Volume problems on podcasts, a comparison of two podcasts I listened to today

SFFaudio News

Geeks Guide To The GalaxySearch Engine with Jesse BrownDavid Barr Kirtley, who puts together and hosts Geeks Guide To Galaxy is responding to my complaint about his podcast being too low in volume.

But his show isn’t the only one I’ve had this issue with. Our most recent podcast, #155, also featured two out of three of us complaining about the volume of the Clarkesworld podcast.

I’ve also complained, by email, to Tevi Troy of New Books In Public Policy about the same issue.

Most podcasts are ok for volume. But there are some that are consistently low.

But to get a sense of what I mean I’ll use the two latest shows as my example.

So, picking on David Barr Kirtley again, I listened to Geeks Guide To Galaxy on my walk home from work today (the episode with Morgan Spurlock) – I could barely hear it at maximum volume. It was raining and there were cars on the roadway and because I wasn’t in front of my amplified speaker system at home I just couldn’t hear everything that was being said, and to make it worse to hear anything I had to jam my earbuds down my ear canals. A podcast should physically hurt me.

Here’s the Geeks Guide To Galaxy file: http://downloads.wired.com/podcasts/assets/underwire/geeksguide57.mp3

Now, compare that experience to the one on my way in to work today. I listened to TVO’s Search Engine. And right away I had my iPhone set to half volume of full, and at that it was plenty loud, loud enough, in fact, so that even set at half volume and with my earbuds hanging loosely over my ears, I could hear everything.

Here’s the Search Engine file: http://feeds.tvo.org/~r/tvo/searchengine/~3/mZBN588091g/801144_48k.mp3

And, incidentally, at home now in another comparison I’ve just made again, I can hear Search Engine from across the room at 3/4 volume through my iPhone speaker. The Geek’s Guide is at full volume and is not loud enough.

Posted by Jesse Willis

TVO: Search Engine: Digital Locks have Nothing to do with Copyright

SFFaudio Online Audio

Search Engine with Jesse BrownThe latest episode of TVO’s Search Engine, #127, updates us on the latest on Bill C-11. Host Jesse Brown interviews Russell McOrmand, of C11.ca (aka digital-copyright.ca), the hero who is blogging C-11’s progress through legislative committee.


Podcast feed: http://feeds.tvo.org/tvo/searchengine

Posted by Jesse Willis

Commentary: Where do you listen to audiobooks and podcasts?

SFFaudio Commentary

Where do you listen to audiobooks and podcasts?

I listen to a lot of novel length audiobooks while walking.

Pitt River Dyke, British Columbia

I listen to audiobooks when walking to work, from work, or walking a dog.

Short stories are for folding laundry, cooking or loading and unloading a dishwasher.

BBC Radio 4 - In Our Time with Melvyn BraggCBC Radio One - IdeasEntitled Opinions (about life and literature)

Depending on the length of the trip I either listen to audiobooks or podcasts while driving. Short podcasts are no good for long drives. So for longer drives I listen to BBC Radio 4’s In Our Time, CBC Radio One’s Ideas, or WKZU’s Entitled Opinions.

TVO Search Engine with Jesse Brown - Audio PodcastCBC Radio - SparkFreakonomics

There are a few podcasts I consistently like to hear only on weekday mornings, like TVO’s Search Engine, CBC’s Spark, and WNYC’s Freakonomics. They somehow just seem to set the right tone – and that tone just doesn’t work for me in the evenings.

The Memory Palace with Nate DiMeoToday In Canadian HistoryEli Glasner On Film

Some podcasts, like The Memory Palace, Today In Canadian History, and Eli Glasner On Film are so short I reserve them almost exclusively for walking to or from a car.

TriangulationGweekFresh Ink

At the gym, while pumping iron, I tend to listen to interview podcasts like TWiT’s Triangulation, or Boing Boing’s Gweek. On the stationary bike I watch G4’s Fresh Ink because that’s a video podcast.

BrokenSea Audio Presents: OTR Swag CastRadio Drama RevivalDecoder Ring TheatreI listen to audio drama almost exclusively in the evening. OTR Swag Cast, Radio Drama Revival, and Decoder Ring Theatre, are turned on in the minutes before I go to sleep.

Forgotten ClassicsUvula AudioNew Books In Public PolicyI listen to a couple of shows, Forgotten Classics and Science News Update, almost exclusively while getting dressed or clipping fingernails and toenails. I also listen to podcasts while in the bathroom – and that’s where my big pet peeve with podcasts comes most to a head – too many are just too quiet.

While brushing my teeth and when showering you need a decent volume to overcome the white noise of running water. I can’t listen to New Books In Public Policy in the bathroom, it’s volume is just way too low.

Where do you listen? And what do you listen to there?

Posted by Jesse Willis

TVO: Prisoners Of Gravity: Time Travel (1989)

SFFaudio News

Online AudioTV Ontario, which is now rivaling CBC for my highest affections, has placed episodes from their wonderful 1990s series Prisoners Of Gravity online. Prisoners Of Gravity was one of the inspirations for SFFaudio. If you like SFFaudio, you’ll love Prisoners Of Gravity. 25 out of 139 episodes are available (so far). Here’s an episode on Time Travel:

In this study of time travel, Commander Rick looks at science fiction books, comics, and movies that explore this popular theme. Guests include authors Judith and Garfield Reeves-Stevens, film director Michael Anderson, and writer P. Larry Hancock; and clips from “Young Einstein,” “Millennium,” “Rude Awakening,” and the television series “Quantum Leap” are featured.

[via Jesse Willis

TVO Search Engine: Interview with MP Marc Garneau about Bill C-32

SFFaudio Online Audio

TV0 - Search EngineJesse Brown of TVO’s Search Engine podcast interviews Member of Parliament Marc Garneau, the Liberal industry critic, (and former astronaut). Sez Jesse Brown:

The number of ways you can break the law by playing with your own property is set to multiply if the new copyright bill becomes law. An interview with Liberal industry critic Marc Garneau on whether he plans to let that happen.

Have a listen |MP3|

Here’s the Search Engine podcast feed:


Posted by Jesse Willis