Category Archives: Podcast

RØDE Debuts Free Ambisonic Sound Library

The SoundField by RØDE NT-SF1 ambisonic microphone in use.
The SoundField by RØDE NT-SF1 ambisonic microphone was used to record audio for the project.

Sydney, Australia (May 7, 2020)—Røde Microphones has unveiled its new Ambisonic Sound Library, a collection of 360° surround sound ambisonic recordings, free to download for license-free use in projects.

It’s not the company’s first venture into ambisonics, having released its SoundField by Røde NT-SF1 ambisonic microphone in 2018 and the accompanying SoundField by Røde Plug-in, which allows users to manipulate the mic’s recordings in post-production, changing the mic directivity, position and rotation, allowing users to create everything from a 7.1.4 surround mix to a fully head-tracked 360° soundscape for immersive video.

RødeCaster Pro Beta Update Released

The library, then, highlights recordings made with the mic and plug-in over the last 18 months by numerous engineers, including composer/field recordist Watson Wu and musician/sound designer Richard Devine. The Library contains hundreds of royalty-free ambisonic recordings, ranging from atmospheric soundscapes to specific sound effects, all available for use in films, podcasts and more.

Users can preview and download the ambisonic files and load them into the free SoundField by Røde Plug-in in any DAW.

Røde Ambisonic Sound Library •

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Podcast ‘The Big Swing’ Connects with MXL Mics

Houston, TX (May 7, 2020)—MLB may be MIA due to the coronavirus pandemic, but that hasn’t stopped Ross Stripling and Cooper Surles as they produce The Big Swing podcast. For Stripling, it’s one of many balls he keeps in the air—he’s also a financial advisor and, more importantly, a right-handed pitcher for the Los Angeles Dodgers. As a result, when he and Surles get on the mic, they chat about everything from baseball to Netflix to finance to you name it. The show kicked off in January, 2019, and after some initial audio issues, the pair settled in on MXL BCD-1 broadcast mics to help clean up their sound.

“In our first few months of podcasting, audio was the biggest challenge for us,” said Stripling. “Once we were able to deploy the MXL mics and put them in front of each speaker, our audio went up twofold [compared] to the previous solution we were using.”

How Pros Are Livestreaming During the Pandemic

Some of that is due to noise-rejection features on the mic, said Surles, noting, “Not only do the mics pick up audio well, but they also do an awesome job of rejecting outside noise. This is a particularly helpful feature when we record in our home studio set up, where my dog might be barking in the other room. Also, we frequently have guests that have no previous microphone experience, so they often won’t speak directly into the mic, and the BCD-1 does a solid job of capturing their voices off-axis.”

An end address dynamic microphone, the BCD-1 sports a tuned grill intended to help eliminate internal reflections and a built-in shock mount that prevents unwanted noise. The mic is designed for capturing audio in a variety of settings, which comes in handy for Stripling. While many podcasts are recorded in the same spot show after show, his day job understandably finds him on the road a lot, so the pitcher often has to record in new spaces instead of the same studio show after show. “When we travel, I keep the mics in my carry on, which gets thrown around a great deal, and while my luggage takes a real beating, the MXL mics remain in perfect working condition no matter what,” he said. “They’re definitely durable and they’ve been exactly what we need.”


The Big Swing •

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Rethinking Podcast Sound Design with APM’s Byers

Rob Byers on location in Aspen, CO.
Rob Byers on location in Aspen, CO. Suzanne Schaffer

St. Paul, MN (May 7, 2020)—As podcasting continues to grow at a blistering pace, its production needs are likewise maturing. For audio pros like Rob Byers, American Public Media’s director of broadcast and media operations, the medium represents not only a technical challenge, but a creative one as well, providing a venue where podcast sound design and audio technologies like ambisonic and binaural sound can be used as exciting tools for storytelling.

After graduating the Peabody Conservatory at Johns Hopkins University with a Master’s in recording arts, Byers began working at NPR, eventually joining the NPR Training team, training reporters about audio production. Now at American Public Media and Minnesota Public Radio, his team provides the production platform for podcasts like Marketplace, Make Me Smart and In the Dark. He also works separately as an audio mixer on podcasts like the long-running hit Criminal and Fiasco.

