AirPods for Podcasting: Can I use AirPods to record a podcast?

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In general, I would recommend a plugged-in mic like the Yeti to your computer to record or live stream a podcast. But AirPods to record a podcast can work. No doubt.

The most important thing here is that the audio needs to sound good. I’m baffled when I hear highly-paid executives whose audio is bad on podcasts. Good mics are under $100, and even AirPod Pros, when used correctly, can get the job done.  If I can’t hear them, I can’t hear them – if you know what I mean. Their message’s impact will be diminished. Good audio is the bare minimum to a successful livestream or record a podcast. There’s only so much an editor can do with bad audio – if you even have an editor.

So, AirPods to record a podcast can work. Let me share some of my tips on how to ensure that happens. I can say that those Apple Earbuds, however, usually don’t work – especially for people with long hair. The hair will rub against the mic and make the sound scratchy here and there. Not a great experience and actually hard for people with hair to ensure it doesn’t happen.

Read next: Immerse yourself in a new world of sound with spatial audio

The technical setup

Just because the AirPods are in your ears or, likewise, the mic is sitting in front of you, that doesn’t mean the recording or streaming software is picking up the right one. Always check the input. I’ve been on episodes with guests who sounded good because a mic was nearby, but their audio was supposed to go through the AirPods. So always check, then test, then start recording or going live. Before my live streams, I usually build in a 15-minute buffer for this exact purpose – to ensure everything is working the way it’s supposed to.

In Restream, which I use to stream and record “The Business Storytelling Show,” go to the settings area once in the studio. Under Audio, check the input. In this example, it was picking up my AirPods because I was most recently listening to music through them. But I might want to use my Yeti to record or stay with the AirPods. The key is to know the program is picking the audio input you want it to pick. In my setup, there are seven options listed. So, the chance for the computer to pick the wrong one exists.

checking audio input before podcast recording

How to improve AirPods mic quality

The biggest trick here for me has been to declare which AirPod picks up the audio and is used as the mic. That has created issues in the past.

Also, ensure the AirPods are fully charged. Running out of juice in the middle of a show will create headaches.

The hair over AirPod doesn’t seem to be as much of an issue as it was with the Earbuds.

Don’t mess with them! I do see people that fiddle with them. Oh no, are they coming out of my ears? If they don’t during your everyday use, they also will stay in place during a podcast recording. Try to keep your hands off your ears and no fiddling with them. At best, the audio will sound bad for a moment. Or, at worst, you tab them just the right amount of times to get them to do something – like start your music playlist.

Of course, speaking clearly and projecting naturally sounds great on the show.

AirPods to record a podcast can work. No doubt. Just ensure they are being picked up correctly, fully charged, and optimized for mic setup.

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