I record on computer through Audacity and output to a standalone PCM digital recorder. This provides two different forms of backup for the 'cast - Toby conceived this scheme and he did it right.
We do have different equipment to do this and usually it's not a problem. I have a PC and a Zoom H2 - the previous three podcasts were done using this equipment. On the last podcast, I was getting this annoying clicking on the computer version so I just used the digital recording version - worked great!
This time the roof fell in.
The recorder I was using just died - it was supposed to be on AC but it thought it was on batteries so it died instantly after I started the recording and I didn't realize it until I looked and the recorder was dark. So the first five minutes of the podcast were lost on the digital recorder.
Normally this would not be much of an issue but I could not get the PC and Audacity to go to stereo so my only source of stereo was the recorder - which was missing the first five minutes of the 'cast. I had the whole podcast on the computer in mono which is not great to edit because we split the mics left and right to be able to edit out issues easily.
Plus, and I am still puzzled by this, the only level that was good mic-wise was my mic. I had to boost both Jeff and Larry's mics tremendously after the fact in order to be heard. Boosting an audio signal is never good if you don't have anything reasonable to begin with. It just goes pear-shaped.
That's why it sounds, at times, as if they are being punched into the audio stream from a bathroom. I promise they were both present in the room - it just doesn't sound that way.
I edited the first five minutes of the podcast from the computer (in mono) and then joined it to the stereo portion of the digital recorder that had really low mic levels for Jeff and Larry. And actually, neither the H2 nor the PC had any sort of reasonable mic levels so it must have been something on the Mackie board that I did wrong.
Still checking that.
The result is so over-processed it sounds like I'm using a phase shifter on the podcast which isn't hard to imagine given that I equalized, compressed, limited, low-passed, high-passed, amplified, reduced, etc. etc. etc.
This is the Frankenstein of podcasts and just about as pretty.
To add to the woes, although we've recorded at this venue in the past, this time the nearby airport must have been landing and launching F-16s and C-17s because every ten minutes or so you can hear this low rumble through the mics.
I've purchased a new (used) H5 and I will solve the Audacity problem by maybe going to Adobe Audition for the recording and editing.