Byers, whose work has contributed to a Peabody and Pulitzer, talked with Podcast Pro about how his efforts in both radio and podcasting inform each other, and the importance of sound design in the future of podcasting.

You work with both broadcast radio and podcasts disciplines. How are they alike and different in your experience?

Broadcasting has brought me a real appreciation for systems [and] workflows. In broadcasting, you’re always keeping an eye on the clock. You only have X amount of time to tell your story. All of those things provide this nice framework for telling the story that doesn’t exist in podcasting. I think that leads to a real efficient way of working, and the boundaries that sets can be really helpful for creativity.

What’s really unique about podcasting is that the audience is there to listen to your story, and that’s it. They are making a conscious choice to listen to that thing at that time, whereas the radio you can put on in the background. Knowing your audience is there, they are a captive audience, they might even be listening on headphones—that opens up some really interesting possibilities in terms of podcast sound design, mix and the way you tell your story.

Live on KEXP Podcast Blurs the Lines Between Live and Studio Recording

What does that mean for the audio production side?

You know what the end user is getting. I think this is one of the untapped opportunities of podcasting. I know the file that I export from my production system is pretty much the same file that you’re going to listen to. I know you’re going to hear the panning, and the way that I use the panning. I know you’re going to hear the levels, and the way that I use the levels. If I want to start experimenting with other technologies, like ambisonic or binaural, I know it’s going to make its way to the end user. I’m super excited to see where podcasting goes from here. I have a feeling we’re only scratching the surface.

Rob Byers, American Public Media’s director of broadcast and media operations.
Rob Byers, American Public Media’s director of broadcast and media operations. Bria Granville

Do you see the opportunity as akin to something like the adventurous growth seen in the early days of multi-track recording?

I think I do see it like that. The barrier to entry is really low, and that allows for a lot of experimentation. [But] in order for podcasting to fully realize its potential, especially on the sound design front, the budgets have to be there. There are many great examples of low-budget, well-sound-designed content, but those productions, in my mind, don’t tend to last. Maybe they’re not bringing in the money, maybe it’s too much work, [or] it was a passion project. But I’m hoping those who are making audio content are going to be more willing to budget money into sound design.

You’re been very vocal about loudness in radio. How does that relate to podcasters?

Loudness, loudness tools and loudness meters are so helpful for one reason: consistency. Consistency of level, consistency from episode to episode, consistency between one voice and another voice in the podcast.

There are different opinions right now about what levels should your podcast episode target. The AES, a couple years ago, made some recommendations, and they’re pretty spot on. It’s a range, but they tend to gravitate toward -18 LUFS for podcast episodes. [Byers was an author on the report. —Ed.] One of the nice things loudness allows you to do [is] mix at a lower level, so you can use the -24 LUFS broadcast target to do your mix of your podcast. That provides quite a bit of headroom for the spoken word, and it’s much easier to mix without having to know about compressors.  Then, when your show is mixed and it sounds good to your ear, use a loudness normalization tool to bump it up to -18.


You’ve trained audio journalists whose technical experience varies. What are the most common questions they ask?

I think the single-most-asked question is some variation of, “What gear should I get?” I really wish the question were more focused towards, “What should I record? What should I be pointing my microphone at?” Something that will help tell the story, that will put the listener in the space, that they need to be in to hear the story.

You put more emphasis on the sound needed to tell the story rather than the tools you use to get there?

100%. If all you’ve got on you is your smartphone, you’re going to have technical challenges, no doubt. But you can still come back with a recording that will help you tell a story, that will help you put a listener in someone’s living room or someone’s kitchen or the side of the street. And depending on the kind of storytelling you’re doing, that may be the most important thing. I could give you a $3,000 Schoeps CMIT 5U. That’s a beautiful mic and I’ve recorded opera with that. It’s glorious. But it doesn’t mean you’re going to tell a great story if I put it in your hands, right?

