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Creative and geeky things, a podcast about creativity and technology from the Fredericksburg, Virginia area

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Podcast Episode's:
Moving Synchronized Tracks Together
<img src="https://assets.podomatic.net/ts/2c/3d/a7/marwalk/1400x1400_11763526.jpg" alt="itunes pic" /><br />It's fairly simple to move - that is, time shift - all of the Tracks in an Audacity project Together. In theory - you just enable the "Synchronize Tracks" feature - and time shift to suit. But it could be frustrating if you want to shift only a subset of Tracks - vis-à-vis the others in the project - which is a more likely use case anyway. In this Episode - we'll send that can't-move-the-right-Tracks-Together frustration to /dev/null.
Listen: podcast - audio/mpeg

Getting Technical Properties of an Audio File
<img src="https://assets.podomatic.net/ts/2c/3d/a7/marwalk/1400x1400_11763526.jpg" alt="itunes pic" /><br />How can you quickly confirm whether an audio file is stereo or mono - or its sample rate - its bit depth - its encoding type - and other information you may need to know about that file? In this Episode - we'll explore several terminal command line tools - that can deliver the information you need - as quickly as it takes to type the command and the audio filename.
Listen: podcast - audio/mpeg

Audacity Labels and Label Tracks
<img src="https://assets.podomatic.net/ts/2c/3d/a7/marwalk/1400x1400_11763526.jpg" alt="itunes pic" /><br />It's great to have a way to label parts and points in your audio. In Audacity - labels are contained in separate Tracks - that can still be associated with points in the audio. In this Episode - we'll explore why separate Tracks are helpful - and a few ways you can use labels - to make things a lot easier for you in your audio project.
Listen: podcast - audio/mpeg

Creating Transportable Filenames
<img src="https://assets.podomatic.net/ts/2c/3d/a7/marwalk/1400x1400_11763526.jpg" alt="itunes pic" /><br />Having an audio file not load or play because its filename won't load is annoying. If your file manager won't list it correctly - that could be disastrous. In this Episode - we'll go over how to create filenames that will work - no matter what programs you use them in - or where you send them.
Listen: podcast - audio/mpeg

Discerning When to Patch or just Record Again
<img src="https://assets.podomatic.net/ts/2c/3d/a7/marwalk/1400x1400_11763526.jpg" alt="itunes pic" /><br />In many cases - you can readily fix a glitch in a Recording - as we've discussed in some previous episodes. But sometimes it makes sense to cull it out - and just start over. In this Episode - we'll explore things to consider in deciding which to do.
Listen: podcast - audio/mpeg

Easing Audio Part Transition with Fade-In and Fade-Out
<img src="https://assets.podomatic.net/ts/2c/3d/a7/marwalk/1400x1400_11763526.jpg" alt="itunes pic" /><br />What do you do when you need to join together two snippets of audio - and one or both of them start or end with rough edges? In this Episode, we'll examine how the Fade-IN and Fade-OUT features of Audacity can help in this.
Listen: podcast - audio/mpeg

How to Decide Which Audio File Format to Use
<img src="https://assets.podomatic.net/ts/2c/3d/a7/marwalk/1400x1400_11763526.jpg" alt="itunes pic" /><br />Should you save your files in MP3, WAV, or something else? Well, the answer depends on several factors - and in this Episode, we'll examine the pros and cons of the most popular formats.
Listen: podcast - audio/mpeg

Archiving your Audio
<img src="https://assets.podomatic.net/ts/2c/3d/a7/marwalk/1400x1400_11763526.jpg" alt="itunes pic" /><br />When you're done with a project - you'll want to hold onto your work - at least temporarily until you're sure you won't need to return to it for any re-work. In this Episode - we'll examine some ways to archive your work - so that you can easily find it when you need to.
Listen: podcast - audio/mpeg

How Much Headtone is Needed
<img src="https://assets.podomatic.net/ts/2c/3d/a7/marwalk/1400x1400_11763526.jpg" alt="itunes pic" /><br />As used here - the terms "Headtone" and "Tailtone" - refer to bits of *silence* before and after an audio clip. How long do you make them? How much is Needed - and more importantly - why. In this Episode - we'll look into the pros and cons of longer and shorter bits of silence - at the beginning and end of each audio clip.
Listen: podcast - audio/mpeg

Whether to Delete or Silence Unwanted Audio
<img src="https://assets.podomatic.net/ts/2c/3d/a7/marwalk/1400x1400_11763526.jpg" alt="itunes pic" /><br />Whether To-Delete-or-Silence unwanted audio Well - It Depends. In this Episode - we'll look at the difference between deleting audio containing unwanted sound artifacts - and converting it into Silence. And when to do which.
Listen: podcast - audio/mpeg

