Blog

How to Make a Zoom Podcast (And Other Alternatives to Consider)

Content

How to Make a Zoom Podcast (And Other Alternatives to Consider)

Recording long-distance podcasts with a remote guest can be trickier than an in-studio setup. It’s important to find software that works for you and delivers the quality you need without too much fuss.

Many podcasters turn to Zoom because it’s something they’re already familiar with (especially after COVID-19 made it an essential part of work-from-home life). Zoom podcasting is an easy and natural first step into the remote podcasting world — but we’d argue that it shouldn’t be your final option. 

In this article, we’ll show you:

How to Record a Podcast on Zoom  

It’s easy to see how Zoom could become a popular choice among podcasters merely because they’re familiar with it. The odds are good that you’ve used the software for a work meeting or a virtual get-together with friends at least once during the pandemic. 

Zoom has also been popular due to its above-average audio quality and internet consistency compared to Skype and other online conference software. It’s comparatively easy to use — and it also has a ‘Basic’ tier that is attractive to cash-strapped beginners.

To start podcasting on Zoom, simply follow the same basic steps you would go through when setting up a regular virtual call. 

1. First, if you haven’t already, create an account at Zoom.us and install the Zoom app. Then, open the app and select “New Meeting.”

Zoom options to start schedule, or join a new meeting.

2. You’ll be prompted to select your microphone and equipment (we suggest using an external mic for best sound — but Zoom gives the option to use your computer’s microphone as well). Once you enter the call screen, you’ll see a dashboard at the bottom with controls.

Zoom tool bar with the share screen on.

3. Zoom allows you to invite guests by clicking the Participants tab and clicking “Invite.” You can then select a participant to invite from your contacts or via email. Your guests will be able to join the call with a click.

4. Once you’re ready, click the “Record” button on your dashboard to start recording your meeting. Note that if you are on Zoom’s free version and are hosting more than one guest in your online meeting, your recording can only last 40 minutes.

That’s all there is to it! Have your conversation as usual, then click “Stop recording” when you’re done. Once you end the meeting, Zoom will automatically convert the recorded section into audio files and save them to your computer.

Your new folder will contain an mp3 (audio) file and an mp4 (video) file. You’ll need another program to do any additional edits if you like, but otherwise, your podcast recording is ready to export!

 Feel free to learn more about how to record a zoom meeting

How to Optimize Audio in Zoom

While Zoom is easy to use, it doesn’t always produce the best quality audio or video. That’s why if you choose to use this platform, make sure to take advantage of these hacks in the hidden settings of Zoom to improve your audio as much as possible. 

1. Enable Original Sound

Zoom naturally tries to cut out echo and interference to help the quality of your call with noise reduction. However, if you’ve got a good setup, a quality mic, and a quiet space, you can change those settings to help keep as much of the original audio as possible. 

Go into Zoom settings, then click “Audio.” Under ‘Music and Professional Audio,’ make sure the checkbox is selected next to the “Show in-meeting option to enable Original Sound”.

Zoom audio settings for choosing original sound

Then, you’ll be able to choose this option to enhance the audio during your recording. This setting may not make much discernable difference to the output, but it’s worth a shot. 

Every little bit of retained audio will help when you edit for production.

2. Record Speakers Separately

Zoom has the option to record each participant on a separate audio track. Make sure you enable this setting to have more editing capabilities during post-production. Note: Zoom does not give the option to record each participant on a separate video track. 

For instance, if one speaker’s volume was too low or they had a loud noise in the background, you’ll want to be able to adjust their audio without interfering with the other tracks.

To check that this setting is turned on, head to your Zoom settings, and click “Recording.” Then make sure the box is checked next to “Record a separate audio file for each participant.”

Downsides to Using Zoom for Podcasts 

While Zoom is an easy choice for beginners who are already used to the platform for work or recreational calls, the software has several disadvantages. It isn’t reliable when recording studio-quality videos for professional distribution to your audience. After all, it was designed to make online video calls, not as a remote recording app.

Because Zoom prioritizes virtual conferencing, it sacrifices audio and video quality to optimize speed and ease of use.  Zoom’s program uses compressed audio and video, meaning it removes portions of the audio track to make the file smaller. 

Audio compression helps your video chat flow more smoothly since the transferred data is in a smaller package. But the resulting file is less-than-optimal for professional-quality recordings — meaning that you may not be using Zoom for podcasting for very long.

Another downside to the Zoom podcast is that it takes place over a live internet connection, meaning the audio and video recording depends mainly on the quality and speed of your internet signal. If you experience a lag or a disconnection, the audio or video file will be interrupted.

Watch the video below to hear the difference between recording with Zoom vs a dedicated recording tool for podcasting.

Zoom Alternatives 

As technology has improved and standards continue to rise, several alternatives to Zoom have appeared on the scene to meet the podcasters’ specific needs. 

For instance, what about lousy wifi? Making a recording that isn’t reliant on a fast internet connection is preferred since you never know when your reception will be less than optimal. ‘Double-ender’ recordings, where each participant’s audio is recorded at their end, are especially useful for those recording interviews or remote podcasts.

Some professional podcasters have complicated double-ender recording setups requiring each participant to ensure the high-quality recording of their own feed. However, many podcasters are turning to remote recording software platforms that come with double-ender elements as their preferred alternatives to Zoom. 

Each platform listed below records every participant’s audio and video locally on their device and stores the recordings on the cloud in real-time.

Riverside.fm 

  • In-browser recording (Google Chrome only).
  • Up to 8 participants.
  • Download files: WAV, mp3, and mp4.
  • Cost: Tiered subscriptions ranging from $7.5-$24 per month.
  • Video resolution: It’s currently the only option on this list that records video in up to 4K.
  • Mobile support: Currently, there is an iOS mobile app for hosts and guests and an Android mobile app for guests.