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Live on KEXP Podcast Blurs the Lines Between Live and Studio Recording

The Live Room at Live sessions at Seattle's KEXP are captured for broadcast, podcasts, streaming and other formats.
Live sessions at Seattle’s KEXP are captured for broadcast, podcasts, streaming and other formats. Renata Steiner/Nataworry Photography

Kevin Suggs arrived in Seattle just in time for the ‘90s grunge-era gold rush, when the city was bursting with bands looking to score a record deal. Spending a decade of 12-hour-plus days pushing faders at studios like Avast! Recording Company was the perfect training to head up audio engineering for the podcast series Live on KEXP.

“Things just started to explode,” Suggs says. “Even though I wasn’t working with any huge Seattle bands, there were just so many bands and everybody was recording. It was a very vibrant time to be making music in this town. Everybody had a shot.”

As a freelance engineer and steel guitarist, Suggs racked up credits on albums by Death Cab For Cutie, The Shins and Brandi Carlile. By the time he arrived at KEXP, a non-profit arts organization known for curating adventurous music for its FM radio station and online properties, the audio crew was producing more than 100 live music sessions a year.

The control room at KEXP Studios in Seattle
The control room at KEXP Studios in Seattle Renata Steiner/Nataworry Photography

Live on KEXP—until this week, known as KEXP’s Live Performances—is the latest evolution of a podcasting program that began in 2004, and a key arm of the organization’s multi-platform approach that includes broadcasting to the Seattle radio market and streaming to two million YouTube subscribers.

Every note of sound, though, begins with Suggs and the audio engineering team. Today, KEXP logs about 300 performances every year. To maintain efficiency and consistency, Suggs begins each session with a proven template based around workhorse mics like Shure SM57s and SM58s and a baseline of plug-ins and presets in Pro Tools.

“My mantra for these things is just simplicity,” says Suggs. “I’m not trying to recreate a band’s record or anything. I’m trying to capture what the band is giving.”

The Live Room at KEXP Studios in Seattle
The Live Room at KEXP Studios in Seattle Renata Steiner/Nataworry Photography

Until a few years ago, the engineers mixed the audio to two-track on an eight-bus digital Mackie board before sending it to Pro Tools. These days, they automate the mix through an Avid S6 Pro Tools control surface.

“It’s recording every move I make,” he says. “If I didn’t quite get that guitar solo up in time, I can make a marker. And then once we’re off the air, I can go back and I can fix that [for the podcast].”

Major Podcasters Keep Content Coming Despite Pandemic

Like any live recording situation, though, control is a relative concept. There’s only so much isolation you can do when a full band is playing together in room. Suggs has a few tricks to help keep instruments in their own lanes, but sometimes he simply has to let it bleed.

“I always start my mixes with the vocal mics up because they’re going to color everything,” he notes. “It doesn’t make a lot of sense to solo the kick drum, because as soon you push those vocal mics up, it’s going to change that kick drum sound completely. It’s just a matter of embracing the bleed, because you’re going to get a lot of it.”

Instead of setting up bands according to their stage plots, Suggs positions them in a circle, with everyone facing each other like in a rehearsal. In the absence of isolation barriers, this configuration cancels some of the interference between the vocal mic and drum mics.

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Every session that ends up on the Live on KEXP podcast is first broadcast via radio to the Seattle area. With few exceptions, what ends up on YouTube and the podcast is exactly the same as what the radio listeners heard. The main difference between the broadcast and streaming audio is in the mastering stage.

Troy Nelson, KEXP DJ and host of the Live on KEXP podcast.
Troy Nelson, KEXP DJ and host of the Live on KEXP podcast. Renata Steiner/Nataworry Photography

“We hit the one that goes out on the air with a little more compression [from an L2 leveling amplifier], and then we do a raw track [for streaming] that has nothing on it and no compression. That’s what we usually use for mastering, so we can start fresh without any other compression.”

When shelter-in-place orders came into play in March, the Live on KEXP team was already set up to have their engineers work remotely. Most, like Suggs, have studios in their homes, so they’re able to mix and master sessions seamlessly.

