Love Bites: On Audio Equipment

This month’s columnist measures their love of audio storytelling through her haul of podcasting equipment

Article by Halina Rifai | 19 Jan 2022
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There’s something deeply emotional and wonderfully satisfying about creating audio that you are not only proud of, but that connects with people. Then comes the addiction.

My love of podcasting started 12 years ago. It was a means for me to express and promote other people and the things I was passionate about without the need to show myself. My social anxiety and self-body shaming is a constant in my life, and audio meant freedom.

Being a woman in audio can have its challenges, so learning things in my own time and on my own terms has been the biggest reward. But as my confidence has grown, so has my hunger for consumption. Software, gear (steady…), techniques… you name it, I am obsessed.

From 2009, the year I fell in love with podcasting, I can measure my life in sonic equipment:

1. First came a laptop with Audacity (FREE software!).

2. I was feeling braver and richer so next came the Zoom H4N, a handy portable recorder with unidirectional condenser microphones (which basically means the sound is decent).

3. There were fleeting relationships with lavalier microphones, which have popped into my life again like a forgotten friend, and some low-end dodgy microphones, comparable to those cringe relationships you would rather forget…

4. Then came the companions. Firstly, Rode have seen me take out a new pension fund with them. Their Procaster mic is broadcast quality, their Rodecaster Pro console is a gamechanger for those invested in podcasting. I have more USB mics than half empty mascara sticks: Rode, Blue Yeti and the latest is the Shure MV7.

This is a snapshot and while sonic rehab is calling, it’s been a life-changing investment. But, it’s important to remember that at the centre of all of this is the content, the smorgasbord of sounds and the voices of people. Without that, my love (and equipment) would be nothing.
Follow Halina on Twitter @halinarifai