Simplecast doesn't do normalization or other audio processing related to volume level, but you can (and usually should) normalize your podcast episode using the audio app you use to edit and mix your podcast.
Here are some tutorials to help you normalize your audio tracks:
- Normalizing with Audacity
- Normalizing with GarageBand
- Normalizing with Reaper
- Normalizing with Logic Pro X
- Normalizing with Audition
Most audio programs like Audacity, GarageBand, or Logic Pro X will give you the option to normalize your audio when you're exporting it to create an MP3 file. You should use that feature.
There's also a great web app for normalizing audio and removing background noise: Auphonic.com. They will process up to two hours of audio per month for free.
Tips and tricks to help you make sure your podcast is loud enough
There are a lot of things that affect the loudness of a podcast, including the input gain levels of the raw recording, how much compression and limiting you do, and whether or not you normalize when you export your raw audio into an MP3 file.
If you're using a pop filter, staying 3-6 inches away from the mic, and speaking at a comfortable volume level, set your input gain levels (this is usually done with the input gain knob on your USB mic or audio interface) so that your input gain meter in your recording software shows the loudest peaks of your audio hitting -16 to -12 db on average.
After that, use a compressor to lower the dynamic range of your track and add some additional gain to it, then use a limiter to make sure the loudest peaks of your audio tracks don't hit the top of the meter and clip.
For a more detailed video tutorial, watch this Youtube Video.
How to set your listening level while mixing a podcast
Here's the tricky part; changing the volume level on your computer doesn't change how loud your podcast actually is. If you have your headphone volume cranked up, your podcast will sound louder, but it will be quieter for other people.
So how do you set your volume level so you can hear how loud your podcast really is while you're mixing it?
Listen to music at a comfortable volume level, then switch over to your editing software.
You can check your podcast volume level against Spotify or Apple Music while you're mixing your podcast; play a song in your music app at full volume, and set the output volume of your computer to a comfortable listening level (not super loud).
Your podcast should sound roughly as loud on average as the music. That's a quick and easy way to set your headphone or speaker volume level for mixing your podcast.
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