Luckily, KEXP has enough sessions in the can to last well into the summer months. The only audio currently being recorded at home for the Live on KEXP podcast is the voiceover by host Troy Nelson, who runs an AKG Perception 20 mic through a Universal Audio Arrow audio interface into Logic Pro X.

Rest assured, Suggs and the audio engineering team will be ready to go as soon as they’re able to get back to the studio.

“I really feed off of the vibe,” he says. “There’s really something about that live energy and the mix being a performance. At the same time as the band’s performing, you’re performing the mixing. You still get that adrenaline rush. There’s no net.”

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JLab Audio Debuts Talk Series USB Mics for Podcasting

JLab's new Talk line of microphones includes three models(l-r) — the Talk Go, Talk and Talk Pro.
JLab’s new Talk line of microphones includes three models(l-r) — the Talk Go, Talk Pro and Talk.

San Diego, CA (April 29, 2020) — While best-known for its consumer earbuds and headphones, JLab Audio is expanding into the USB microphone market with the introduction of its Talk line of mics aimed at podcasters, streamers, home recordists and others. The line debuts with three models—the JLab Talk Go, Talk and Talk Pro.

All JLab Audio Talk microphones feature plug & play compatibility, 3.5 mm headphone jack for zero-latency, quick-mute button, 5/8″ mounting metal foldable stands and on-mic controls. In addition, each model comes with a USB / USB-C braided cable. The mics have a 20 Hz – 20 kHz frequency response and a 120 dB max SPL.

The Talk Go condenser mic is intended to be more portable, and is earmarked for calling, streaming and podcasting. It offers 96 k/24-bit recording and sports two 14 mm condensers, offering both cardioid and omni patterns.

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The Talk builds on that, including three condensers and four directional options—cardioid, omni, stereo and bi-directional—and the Talk Pro takes those specs and adds in a recording sample rate of 192 k.

“While we’re not abandoning our roots in audio, the Talk series shows that JLab’s ability to innovate can go well beyond what you hear, to what you say, and potentially, even further,” said JLab CEO Win Cramer.

The JLab Talk GO ($49), Talk ($99) and Talk Pro ($149 ) are all scheduled to ship in early May, 2020.

JLab Audio •

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RødeCaster Pro Beta Update Released

Australia (March 31, 2020)—Røde has released a public RødeCaster Pro beta update for the firmware of its podcast production studio.

The update includes a variety of features, including the ability to control all the individual processing parameters, enhanced metering, a new reverb effect, sound pad overdubbing and MP3 export. It also features an enhanced companion app.

Røde to Aid Schools Affected by Coronavirus

Rode’s new Companion App has a built-in firmware updater, so users who connect the RødeCaster Pro to a computer and run the Companion App will get a software prompt, offering to update to beta version 2.1.

As the update is currently unsupported, Rode warns against using it for critical projects and does not guarantee that it is stable or free of software bugs, nor does it have tutorials or online help for it yet. Users who install the version 2.1 beta and want to go back to version 2.0.4 can do so using the 2.0.4 firmware updater by holding down ‘alt’ (Windows) or ‘Option’ (Mac) while clicking through the updater.

RØDECaster Pro Beta Version (windows)

RØDECaster Pro Beta Version (mac os)

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Producing Rolling Stone’s Podcast During COVID-19

Brian Hiatt (right), host of the Rolling Stone Music Now podcast, often talks with guests, such as Questlove on the show.
Brian Hiatt (right), host of the Rolling Stone Music Now podcast, often talks with guests like Questlove on the show.

New York, NY (March 27, 2020)—The familiar becomes ever-more important during times of crisis, and for many people weathering the current COVID-19 global pandemic, that means taking deep dives into streaming TV shows, movies, music and podcasts. For a weekly podcast like Rolling Stone Music Now, that means the show must go on, with its production team creating new episodes to answer demand, despite the added hurdles of lockdowns and shelter-in-place orders.

