Unfortunately we won’t be able to get a show out this week. I hope that those of you who observe the Easter holiday were able to spend it with your families as we did. We’ll talk to you next week.
We now have access to G+ Hangouts On Air! Drop us in a circle if you’re interested in taking part in a round table discussion.
You asked and we have provided. You can now easily find past episodes on the site or in an RSS feed using the provided Archive categories and the links to the archive RSS feeds.
Just below the “Contact” section on the site are links to the archived episodes grouped by year. Clicking on any of the archive links will direct your browser to display the RSS feed for the group of episodes. Depending on your podcatcher and browser, you may see links or options right on the page to subscribe without having to take any further steps.
In most cases, however, you’ll likely need to copy the URL from the address bar in the browser and paste it into your podcatcher. Most podcatchers and RSS readers will require similar enough steps. Below you will find instructions for subscribing to the feed in iTunes.
If you have any problems or questions, get hold of anyone at The Pace Podcast by sending email to Feedback @ The Pace Podcast. We’ll do whatever we can to help.
Chris here. I’m suffering from NVS: no voice syndrome. It comes from having the worst cold in recorded human history.
Ok, it’s probably not quite THAT bad, but between my not feeling great and James’ traveling this past week, we opted to not rush in a show knowing we would deliver a rushed, sub-par offering.
Look for a new show with new content next week, including more feedback (keep it coming!), and a segment from Joanne Donn, The Gear Chic.
Thanks for your patience.
Chris & James
Referenced in Episode 91, this is Brett Byers’ KLR amidst the Montana backdrop.
Excellent pic, Brett. Thanks so much!
We were recently honored with a guest appearance by motorcyclist, author and riding safety expert David Hough. After a great discussion (and an open invitation to return), Mr. Hough gave us a couple of signed copies of his book Proficient Motorcycling to give away to the listeners. This book, updated with new content in the book and on disc, is among the best known and most well regarded on the subject of safe and quality operation of a motorcycle.
So, how can you score one of these signed copies of Proficient Motorcycling? Well, one of two ways.
First, we’re looking for a newer rider to tell us your story of how you got started in motorcycling, some mistakes you might have made, some problems you might have encountered, and of course help and guidance you have received since starting out. Everyone has a beginning story, and we want to hear yours, now, as it’s happening.
Second, we’d like to hear the same kind of stuff from ‘seasoned’ riders. Tell us about how your riding and outlook, and your “toolbox of skills” have matured over the years and miles. Talk to us about how something you see happen now that you just deal with, might have been a ride stopper or bigger problem in your younger, greener years.
The best story – as judged by James and Chris – from each category will win a signed book. “Best” can be the most engaging narrative, it could be an example of the toughest learning curve, it could mean the most experience in the shortest time, or anything else. There’s no real hard definition for this. Just tell us your stories, share with the community and let’s all learn something.
The contest will run for a little over two weeks, ending on April 16, 2011. You can email your entry to firstname.lastname@example.org with “contest” in the subject line. Also, if you would prefer to send us an audio file that we can include in a future episode, you can send an MP3 as an attachment to the same email. Our voicemail is limited to three minutes, but if you think you can tell your story in that time, then by all means, call 484-748-0042.
We look forward to hearing from you!
Hey guys, Chris here.
For the time being, my personal & work-from-home laptop is also my main recording and post-production computer for the podcast. Since this is my do-everything system, my desktop and my application dock get pretty crowded and busy.
This computer is a 2nd(?) generation MacBook with an intel processor running Mac OS/X 10.6, aka “Snow Leopard”.Â Being a Mac, you have to think differently about organizing your apps than you might if you were using a Windows system; there is no Start menu/button.
Rather than continue crowding my dock with audio and video production app icons, I decided I would actually take them all out of the dock and move them to a fly-out menu on the ride side of the dock, using the alias metaphor. The folders and fly-outs on the right side of the dock are a fairly recent addition to Mac OS/X (I believe) and it becomes a very powerful mechanism for grouping and organizing.
Quick note: Application icons in Mac OS/X are actually representative of the application folder on disc, and are generally not alias or shortcut icons. Because of this, you want to be very careful about just dragging application icons around. You might end up dragging hundreds of megs of application files to a different location, and you run the risk of making the application no longer run. The good news is, most of the time if you do accidentally move an app icon to a location other than the Applications folder, you haven’t really broken anything. Dragging it back is a non-issue.
So, without further ado… adeau… adieu… without further delay, here are the steps and the results of those efforts.
Thursday night James and I and our two guests recorded a show at my house. The rig we used consisted of my Macbook for recording, my Blue Yeti for ambient sound, two Shure Sm58 and two Radio Shack dynamic mics, Yamaha mixer and XLR connections for all mics. With the understanding that there’s a bit of a noise floor from the USB mic that in comparison to the regular levels was very low, I’m very pleased with the sound.
