What's the best setup for a new podcast?
February 18, 2016 6:36 PM   Subscribe

Asking for my SIL: "I'm attempting an audio podcast for the first time and am trying to choose a media host. I would rather use a free site if possible, but I lack the technical knowledge to make an informed decision. Can people recommend a site?"

The podcast will be interview format, 30-60 minutes per episode, once every two weeks or so, if any of that makes a difference.
posted by olinerd to Computers & Internet (9 answers total) 13 users marked this as a favorite
 
Why not just publish on iTunes? It's best for ratings and discoverability.
posted by radioamy at 8:33 PM on February 18, 2016 [1 favorite]


I don't make podcasts, but I listen to several and they always seem to offer their podcast on iTunes, in addition to an open/free website, either SoundCloud or Stitcher. I personally never use iTunes and I do listen via either SoundCloud or Stitcher, but I agree iTunes is a good way for people to find your podcast.
posted by AppleTurnover at 8:44 PM on February 18, 2016


iTunes isn't a podcast host, though. They're a place you can post your already existing RSS feed that points to the podcast files that reside on the servers of your podcast host. From talking to friends who podcast, SoundCloud seems to be a popular free site for those who don't have any copyrighted music on it. Libsyn seems to be the best paid option.
posted by inturnaround at 10:25 PM on February 18, 2016 [4 favorites]


A podcast probably needs a website. Many cheap shared hosting plans have a lot of storage included. One of my podcasts just uploads the files to our WordPress installation. Using the PowerPress plug-in, a correctly formatted RSS feed is created and registered with iTunes, etc. (Other podcasts I'm involved with pay for Libsyn, Blubrry, and SoundCloud, but honestly the one on WordPress is the most popular and works fine.) A 30-60 min mp3 is 10-40MB, depending on encoding, if you need to do the capacity math.
posted by troyer at 11:17 PM on February 18, 2016


Lifehacker's guide to podcasting. I saved this in case I ever start a podcast because it seems like all the info you'd need. Hope it helps.
posted by kevinbelt at 8:05 AM on February 19, 2016 [5 favorites]


I've been podcasting for a few years. The short answer is that you'll probably need to pay for hosting, but can run an RSS feed for free.

The best options for file hosting are Libsyn and Dropbox. I would stay away from Soundcloud due to the alarming news coming out of Soundcloud surrounding monetary losses. I wouldn't bet on Soundcloud being around forever.

Dropbox isn't techincally a podcast host but you have:

20GB bandwidth limit and 100,000 downloads per day for free accounts
200GB bandwidth per day and no download limit for paid accounts ($9.99 per month)

Libsyn is a "safer" option since Dropbox technically isn't a podcast host, and it starts at $5 per month with unlimited bandwidth and 50MB of storage per month. This is enough for 2-4 episodes a month, depending on how long they and at what bitrate you master the file at. They'll also provide an RSS feed for you. I don't like "all in one" solutions like Libsyn because if you want to leave Libsyn, you'll need to go through the effort of redirecting your feed, which can be a pain.

Your RSS feed is very important--it's how people will get your podcast, which is why I like controlling it.

Depending on how techie your SIL is, I would either recommend:

$5 per month Libsyn account (all-in-one)
A combination of $5 per month Libsyn account with a free Wordpress blog for the website and RSS feed.

I've learned all this stuff over years of podcasting, so feel free to MeMail me if you want more information!
posted by Automocar at 8:45 AM on February 19, 2016 [6 favorites]


Here is a podcast on how to get started with podcasting by Paul Jarvis, who specializes in helping freelancers improve their businesses.
posted by ananci at 12:25 PM on February 19, 2016


You can find a lot of resources on AIR's website and Transom.
posted by radioamy at 12:51 PM on February 19, 2016


She'll definitely want a dedicated media host-- most web hosting services explicitly forbid media hosting as a violation of ToS.
posted by instamatic at 4:29 PM on February 19, 2016


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