On the March 23 edition of the podcast, four of the magazine’s staffers—two in New York and two in Los Angeles—discussed the industry’s current troubles in the first remote-recorded edition of Rolling Stone Music Now, “Cancellations, Chaos: How the Pandemic Halted the Music Biz.”

Instead of tracking the podcast in Sirius XM’s New York studios, as they’ve done on previous episodes, each journalist sequestered in their apartments and communicated through the Zoom web conferencing platform. With all four of them on the call, an engineer recorded them from a fifth location and began the editing process before the episode hit Sirius XM.

The results kept the wheels on the train for the first episode, but the show’s host, Rolling Stone senior writer Brian Hiatt, is already planning ways to improve the audio quality to something more akin to the podcast’s typical production values.

“I’m going to attempt to separately record my audio using a high-quality [Apogee MiC Plus] microphone I have at the same time I’m speaking in Zoom, and allow my engineer to use my more studio-sounding microphone along with everyone else’s phone call,” he explains. “For the first episode, that didn’t work out, but I think I figured it out now.”

Once an engineer takes a first pass at the edit, Hiatt, a guitar player and home-recording hobbyist, makes the episode’s final cuts. “We haven’t actually [tried using the second mic] yet, but I’m fairly confident it’ll work,” he says. “The problem is I can’t monitor it, so that’s annoying for various reasons—in part because there’s a local delay so I can’t listen and monitor at the same time. I just have to hope for the best that it’s coming out okay.”

Rolling Stone Music NowSince the first episode premiered in January, 2016, the Rolling Stone Music Now podcast has consistently dropped content that mirrors the boundary-blending range of music, politics and pop culture long established as hallmarks of the print magazine.

The March 23 episode explored the effects of the pandemic on the music world. According to Forbes, overall internet use is up 70 percent in countries under lockdown, particularly in Europe, driven in part by a 12 percent-spike in streaming entertainment. As mandated shelter-in-place orders are implemented in more places in the U.S., experts expect those numbers to follow suit. Unfortunately, the live entertainment industry is suffering in opposite proportion to those online gains.

“It took a while for [COVID-19] to hit the concert industry, and when it did, it was like a chain of dominoes,” said Hiatt during the episode. Longer-lead festivals were first. SXSW and Ultra both cancelled on March 6, followed by Coachella on March 10. Pearl Jam threw up a white flag on its major North American tour March 9, followed by the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival on March 17. After that, the entire concert industry effectively shut down in short order—providing plenty for Hiatt and Rolling Stone senior music business editor Amy X. Wang and staff writers Samantha Hissong and Ethan Millman to recount and discuss.

In the past, Rolling Stone Music Now has also covered historical topics such as the making of Van Morrison’s Astral Weeks, hot takes on current artists like Taylor Swift and Lil Nas X, as well as self-deprecating episodes like “Classic Albums We’ve Trashed,” in which a team of staffers revisits underwhelming reviews and atone for their predecessors’ questionable judgment calls.

Moving forward during the current COVID-19 crisis, though, Hiatt says they’re considering new themes and ways to bring fresh content to their audience under these less-than-ideal circumstances.

“I think going forward we’re going to have to reconsider exactly what we’re doing,” he says. “I like maybe the idea of pulling back and doing some deep dives on some artists’ catalogs, some kind of timeless stuff. And people can be really into that idea. It might be the right time for that kind of thing, so I’m sure it will affect how we do things.”

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TASCAM Debuts Model 12 Mixer Carrying Bag

New York, NY (March 25, 2020)—A new specialized carrying bag for the TASCAM Model 12 Integrated Production Suite multitrack recording mixer. Designed for desktop-style audio and multimedia production, small-format live performances, podcasting, live streaming and more, the Model 12 can now get from here to there safely in its own specialized carrier.