Any real “noise” in the recording you’ll hear are just the sounds of four people having pizza and beer and sitting around a table together talking about bikes. Sometimes Todd’s or Jeff’s mic was a little hot while they really got in there to make a point, but I tried to keep on the levels and keep everything leveled.
I’m happy with it, and of course the content was a lot of fun, visiting with the guys was great and hey… we got to sit around BSing all evening about riding.
So what could be bad about that?
I noticed over the last year that no matter what mic I was using I was getting an increasing amount of noise in my side of the show’s recordings. Some times it’s less noticeable in terms of relative noise levels and volumes, but there was a constant hiss. The commonality was using the USB interface on my Macbook. That was the common part whether I was using my pro-level M-Audio audio interface, a direct USB mic or a gaming headset. The noise was there and at times, very distracting (at least to me in post production editing).
My Logitech headset is pretty cheap and low-end, so I expected it to by noisy and sloppy. My microphones, however, are both decent quality units – a Samson C01-U and a Blue Yeti. Part of the problem is that using good quality condenser microphones is a sure way to highlight and exacerbate any noise floors you have. Over the past few shows I was recording in a newly-emptied bedroom and between the condenser mic’s ability to pick up room noise, echo and the omnipresent noise on the interface, I nearly trashed the whole recording for a couple of shows and went without.
Ultimately, I didn’t and was happy that we got the shows out, but even a guest spot that James and I did on the Rant-Fu podcast made me sound like a rank amateur with the crappy sound quality. This was all doubly frustrating as I’m not a newcomer to audio engineering; back in high school I spent some time working at a recording studio, and I was involved in the A/V at school and with the bands for which I was playing. I generally know my way around equipment. But hey… “it’s just a hobby podcast, so who cares, right?”
Uh… no. That mindset only carries you so far, especially since, for me, this isn’t just a hobby podcast. This is something about which I’m pretty passionate and I truly love doing.Â So… it’s time to step up my audio quality.
First things first, I unpacked my used Shure SM58 dynamic mic, I found a used but good Yamaha 10-channel mixer on eBay (as well as a used and dirt-cheap Behringer Xenyx 802 mixer that’s still in the shipping box) and I wired it up. I tinkered around with the settings and figured out how to set up the mixer for one and several mics and other line-level inputs. I got it all wired up so I can do Skype mix-minus recordings on the computer or, eventually, perhaps to some external digital recorder.
Once I figured out that the mixer I have will do what I need, I sold my M-Audio pro interface. It’s entirely overkill for our needs and for 1/5th the price of the M-Audio, the Yamaha mixer is perfect for my needs. I have several other dynamic mics for when I host guests here at the house, and frankly doing multiple mics on the M-Audio was never just as simple as it could (should?) have been. The Yamaha is much simpler and more intuitive. Plus, the extra money is nice.
Now, for most of the shows, even the mixer is overkill. Most of the time, all that’s necessary is the mic, the computer and me, as James and I record the shows over Skype from our respective homes. With that in mind, I also found an ART tube mic pre-amp on Amazon for crazy cheap. This will allow me an even simpler interface – nearly as simple as using the USB mics – for most of the shows, but without the increased noise of the condenser mics and USB interface. Win.
And yes, Mr. Ravenscraft, I *do* record into a computer. I don’t have a spare $200-$400 laying around for the Edirol. Yet!
So, this is a long-winded way of saying I’m sorry about the recent crappy sound quality and starting with our first show of 2011, my end of the recordings should sound much, much better in terms of noise and general sound quality. I can’t do anything about my crappy voice, other than suggest you buy ear plugs.
Happy New Year everyone, and we look forward to more great shows and community interaction in the Near Year.
It has become apparent that the listeners choose to interact with the show’s hosts and guests via Email, blog comments and, most notably, on the show’s Facebook page at http://facebook.com/ThePacePodcast.
In light of this, The Pace Podcast has chosen to no longer participate in, nor support, the online forums at http://thepacepodcast.com/forums, and will be taking down the forum software some time in the next few weeks.
A redirect page will be posted in place of the forums to direct traffic to the show’s Facebook page. Some of the information will be pulled from the forums and posted on the show blog for the sake of archiving.
If you have a specific topic or discussion thread on the forums you would like to see archived, please contact the show hosts at email@example.com with a link to the thread in question. If possible, the thread’s contents will be posted and archived.
This should not be perceived as any sort of problem with the show. This is simply a matter of concentrating the attention and interaction with the listeners where it makes the most sense, and where the listeners choose to interact most.
As always, thank you for listening and supporting the show.
Chris & James
The Pace Podcast