
- slideshow tutorial from MSICoach training videos.
- slideshow tutorial from the online master of education program at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.
- video tutorial from KPFT.
- Video tutorials on Podcasting using Audacity, free from SeeItDoIt (Quicktime).
- Adobe Audition, formerly Cool Edit Pro … for PC only
- Adobe Audition home.
- Audacity or Audition for podcasting?, a tech opinion from WebProNews
- DVD training program.
- tutorial for speech recordings.
- Cool Edit tutorials from the BBC.
- tech notes addressing CoolEdit (1) & (2) from Free Speech Radio News.
- Pro Tools … Mac & PC
- creating and setting up Pro Tools sessions.
- Digidesign's user forums<.
- full version of Pro Tools for current Macs and PCs; see also what's an Mbox and why do I need it?
- keyboard shortcuts stickers or Pro Tools custom keyboards for Mac and Windows.
- more Pro Tools tech notes here.
- Pro Tools tutorial, from Clarkson University.
- Pro Tools tutorial, from the Multimedia Reporting and Convergence site at UC Berkeley's Journalism School.
- Pro Tools Users: news, forums and more.
- tutorials and interviews with audio pros at DigiZINE.
- understanding audio regions excerpt from Pro Tools for Dummies; download the first excerpt PDF and see the info on EQ on pages 21 thru 23.
- users of older systems such as Pro Tools v5.1: try this Sound On Sound magazine series of articles… (1), (2) and (3).
- video tutorial samples … from Apex Web Media.
- SAW … PC only.
- Sony Sound Forge … PC only.
- tech notes for this application, from Free Speech Radio News.
- Sony Vegas … PC only.
- Soundtrack Pro … Mac.
- free and paid tutorials from Lynda.com.
- Steinberg's Nuendo … PC only.
- 3dB Audio Recording Forum.
- AIR / Association of Independents in Radio … the daily discussion listserv features reporters and producers as well as representatives from NPR and other organizations. See also the seminar archives for Field Recording & ProTools Editing.
- AudioTalk Pro.
- ProSoundWeb Recording Forums.
- Sweetwater Audio Forums.
- David Isay — tutorial on making radio documentaries … an interviewing guide with equipment recommendations.
- get inside a radio documentary class at Columbia University's Graduate School of Journalism with This American Life producer, Alex Blumberg.
- How to Fund a Radio Documentary … at AIRmedia.
- see also the section Courses of Study in Audio Documentary.
EQ / EQUALIZATION:understanding frequencies and the audio spectrum…
- Equalization Basics.
- Harmony Central explains EQ.
- Home on the Ranges and companion audio samples by Jay Rosen … a demonstration of frequency ranges.
- On Golden Ears … hearing and seeing sound by Jay Rosen.
- Reliable Software … a free frequency analyzer, for Windows 95/98/2000 and NT 4.0 only.
- The British Library / Wildlife Sound Archive … microphones, recorders, tape & batteries.
- Community Media … sound gathering and equipment.
- Cornell Lab of Ornithology … equipment guide, field recording techniques and a Knowledge Base of recording resources.
- Historical Voices … microphones, recording devices and techniques.
- Marantz compact flash recorder.
- National Radio Project … suggested equipment and recording tips (see additional info below, under Programs & Producers as well as News Gathering & Reporting).
INTERVIEWING FOR RADIO
- the basics.
- The BBC's 5 Minute Guide to Handheld Mics.
- mic techniques … from Free Speech Radio News.
- which mic should I get? … from AIR.
- The BBC's 5 Minute Guide…
- Sound Professional's streamlined guide to the Sony Hi-MD: a downloadable doc.
- a better alternative: phone calls via the Internet with Skype.
- Call Recorder for Skype … $15 software.
- get good recording quality over the phone by Rich Halten.
- better sound with VoIP, from Shure.
- phone recording tutorial and notes by Henry Howard.
- phone tap and in-line patch … from JK Audio.
PORTABLE DIGITAL AUDIO WORKSTATIONS--> SEE listing under Equipment & Technology
RESTORATION & PRESERVATION
- Audio Archiving Resources from Rutgers University.
- Audio Archiving Resources from Stevens Institute of Technology.
- Audio Preservation from Stanford University features plenty of resources.
- downloadable PDF from ASC / the Association of Recorded Sound Collections.
- excellent and detailed resource for Digital Preservation Management from Cornell.
- Digitizing Speech Recordings for Archival Purposes is a downloadable PDF from Historical Voices; see also the link to a Working Paper on Digitizing Audio from the African Online Digital Library.
- Guidelines for the Preservation of Digital Heritage from the National Library of Australia, published by UNESCO as a downloadable PDF.
- how to bake your own tapes (and why).
- the LBJ Library: symposium conclusions.
SOUND & ACOUSTICS
- Acoustics Animations, by Dan Russell, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Applied Physics at Kettering University in Flint, MI.
- Acoustics Primer from Indiana University's Center for Electronic and Computer Music
- An Ear To The Earth Festival of Music, Sound & Ecology.
- Audio Forums for audio producers, editors and engineers.
- FindSounds on the web.
- Hearing is Believing: from a 1996 UK conference "aimed at people interested in experimental radio and sound art."
- hearing test products.
- Moulton Labs: one of my esteemed mentors, David Moulton truly knows the "art & science of sound."
- Physics Classroom: tutorials for understanding sound.
- Sonic Walden blog.
- "The Sound of Things To Come," by Marshall Sella, NY Times Magazine, March 23rd, 2003. See also related: the military use of "silent sound."
- test your own hearing online, by Joe Wolfe, acoustics professor at The University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia.
- WFAE / World Forum for Acoustic Ecology: concerned with the "state of the world's soundscapes."
- why you can't mix with headphones…
- World Soundscape Project libraries.
- audio conversion and stream recording.
- Audio Hijack Pro … basic studio setup.
- best bit rate for MP3s, from Shure.
- MP3 and Internet Audio Handbook
- Soundflower … pass-through application for routing audio to recording software, for Mac OSX.2.
- time calculator … instead of adding in your head or by hand.
- WireTap Pro< … records any audio to your Mac computer.
- FYI: learn how the radio spectrum works.
VOICE-OVER TIPS & TECHNIQUES
- B-Side Radio
- Free Speech Radio News
- Videomaker's sound advice
- Voicing the Story: The Art and Craft of Podcast Narration, from Poynter.org.
WRITING (AND EDITING) FOR RADIO
- AIR's Radio College
- American Meteorological Society … broadcast writing PDF.
- B-Side Radio … writing a radio script.
- broadcast writing … from Elizabethtown College.
- Community Radio
- DINFOS / Defense Information School … PDF of the military broadcast writing style guide.
- IWMF / International Women's Media Foundation … writing broadcast copy.
- Journalism.org … see Tools for TV/Radio Journalists.
- JPROF … broadcast writing style tips.
- KDRT … writing for radio: the basics.
- Mervin Block … an authority on broadcast newswriting; visit his broadcast writing cliches at Poynter.
- Newscript … newswriting for radio.
- RFI / Radio France International … writing for radio: creating with sound.
- San Jose State School of Journalism & Mass Communications.
- Switching from Print to Broadcast Writing by Gene Lenore.
AUDIO & RADIO
Radio Networks & Stations:
JOURNALISM: THE NEWS AND THE MEDIA
PODCASTING AND BLOG MEDIA
Recommended Texts for further reading