Tascam Updates USB Audio Interface Driver

Dubbed the CS-Model 12, the custom-fit carrying bag that helps protect the Model 12 in on-the-go production environments. Made of heavy-duty fabric and weighing less than two pounds itself, the CS-Model 12 carrying bag features an extra layer of padding sewn into the internal lining to protect knobs and switches from damage. The bag’s dimensions are custom-measured to match the Model 12’s small-format footprint and profile, providing a snug fit during transport

The bag can be zipped up from both sides once the Model 12 is inside. An external side pocket with two metal zippers provides room for storing mics, cables, SD cards or other peripherals. A shoulder strap with metal clasps sewn to the bag supports hands-free transport of the unit. Additionally, two securely sewn-on fabric handles provide a hand-held carrying option.

While designed to specifically fit the TASCAM Model 12, the CS-Model 12’s size and features – pocket, padding, strap, handles, and rugged fabric – mean it can be used to carry other types of gear, including small format mixers, microphones, cables, TASCAM Portastudios and field recorders, and more.


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Coronavirus and Pro Audio: Developing News

BOOKMARK THIS PAGE! As the novel coronavirus pandemic continues, this page will be updated regularly with related pro-audio news.

New York, NY (March, 2020) – Evolving quickly from a localized virus in China to a worldwide pandemic, the novel coronavirus has upended every industry around the globe, including pro audio.

MARCH 20 – Joe McGrath, a freelance live sound pro in Washington, D.C., unknowingly contracted COVID-19 in late February. After testing positive on March 10, his life turned upside down, but now on the road to recovery after a near-death experience, he shares his story. Others, such as producer Rob Graves, suggest the coronavirus may be an opportunity to change the world for the better.

MARCH 19 – Alive Risk, Clair Global, the Event Safety Alliance, Griffin360, Merch Roadie, Show Makers Symposium and Take1 Insurance have joined together to create the Roadie Rescue Campaign, a GoFundMe campaign that aims to raise $250,000 in donations to provide relief to freelance production pros affected by event cancellations.

MARCH 18 – While widely signed petitions and relief effort announcements are circulating daily, at press time, no clear, sustained approach has emerged yet to concretely address the welfare of the touring industry’s workforce. Stepping up to fill some of that enormous gap is the Recording Academy which, with its MusiCares foundation is establishing the COVID-19 Relief Fund to help U.S. musicians and touring pros whose livelihood has been affected by the coronavirus pandemic.

The pandemic has affected live sound professionals around the globe, of course, and opera star Andrea Bocelli’s longtime FOH engineer, Andrea Bocelli, discussed the situation with Pro Sound News from Firenze, Italy, where the entire country remains under lockdown.

MARCH 17 – As the U.S. live sound industry increasingly hunkers down for a long wait, some are already discussing how emerging guidelines may change the live production industry when the pandemic has subsided. In the meantime, there are different ways live sound pros can approach using their unexpected downtime.

Aiming to protect employees while also helping mitigate the coronavirus’ spread, French loudspeaker manufacturer L-Acoustics has closed nearly all its facilities worldwide.

MARCH 16 – With more European countries going under lockdown over the weekend, and additional U.S. localities enacting measures to help prevent the spread of coronavirus, many live sound pros are unsure as to the next steps to take. In response, some manufacturers like Powersoft are offering online product training classes in an effort to spread the word about their offerings while also providing useful career education opportunities.

Many pro-audio brands use China for a considerable amount of their manufacturing; with that country easing out of the pandemic while others are entering it, the capabilities of some companies to ensure timely delivery of orders is often up in the air. Martin Audio has issued comprehensive statements as to the current state of its existing and planned inventories worldwide.

MARCH 13 – With a national emergency declared in the United States on Friday, March 13, cities and municipalities around the country have enacted prohibitions against large gatherings that could potentially bolster the coronavirus’ spread—moves that have not only closed schools and libraries in many parts of the country, but also caused all major professional and college sports programs to cancel or delay their seasons, theaters and museums to close, and venues of all sizes to shutter or run only if they serve a greatly diminished capacity.

In response, music tours and events at all levels have gone on hiatus, which in turn has brought much of the live sound industry to a halt. What this means for the live sound industry remains to be seen, but with weeks, possibly months of downtime ahead, there are grave concerns about how live sound pros will get by.