Selecting Back to an Exact Point in the Audio
<img src="https://assets.podomatic.net/ts/2c/3d/a7/marwalk/1400x1400_11763526.jpg" alt="itunes pic" /><br />Imagine that there's a section of script that you re-did inside a single take. In this Episode - we'll go over an easy way to get to it - without having to listen to a lot of audio in-between.
Listen: podcast - audio/mpeg

Patching an Audio Part
<img src="https://assets.podomatic.net/ts/2c/3d/a7/marwalk/1400x1400_11763526.jpg" alt="itunes pic" /><br />Suppose you've just recorded a perfect take of a piece of copy. And then upon reviewing it - you discover that you've pronounced a word incorrectly - or used the wrong word altogether. No worries. - In this Episode - we'll go over how to patch it over - with a corrected audio part.
Listen: podcast - audio/mpeg

Managing Multiple Takes for the Best Audition
<img src="https://assets.podomatic.net/ts/2c/3d/a7/marwalk/1400x1400_11763526.jpg" alt="itunes pic" /><br />If you're *not* one of those people who nail it on the first try - you likely record and keep several takes before deciding on the best one to submit. In this Episode - we'll go over some ideas - on how to ensure that you're sending up your best work.
Listen: podcast - audio/mpeg

Two Keystroke Instant Playback in SoX
<img src="https://assets.podomatic.net/ts/2c/3d/a7/marwalk/1400x1400_11763526.jpg" alt="itunes pic" /><br />When you're ready to record your audition or project segment - you probably set up your digital audio workstation to record - and then play it back for quality assurance. There's a lot of mouse clicking involved - when you're recording in a GUI editor - and it takes several milliseconds to hunt and click the correct menu options. There's a command line way I like much better. In this epidsode - we'll look at how you can greatly accelerate this process - and with assured audio quality.
Listen: podcast - audio/mpeg

Creating Audition Filenames with Bash Variables
<img src="https://assets.podomatic.net/ts/2c/3d/a7/marwalk/1400x1400_11763526.jpg" alt="itunes pic" /><br />Using Bash scripts with Variables helps in automating your workflow - not only for efficiency but also - importantly - for consistency. In this Episode - we'll go over some practical steps - that could make your filenaming process go much smoother.
Listen: podcast - audio/mpeg

Scrubbing with Audacity
<img src="https://assets.podomatic.net/ts/2c/3d/a7/marwalk/1400x1400_11763526.jpg" alt="itunes pic" /><br />Most audio editors let you go to a point in your project - to start playing the audio from that point. But sometimes you want to listen a little more closely - to find that troublesome click - or other glitch you would like to edit or remove. One way to try to do that is by scrubbing. In this episode - we'll cover what audio scrubbing is - and how to do that in Audacity.
Listen: podcast - audio/mpeg

Combining Sound Files with Sox
<img src="https://assets.podomatic.net/ts/2c/3d/a7/marwalk/1400x1400_11763526.jpg" alt="itunes pic" /><br />Consider the use case of appending sound files together - such as adding a head tone and tail tone to a section of audio. Sure, you could do that in a GUI audio editor - but there's an easier and slicker way to do it. In this Episode - we'll go over how you can use SoX to combine audio files - freeing you up for the more fun parts of your projects.
Listen: podcast - audio/mpeg

Bash is your Friend
<img src="https://assets.podomatic.net/ts/2c/3d/a7/marwalk/1400x1400_11763526.jpg" alt="itunes pic" /><br />Bash is a command line shell that is common in popular Linux distributions. In this Episode, we'll go over how you can use Bash scripts to speed your workflow, and avoid errors in your audio projects.
Listen: podcast - audio/mpeg

Introducing FFmpeg
<img src="https://assets.podomatic.net/ts/2c/3d/a7/marwalk/1400x1400_11763526.jpg" alt="itunes pic" /><br />In this episode, we'll explore FFmpeg, and how to leverage it to produce your final product.
Listen: podcast - audio/mpeg

Leveraging Audacity Keyboard Shortcuts
<img src="https://assets.podomatic.net/ts/2c/3d/a7/marwalk/1400x1400_11763526.jpg" alt="itunes pic" /><br />You can do just about anything you need to in Audacity - by following the menu options or clicking the icons. But using Keyboard Shortcuts reduces hunt and click time - and greatly speeds your workflow. In this Episode, I'll share some Audacity Keyboard Shortcuts that could become your muscle-reflex go-to options.
Listen: podcast - audio/mpeg

