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Podcasting with iChat

Using GarageBand and iChat for podcasting By Stephen Schleicher

One of the great things about creating podcasts with GarageBand 3 is the ability to record multiple people at once.  The bad thing about GarageBand 3 is that unless the audio signal is panned everyone gets recorded to the same track.  That is unless everyone has iChat.  With this instant messaging application everyone gets their own track instantly.  In this quick tutorial, Ill walk you through the steps.

When I read GarageBand 3 would recognize an iChat conversation and record each participant separately on their own track I knew this feature would make interviews and co-hosts coast to coast possible.  It is really easy to set up.

Step 1:  Launch iChat and GarageBand.  It doesnt matter which one you launch first just as long as they are both open.

Step 2:  From the GarageBand start screen select Podcast and name your show.

Step 3:  Wait for all your friends to sign on to iChat, make sure they all have their microphones hooked up, and then initiate a voice chat. 

The good thing about iChat is your friends do not need an iChat account (or a Mac for that matter) for this to work.  If they have AIM with voice, then you are good to go as well.

Step 4:  Once all of the participants have joined the conversation, click the record button in GarageBand.  GarageBand will display a message letting you know it has detected the conversation and will record everything.

Click Yes and you are ready to go.  It is really that easy.  But as a word of warning, make sure everyone in the conversation is aware you are recording the conversation.  You dont want to violate any wiretapping laws?

Step 5:  Once you click the Record button, each participant will occupy his/her own track in the GarageBand timeline.  This is perfect as you will not have to worry about audio from each of the participants being mixed together making it impossible to edit, or apply effects to.

Another nice feature the iChat icon of each person is placed in the Podcast Track.  Now when you export your podcast, the image can switch back and forth between hosts/guests. 

Of course if you dont want to use those images, you are free to substitute your own.  For more on how to add images into the Podcast track, make sure you read this article.

Another benefit of the love between iChat and GarageBand happens if you need to stop and then continue recording again maybe to get a quick pickup or rerecord a flubbed line GarageBand will record all new information on new tracks.

Again, this makes it so much easier to edit the show later.

Finally, if you plan on using Radio Sounds during your podcast, make sure you have the record button for that track active before pressing the main record button.

Step 6:  When you are done recording your show, hit the Play button to stop everything, and you are free to disconnect from your iChat conversation.

Step 7:  Edit the show and add music.

Step 8:  Export and post your show.

There are many single host only podcasts out there.  I find that the more successful shows have more than one host or guests are brought in to discuss the shows topic.  By using iChat and GarageBand together, there is no need to get an external mixing board, yards of audio cable, or a kludge to get Skype to work effectively.  This is a great solution for those podcasters wanting a quick and easy way to record multiple people.

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Stephen Schleicher is a well known writer, visual effects artist and media guru! You can see more of Stephen at
www.majorspoilers.com and www.stephenschleicher.com
Related Keywords:podcast, podcasting, ichat, garageband 3, apple, creation, images, record, schleicher

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