With school districts closing worldwide, audio manufacturer Røde has offered to provide up to $2 million AU worth of podcasting equipment to high schools in New South Wales, Australia, affected by sequestering to prevent the spread of coronavirus.

MARCH 12 – Live Nation and AES, among other tour and venue operators, have suspended all tours under their auspices, essentially bringing the live sound industry to a halt. The move comes among a deluge of tour and festival cancellations and postponements in the face of both growing prohibitions on large-scale gatherings and industry concerns. Likewise, major conventions and events across many industries have announced similar fates, inadvertently slamming the event production industry.

Pro audio events aren’t excluded from that fate. Today, Prolight + Sound, one of the foremost AV and pro audio conventions in Europe, cancelled following an initial attempt to reschedule to late May that was met with lukewarm interest from some major exhibitors.

Simultaneously, the annual European edition of the AES Convention, to be held this year in Vienna, suspended registration. While the convention is currently still set to take place in late May, newly enacted restrictions on event sizes would scuttle the event unless they’re lifted by that date.

Back in the United States, Almo Pro has cancelled the Washington, D.C. edition of its E4 Experience conference, originally set for April 3. It cancelled the Santa Clara, CA, edition this past Monday.

MARCH 11The NAB Show has been cancelled with the announcement it will attempt to hold an event or events later in the year, or simply return in 2021.

MARCH 10 – Avid has joined the growing ranks of exhibitors pulling out of the NAB Show, set to take place in Las Vegas April 18–22. Additionally, the company cancelled its own Avid Connect 2020 conference, which was planned to run adjacent to the larger convocation.

MARCH 9 – Out of an abundance of caution, Almo Pro has pulled the plug on the Santa Clara, CA, edition of its E4 Experience conference.

MARCH 4 – Facing mounting impact by the coronavirus, Prolight + Sound, one of the foremost AV and pro audio conventions in Europe announced that PL+S 2020 has been rescheduled to late May.

FEBRUARY 19 – Despite growing concerns about coronavirus, the NAB has announced the NAB Show in Las Vegas is still set for April.

• • •

For audio pros who are now faced with time on their hands, preparing equipment for when the industry goes back to work is a sensible action to take, such as cleaning microphones to prevent further spread of coronavirus.

With the virus spreading, it is imperative to stay healthy! With that in mind, we look back at a key METAlliance column from last fall, where legendary Grammy-winning engineers Al Schmitt, Chuck Ainlay and Elliot Scheiner share how to stay healthy in the studio and still get the job done.

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Røde to Aid Schools Affected by Coronavirus

Røde will give up to $2 million worth of podcast kits to Australian schools affected by coronavirus.
Røde will give up to $2 million worth of podcast kits to Australian schools affected by coronavirus.

Sydney, Australia (March 13, 2020)—Australian pro audio manufacturer Røde Microphones plans to donate up to $2 million worth of podcast kits to help schools throughout New South Wales, Australia that have been impacted by COVID-19.

Working with the NSW Department of Education, Røde’s aim is to establish a program that will give schools access to audio equipment they can use to deliver classes remotely via podcast platforms.

Real-World Review: Røde RødeCaster Pro Podcast Studio

Any NSW public high schools that have the capability to benefit from the initiative can access an online portal on the Røde website to order a complete podcasting kit, which would allow them to record course material remotely in the event that their school is closed, and students are quarantined for an extended period of time.

The podcasting kit will include a RødeCaster Pro Podcast Production Studio, microphones and accessories.

“The potential impact of COVID-19 on education in Australia is enormous,” says Røde founder and chairman Peter Freedman AM. “We have already seen some schools shut down due to fears of an outbreak and we can expect to see many more closures over the coming months. The ramifications this will have on students’ learning is serious and I want to offer support to schools and to the Education Department in providing solutions.

“At the moment, Australia is scrambling to cope with the impact of COVID-19 across every aspect of day-to-day life,” he continued. “We know that schools in Australia are already feeling that impact. These closures could be devastating for students, particularly those in Year 12 taking their HSC exams later in the year, and we are offering a practical solution to help teachers minimize disruption to classes.”

Røde •

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