Benefits of Riverside.fm Compared to Zoom

Once you’re ready to level up from Zoom, you can’t go wrong with Riverside.fm if you’re recording a distance video podcast. Riverside is a high-powered studio-quality audio and video podcast recording software.

While Zoom recording software compresses audio and video to optimize connection speeds, Riverside is built for podcasting. It prioritizes quality and doesn’t compress or cut away portions of the audio or video feed. The resulting recording is crystal-clear — which means your audience won’t be distracted or turned off by glitches, echos, or any other audio problems common with Zoom recordings.

While recording using call software often depends on the quality and speed of your internet connection, recording using Riverside means each participant’s feed is being recorded locally. So dropped or lagging connections won’t affect the result because the recording doesn’t depend on your internet reception.  

Riverside.fm’s podcast recording software is also easy for participants to join. Unlike Zoom, which works best if each participant has downloaded the app, Riverside works directly from your browser. 

Simply send your guest an invite link, and they can click to join in seconds. 

Finally, Riverside has many additional benefits that Zoom doesn’t offer, such as:

  • Progressive uploading: Your recordings will be uploaded to the cloud as you go, meaning you don’t need to wait for it to upload before closing your browser after you’re done.
  • Separate video tracks: Riverside gives you a separate, locally-recorded video track for each participant, making it easier to edit and stitch them together in post-production.
  • Live call-in: Your audience can call in with video during the recording.
  • Producer mode: Producers can monitor the recording and communicate with the participants during the session without being recorded. 
  • Host controls. Manually set desired frame rates and video resolution. The host can also monitor and adjust audio levels during the live recording, including guests’ equipment and balancing.
  • Custom branding: Design your own branded greenroom where guests can wait before joining the show. 
  • Shareable ClipsRiverside gives you an easy tool to highlight key moments of your podcast by creating short clips to distribute all over social media. 
  • Mobile Apps:  Podcast on the go with the iOS host and guest view app and the Android guest app.
  • Automatic Podcast Transcripts: Receive automatic, accurate transcriptions straight after recording.

How to Use Riverside.fm to Record Remote Podcasts  

Recording a remote podcast using Riverside.fm is as simple as using Zoom or other call recording software. Sign up for a free trial to check out the process for yourself.

1. First, create or log into your account. In your dashboard, you will be prompted to create your first studio. Decide on a title for the studio and choose whether you are recording audio, video, or both. Check that your settings for the recording are the way you want them. 

(If you need help choosing a podcast name, we also have a podcast name generator to help you.)

Creating a new studio on a Riverside.fm dashboard.

2. Enter the studio from your dashboard. The platform will check your connection speed and prompt you to input your name. Click on ‘Join studio’ to test your microphone, camera (and hair), and webcam. You can also do a mic test or webcam test before signing up.

The Riverside.fm green room where you can check your microphone and camera.

3. Once in the studio, your recording is ready to start! Hit the recording button on your dashboard when you’re ready to begin.

The host view when recording on the Riverside platform with two participants.

4. If you’d like to invite guests, you can enter their email in the dialogue box or send them the direct link to access the call.

The Invite dialogue box for inviting participants to a Riverside.fm studio.

For best results, all participants should use external microphones and headphones.

5. To use some of the bonus features, head to your settings. You can easily set up live streams to social media by inputting your profile access information.

The settings bo for a Riverside.fm studio opened on the recording settings.

 Once you’re done recording, Riverside will provide you with separate lossless tracks for each participant. You can download WAV, mp3, or mp4 files to use with your favorite editing software. You can also use Riverside’s Magic Editor to create Clips and a ready-to-publish podcast that you can share straight away to YouTube or Transistor.

Choose Recording Software that Meets Your Podcasting Goals

When you’re starting out as a podcaster, you probably aren’t a tech wizard who loves fiddling with sound levels and experimenting with the newest microphones. You don’t want to worry about complicated processes or pricey equipment; you want recording software that’s easy to use and dependable.  

Using Zoom as a podcaster recorder is popular for many creators because it’s simple and already widely used for internet video conference calls. While this video conferencing app does come with downsides, such as compressed audio, it can be a good choice for new podcasters who need a free platform that’s more or less reliable for maintaining a connection during a remote interview.

But when you’re ready to level up, consider software that doesn’t compress your audio or video. You’ll want to find a platform that’s just as easy to use as Zoom but provides many podcast-specific features. Riverside.fm is one of the best alternatives to Zoom. It gives you studio-quality audio and video, locally-recorded feeds that don’t depend on an internet connection and an intuitive in-browser experience that won’t leave you or your guests scratching your heads in confusion. With Riverside, you can easily podcast on the go with our mobile apps, and you can take your video content to the next level with easy editing tools and quick shareable Clips.

If you’re ready to level up your podcasting game, sign up for a free trial with Riverside today!

Subscribe to our newsletter

Highly curated content, case studies, Riverside updates, and more.

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

Related articles

7

min read

Vodcast: Everything There Is To Know About Vodcasting

Riverside.fm is an audio-video tool that collapses the pod/broadcast studio experience into your browser. The service captures lossless audio and up to 4K video locally, syncs it, and uploads as you go.

10

min read

The Complete Guide to Podcasting For Business - Riverside.fm

Riverside.fm is an audio-video tool that collapses the pod/broadcast studio experience into your browser. The service captures lossless audio and up to 4K video locally, syncs it, and uploads as you go.

9

min read

B-Roll Guide: What Is It & Why, When, How To Use It

Riverside.fm is an audio-video tool that collapses the pod/broadcast studio experience into your browser. The service captures lossless audio and up to 4K video locally, syncs it, and uploads as you go.