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NC #681 Audio-Technica NAB, App Switcher Display, GDPR Notice, Electric Quilt, Explore Bike Share, ecobee Switch+

Thanks to our fabulous contributors, we’ve got a full-length show this week. We’ll start with the last audio interview from NAB, this time with Audio-Technica about their microphones and headphones (we use both!). Then I have a Tiny Tip about how to fix a problem with multiple monitors on your Mac. I’m trying to be like all of the other cool kids, so I’ve done GDPR work on Podfeet just because it’s the right thing to do. Sandy Foster brings us a review of an app called Electric Quilt. I’ll tell you how underwhelming it was to attempt to rent an electric bike via Explore Bike Share. Joe Dugandzic tells us about a new voice assistant-capable lightswitch from ecobee called the Switch+. Finally, George from Tulsa tells us about an incredibly inexpensive computer he recommends called a NUC running Linux.

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NC #676 Polaroid ZIP Mobile Printer, Vitec Imaging, Hindenburg Journalist, mimoLive

Next week the SMR Podcast guys are in charge of the show (good luck with that) so there won’t be a live show till May 6th. This week we’ve got a review of the Polaroid ZIP Mobile Printer done on location in Belgium with Peter Boodts, we’ve got two interviews from NAB: Vice Imaging about their Manfrotto grip for the mobile videographer and Hindenburg Journalist, the software I use for recording the NosillaCast. Then I’ll tell you about a crazy tool called mimoLive from Boinx Software that Steve and I are using to produce the live NosillaCast.

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NAB 2018: Hindenburg Journalist

Allison interviews Preben Friis and Chris Mottes from Hindenburg Systems about their Journalist digital audio workstation software. Hindenburg Journalist is a multitrack audio editor designed for podcasters, audio producers, and radio journalists. Journalist’s design and features are tailored for spoken-word productions and its focus is on storytelling. Journalist is an end-to-end digital audio workstation that allows the creator to 1) record voice & interview, 2) add sound & music, 3) organize the material, 4) edit the audio, and 5) publish the content. The setting is NAB Show floor in the Las Vegas Convention Center. Learn more at https://hindenburg.com/

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All the Cool Kids are Moving to Discord

Discord logoSometimes I think that the Podfeet Podcasts are just an elaborate ruse to allow me to try out new gadgets and software. It is most evident in how I can’t seem to stop refining how I produce both the recorded and the live show. If you’ve never taken a look at the live show diagram, it’s worth a peek to see the madness. It needs to be updated a bit as a few things have changed, but the fundamental structure of it is still the same.

What never changes though is my desire to swap out one tool for another. In fact, that’s why it’s out of date!

Usually I’m trying to solve a problem, but sometimes I experiment with a tool just to learn about it to find out if it solves any problems. In the last couple of weeks I’ve started playing around with a tool called Discord. Discord is a free, dedicated app for the Mac, Windows, Linux, iOS and Android, as well as a web-app from discordapp.com. If my early testing is right, it could replace a lot of apps for me, reduce the complexity, and make it easier to connect with people for Chit Chat, all while actually giving you an enhanced experience during the live show.

I’d like to walk through just a few pieces of my workflow (and how they impact the audience) before I come back to Discord. Continue reading “All the Cool Kids are Moving to Discord”

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Allister’s Journey from Castblaster to MiX16 Pro

Sitting duck podcast logoThis piece started out as a simple review of one piece of software, but as I began writing, I realised it’s one of those times where a bit of storytelling is in order.

Some listeners will know that I once had a podcast of my own. Technically, I still do, but it’s a pretty rare release these days. I started right around the same time Allison did but instead of tech, my podcast was about music.

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Dumb Question Corner – What’s the Difference Between an Amp and a Receiver?

Gen 4 Apple TVListener Jill sent in a great dumb question this week, and Allison decided that I was more qualified to answer. Here’s Jill’s question:

What is a “receiver”?

