So we’ve been running our podcast for over a year now – a few months shy of two, actually. And while this gives us no bragging rights (yet) in the podcasting space, a lot of people planning to start their own podcasts have reached out to us from time to time about what they might need to get started.
This article will break down six key tools that you need to start podcasting and where to purchase them – physically within Kampala or online from overseas. There’s also a free cheat-sheet at the end – don’t miss it! Let’s get cracking:
Using the right microphones ensures quality audio for your podcast. Microphones amplify your voice against background noise, and if chosen well, actually have noise cancellation functionality to keep out that ambient noise altogether.
Great podcast microphones include the MV7 or MV7X by Shure, and the PodMic or PodMic USB by RØDE. Naturally, there are good budget-friendly alternatives on the market by brands like JMary, but these are our best recommendations. Depending on your audio interface, these work with computers, USB-C smartphones (the MV7 and PodMic USB) and sound recorders.
A safe bet is to buy your microphones on Amazon and have them shipped or brought in by traveling friends. However, you can also purchase them from musical/electronics stores within Kampala at a slightly pricier rate, considering factors like shipping, taxation and retail value. also might be able to give them to you at friendly rates. A good place to try would be GoFox Express on Instagram for the RodMics or Silman’s Point on Jiji Uganda for the Shure mics. Both stores do delivery within Kampala, at a charge.
Audio Recording Interface
An audio interface comprises of a sound recorder, a storage device (memory card) onto which your sound will be recorded and stored, and a reliable power source, batteries or power bank to ensure that your sound recorder does not run out of juice and power off in the middle of a podcast recording.
Great sound recorders include the RØDECaster Pro or Pro II by RØDE if your podcast will have a studio/static set-up, or the Zoom H4n Pro or Zoom H6 sound recorders by Zoom for cases where your podcast will be mobile in nature. Zoom also makes some great sound recorders specifically dedicated to podcasting – like the PodTrak P4 for mobile podcasts and the PodTrak P8 for studio podcasts.
While the Zoom H4n Pro and H6 sound recorders are easily purchasable in musical/electronics stores in Kampala (again, GoFox Express and a few other stores on Jiji are a good place to start), great podcast interfaces are generally hard to find on the Ugandan market. Budget-friendly alternatives are available though, at the expense of quality. We recommend shipping in one.
TIP: If your podcast is designed as a monologue (one voice only), your phone or computer will serve just fine as an audio recording interface – just find the right microphone, like the JMary MC-PW10 or the Blue Yeti USB mic (as alternatives to Shure and RØDE).
Cables basically transmit your audio input from the microphones into your audio recording interface. They can be USB-C, TRS/TRRS or XLR cables. Your choice of cable is entirely predetermined by your microphones’ output jacks, and your audio interface’s input jacks.
When purchasing these, look out for the right length to serve your purpose and thick insulation for durability. A good length of audio cables would be 2-5meters depending on how far apart your podcast’s sitting arrangement is arranged. Cables can be bought in all musical/electronics stores downtown in Kampala, like the Yamaha Center.
Microphone stands and booms depend on the set-up of your podcast. They could be regular microphone stands, in case your set-up involves sitting on long stools, in a couch or standing. If your set-up has a center-table/coffee table, tabletop mic stands will look more appealing and be convenient. However, if the podcast is set up in a studio space, then it’s best to get mic booms/arms firmly screwed to the edge of the table.
Some low-budget microphones also come with their own stands or arms as a value-add, and some are designed with bases that enable them to settle on flat surfaces on their own.
When choosing your microphone stands, look out for the right lengths, keeping your podcast’s set-up in mind. Check for their sturdiness especially at the base, to ensure that they can stand firm.
Microphone stands are very commonly sold in musical/electronics stores downtown in Kampala, as well as on Jiji Uganda.
You will need great headphones to help you monitor the quality and volumes of your audio input both while recording on-set and during post production of your podcast. When purchasing these, look out for headphones that have active noise cancellation to shut out ambient noise wherever you’re recording or editing from.
Great headphones include the WH1000-XM4 or XM5 by Sony & the Bose NC 700. Again, there are more budget-friendly alternatives on the market by JBL and other brands that should do the job just fine. But if you’re as picky as we are on sound definition, you want to look into saving up for our recommendations.
Headphones are available in every gadget store in Kampala. We recommend shopping the most authentic headphones at fair prices from Gadget Craze on their website or Silman’s Point on Jiji Uganda.
After recording your podcast, you will need software or applications with which you can post-edit your raw content into the final product. You will need applications which distribute the final product on podcast hosting platforms, and also market your content through social media and email marketing.
A computer or mobile device with great processor speeds and enough storage space for the raw files, the final edits – and the applications/software themselves – is a must-have.
Here, it’s less about brands and more about getting the right specifications. But our recommendations would be a MacBook Pro with at least 16GB RAM (especially if you plan to turn your podcast audio-visual at some point) for computers, and iPhone 12 and above or Samsung S Series above the S21 with at least 4GB RAM (again, if you’re planning to go audio-visual). Please don’t hesitate to work with less pricier alternatives you might have at hand or have the capacity to buy; these are merely best recommendations. Visit Gadget Craze or Silman’s Point to purchase your computer/mobile device.
Now that you’re working on getting the gear for your podcast (yaaay), our next cheat-sheet will break down what software and applications could make your work a lot less tedious – and a lot more fun – at every stage of producing your podcast! Keep your eyes peeled.
In case you’d like technical support on your podcast – or all things content creation, visit calendly.com/afrimillennial/business to schedule a call with us. Cheers, and have fun!
Found this helpful? Click the image below to download your free cheat-sheet – for keeps!