He’s got Audacity!

audacity

No, I’m not talking about the character trait a person having ‘audacity’ as in making bold moves, I’m talking about the Audacity software program, the FREE, open-source, easy-to-use, multi-track audio editor and recorder for Windows, Mac OS X, Linux and a few other operating systems. The interface can even be translated into different languages.

You can use Audacity to:

  • Record live microphone audio from the audio input on your computer.  Just connect up the appropriate mic, hit the record button and start talking
  • Convert old tapes or records into digital recordings or CDs
  • Edit common sound file types like MP3, WAV
  • Cut, copy, splice or mix sounds together.  Take two or three different sections of recorded MP3 audio, input them into Audacity, then edit and combine all three source files into one continuous MP3 file, and finally save and export into a single MP3 file

It’s just that easy!

So, now….Do you have the audacity to download the Audacity program?

If so, click on the Audacity logo( or link) to download and see the complete list of features.

http://audacity.sourceforge.net/download/

Sound Judgement?

Clay MikeHmmm….. Which microphone should I use?

As simple as it may ‘sound’ in this case, no pun intended, you MUST ask yourself, “Which type of microphone should I use?”, based upon the delivery parameters of your presentation.

Recently, I saw a short presentation by a ‘seasoned’ presenter/trainer. He was using a hand-held microphone.  He delivered a great, 10-minute presentation on the fundamentals of presenting and delivering a dynamic presentation. However, while explaining how body movement and hand gestures play a key role in speech delivery, he was all over the place with the hand-held microphone.  One minute in this hand, the other minute in that hand, then, at one time, he held it down at his waist.  It was hard to hear him.  Quite to my surprise, he even walked over to the projection table and set down the microphone so he could perform and talk about a wide-open arm gesture to the audience.  We lost his audio!!!!

Did I mention the session was being recorded?

Guess what happened when he set down the microphone? Yep…you guessed it! That audio portion was lost on the recording.  Ooops!  Won’t make that mistake again.

Clearly, he should have considered using a lapel or head worn  microphone in this case.

Nugget Takeaway: Remember to consider your delivery style AND your audience when choosing your microphone type.

Keep on Speaking!!

Hit that Record Button. Now!

record_buttonIn the future, every time you speak, challenge yourself to make sure you record your presentation with some type of recording device. In this modern time of ‘digital’ technology, data storage is now really cheap, takes up very little space compared to what it used to, and is easy to come by. If you can’t set up the recording device and make the recording by yourself, ask a colleague to assist.

Whether you’re using your own smartphone app (Android, iPhone, etc.) for making a basic recording file, or you’re using an actual standalone recording device that can usually make a more “robust” recording, some devices let you record in two different AV modes: either in an audio-only format or in a full HD 1080p video quality format containing both audio AND video. You make the choice. Remember, different quality formats require different amounts of storage space. To ensure you don’t run out of disc space, grab a calculator and do the math on your expected recording outcome file size based on the configurations of your recording device. Check your device user manual for recording card capabilities.

At about the size of a stamp, most data cards, for example, like the popular SD type seen here, are relatively SD_cardsinexpensive and can hold a handful of hours of high-definition (HD) 1080p quality video and even many more hours of audio if you wish to record in an audio-only format. Here is a reference link to a wiki page covering all of the difference types of SD cards. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Secure_Digital. The three basic SD card form factors are the original size, the “mini” size, and the “micro” size and they all come in storage capacity ranges from 1-64GB, and higher, depending upon the card type. Remember, check your manual.

Finally, remember to record whenever you can. You will enjoy reviewing your past speeches to help you get better each time you speak in the future. If you don’t record, you can’t measure your progression. Recording your speeches is a great way to document and learn more about what you did right or wrong and what you can work on in futures speeches. One reminder, though, as you review your recordings, be easy on yourself – don’t be too critical. This is a learning progression. As you become more familiar with hearing your own voice and looking at yourself on stage, you will begin to get more comfortable with watching…well – You!

Just sit back, watch and listen.