The reason for my question is, Apple told us at WWDC that the 4th gen Apple TV could be used as a destination for Airplay 2 (multi-room audio). But the 4th gen Apple TV has no audio out, so how can that work? I don’t want my TV screen lighting up every time I want to play a podcast! Well, I asked around, and I got told “You need a receiver that offers HDMI connections”. Hence my question. So … what is a “receiver”? Also, supplementary question – why is it called a “receiver”? I have a good old fashioned amp, because I’m nearly as old as you are. I get amps: sound sources go in; you choose one, adjust the volume, job done. You can’t buy them any more – just these receiver things, and since I never got on that train, I haven’t a clue where to start asking about them.

Good question, Jill. You actually pose a couple questions. The first is “What is a receiver and why is it called a receiver?” and the second (implied) question is “How do you play audio from a gen 4 Apple TV?”

Let’s start with what is a receiver and why is it called a receiver. There are several types of receivers but the relevant ones for this discussion are an audio receiver and an A/V (audio/video) receiver.

Continue reading “Dumb Question Corner – What’s the Difference Between an Amp and a Receiver?”

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Rogue Amoeba – the Gold Standard

Lately I’ve run into a slew of tech problems, finding bugs in just about everything, hardware and software. This has given me the “opportunity” to compare reactions of companies when I tell them about the problems. I would normally write a huge diatribe about those that didn’t meet my expectations, but instead I’m going to tell you about the gold standard in support. That company is Rogue Amoeba, the makers of Audio Hijack.

I’ve talked about Audio Hijack quite a bit on the show, but to bring everyone up to speed, it’s the absolute center point to how I create the podcast. Audio Hijack, as the name implies, hijacks the audio on your Mac, allowing you to route it in interesting ways.

Audio hijack complex sessionI create the podcast recordings completely without a complicated hardware mixer. With Audio Hijack I can capture the audio of a Skype call and my voice on two separate tracks, add effects like an equalizer and a compressor. I can route the audio back to my headphones so I can monitor my own voice for any problems along with that of my partner on the show. I can also send the audio to a recorder to capture an uncompressed audio file. Audio Hijack is essential for the creation of the Podfeet Podcasts.

Continue reading “Rogue Amoeba – the Gold Standard”

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NC #620 Apple Watch Swimming, Standard Mac Apps, BrainPort Visualization Through the Tongue, eSight Low Vision Glasses, Non-tech Podcasts, GhostReader, BeatsX

Allister here standing in for Allison this week. I have a miniature review of using the Apple Watch Series 2 for swim workouts, I’ll quickly review 26 Mac Apps you didn’t know you already had, Allison will pop by with two more videos from the CSUN Assistive Technology Conference, I’ll make some recommendations for podcasts you might want to listen to that aren’t about technology, Terry delivers on his callout from Allison with a review of GhostReader text to speech software, and I’ll finish up with a review of the BeatsX Bluetooth earbuds with Apple W1 chip.


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BeatsX In-ear Bluetooth Earbuds with Apple W1

BeatsX Bluetooth earbudsI have long preferred in-ear earphones for two very important reasons. First, it’s just not possible to get a decent bass sound from lightweight earphones without creating a seal in the ear canal, and as my hearing is more sensitive to high frequencies, I need all the bass I can get, otherwise they sound feeble. Second, my typical listening environment is “out in the world.” I listen to podcasts or music on my 40 minute commute. This involves riding a train with other (sometimes noisy) commuters, and walking in a city with people and cars and buses and construction and wind. I tried EarPods for one day of commuting and confirmed that these two reasons are very good ones not to invest in AirPods, as cool as they are.

When Phil Schiller announced the AirPods, he also announced a few other products which would use the same W1 chip technology. The Beats Solo3 on-ear earphones would be an interesting proposition, but not for commuting –they’d be too bulky for me. The Powerbeats3 are a sport-style in-ear earphone solution. I’m not a fan of the over-ear hooks which secure these, and with their “sports” features, such as water resistance and an incredible 12 hour battery life (which I wouldn’t need), the price goes up, making them the most expensive of the in-ear products. That just leaves the cheapest product which includes the W1 chip – BeatsX. These are in-ear, designed for comfort, and last 8 hours on a charge. Continue reading “BeatsX In-ear Bluetooth Earbuds with Apple W1”

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