Recognizing Waveforms of Breaths and Clicks
<img src="https://assets.podomatic.net/ts/2c/3d/a7/marwalk/1400x1400_11763526.jpg" alt="itunes pic" /><br />Imagine that you've just finished recording the perfect audio segment. Everything from cadence, emphasis, pronunciation, and enunciation all the way through to intangible feel - you just nailed it. Then when listening to the playback, you notice that in your enthusiasm - you had also over-done it with some deep breaths - and hit some hard consonants a little to emphatically. Sure you can edit them down, but first you have to *find* them. In this episode, I'll describe what these artifacts look like to me in an audio editor.
Listen: podcast - audio/mpeg

Record in SoX, Edit in Audacity
<img src="https://assets.podomatic.net/ts/2c/3d/a7/marwalk/1400x1400_11763526.jpg" alt="itunes pic" /><br />SoX is an excellent command line tool for recording and play back. But you still have to edit your recording in some type of GUI editor such as Audacity. So why not just record directly into Audacity in the first place? In this episode, I'll describe why I think that it's helpful to record your audio externally, and then import it into your audio editor.
Listen: podcast - audio/mpeg

Introducing Frescobaldi
<img src="https://assets.podomatic.net/ts/2c/3d/a7/marwalk/1400x1400_11763526.jpg" alt="itunes pic" /><br />The LilyPond utility is a text based music typesetting tool that generates professional quality music scores - and exports those scores as playable midi files. Frescobaldi is a GUI LilyPond Music Editor that manages this process for you in parallel open windows. What this has to do with voice over is that it's an excellent way to write your own jingles or music beds for your voice work products. The opening sounder for this podcast is something I wrote originally in LilyPond, then exported it to midi and eventually to a sound file that is then imported into Audacity. You'll likely find Frescobaldi a useful addition to your audio toolbox.
Listen: podcast - audio/mpeg

Changing Tempo with SoX
<img src="https://assets.podomatic.net/ts/2c/3d/a7/marwalk/1400x1400_11763526.jpg" alt="itunes pic" /><br />You will recall that Sox stands for "Sound eXchange," and it is "the Swiss Army knife of audio manipulation." Changing tempo means changing the length of a sound clip without speeding it or slowing it down. This is useful for when a specific word count must fit into set amount of time, such a radio spot or training slide. In this episode, we'll explore the command line options to get the results you and your clients need.
Listen: podcast - audio/mpeg

Let Us Be Normal
<img src="https://assets.podomatic.net/ts/2c/3d/a7/marwalk/1400x1400_11763525.jpg" alt="itunes pic" /><br />Someone new to audio production might wonder what in the world is normalization in audio, and why do engineers normalize their audio? In short, audio normalization brings the levels of sound files from different sources to be about the same. And that same person might be surprised to learn that this usually does not happen naturally. We'll look at what normalization does to audio, the different types of normalization, and which one to use.
Listen: podcast - audio/mpeg

Audacity Your Go To Editor
<img src="https://assets.podomatic.net/ts/2c/3d/a7/marwalk/1400x1400_11749653.jpg" alt="itunes pic" /><br />Many lists of audio editors start off with commercial software or specialized hardware. Several of those items are not only overly expensive, but it's a good idea to confirm that they will do all you need them to do before you buy. Near the bottom of these lists is Audacity. It is often presented as a last resort option for those who have no budget. Upon closer examination, however, you may find Audacity to be your *first choice* for other reasons besides just cost. We'll look into Audacity's ease of use, depth of features, and suitability for professional use cases.
Listen: podcast - audio/mpeg

Sox in Your Voice Over Toolbox
<img src="https://assets.podomatic.net/ts/2c/3d/a7/marwalk/1400x1400_11735856.jpg" alt="itunes pic" /><br />Sox stands for "Sound eXchange," and it is spelled S-o-X, with the letter "o" being lower case. SoX is presented as the "the Swiss Army knife of audio manipulation," and indeed it is. SoX is a command line tool, no GUI. But don't let that deter you. We'll go over some of its capabilities that will make you glad you have it in *your* audio Toolbox.
Listen: podcast - audio/mpeg

Linux is a Serious Voice Over System
<img src="https://assets.podomatic.net/ts/2c/3d/a7/marwalk/1400x1400_11721791.jpg" alt="itunes pic" /><br />How do you know you're using actual open source software for your audio work? If you're on Linux now, it's very likely you already know this, because of the software repositories feeding your package manager. But it's important to know that open source is very different from free closed source or try-it-free closed source software. So, exactly what open source tools are worthy of your attention, and more importantly, your use. Here are some audio production tools available in most major Linux distribution repositories. Future episodes will include helpful how-to tips on using some of these tools -- especially the ones I like to use in my workflow.
Listen: podcast - audio/mpeg

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