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Portable Podcasting with an iPad: What Kit do I Need?

Portable Podcasting with an iPad: What Kit do I Need?

Nowadays, people are ‘on the road’ much more frequently. We commute further to work than ever before.  The once rare act of flying is becoming an ever more normal aspect of some people’s daily lives, with the result that some people even fly to work. As an example, my Dad is currently flying to Birmingham every Monday, staying in a hotel for the next 4 nights and flying back home on Friday.

Recently we were talking about his profession (an actuarial mathematician), and how none of his peers seem to be engaging in any form of social media. Hardly surprising, I suppose, since actuaries are not exactly known for being overly sociable beings. He talked about the possibility of setting up a Facebook page – I went one further and suggested a Podcast. It takes 5 years at university and then years of professional exams to become an actuary, surely these people must have something to say.

He quickly dismissed the Podcast idea, though. After all; “How am I to get all the recording equipment up and down the country every week?”

This got me thinking: what’s the easiest way to podcast when you’re on the road? Obviously not literally – please don’t try to record a podcast whilst driving on the M1! But is it possible to record and edit a good quality podcast with minimal equipment, whilst on your travels? Let’s have a look at a possible setup that would allow you to take your podcasting efforts on the road with you.

This is by no means the only way to create a Podcast on the move, but it’s easy, it’s good quality and it’s a great place to start!

The Computer

The Apple I-Pad 2

Thinner, ligh5741618002_01c3883419_oter and now with a 10-hour battery, Apple’s newest iPad comes with a powerful dual-core A5 chip and screaming graphics. The updated 10-hour battery means you’re not going to lose power in the middle of a session.

Doing a video podcast? Two built-in cameras on the front and back of the unit have got you covered. Ready to upload but don’t have any WiFi? Most of the UK is now covered by the 3G network and in major cities even 4G, which is sufficiently quick to upload a podcast without waiting around for hours. Just make sure your data plan covers it as the last thing you need is a huge bill at the end of the month!

The DAW (Digital Audio Workstation)

Garage Band

Where else are you going to get a DAW this powerful for less than a fiver? Apple has rebuilt GarageBand to take advantage of the iPad 2′s multi-touch screen. It offers eight recordable tracks, smart instruments and the ability to send your final mixed file out to iTunes. Or, for a little more flexibility, export the entire file to your computer to refine the edit.

Automate Your Podcast Production & Publishing

Alitu is a tool that takes your recording, polishes it up, adds your music, and publishes the episode, all automatically.

Learn More about Alitu

Alitu: The Podcast MakerOr Alitu – The Podcast Maker

If you’re looking for a much simpler editing and publishing option though, then check out Alitu.

At this moment in time, you’d still need to use Garage Band to record the podcast. But you can streamline and automate the rest by using Alitu – it practically builds your episodes for you!

The Microphone

The Apogee MiC

This little bad boy is creating quite a stir in the world of microphones. The Apogee MiC is a 4.5” tall studio quality microphone that fits into the palm of your hand. Best of all, it’s USB and can be directly connected to an iPad or iPhone as well as any computer! Here’s a sample of the little gem’s other features:

  • PureDIGITAL technology delivers pristine sound quality
  • Designed to record vocals and acoustic musical instruments
  • Great for voice overs, interviews and podcast recordings
  • No configuration, just plug in and record
  • Easily adjust input levels without accessing software
  • Multicolor LED for status indication and input level monitoring
  • Made for GarageBand on iPad and Mac
  • Includes desktop stand and mic clip

If you’re interested in getting hold of one of these microphones, have a look at the Apogee Microphones here.

Other Mic Options

The Shure MV51, Shure MV5, iRig, and the Zoom iQ5 are popular iPad mic options too.

The Headphones

Klipsch Image S4 dynamic in-ear Headphones

Made of chrome and black plastic, there’s no doubt that the Klipsch Image S4 ‘phones are a sleek and sexy bit of kit. But it goes beyond that, the audio quality is amazing, putting a bit of bones behind the great aesthetics.

There have been complaints that they are too mid-range focused, but for a podcasters this is actually a great feature, ensuring the buds are more tuned to a speaking voice as compared to other bass-enhancing earbuds.

You can find yourself a pair of Klipsch Image Headphones here if you’re interested.

What’s Your Portable Podcasting Setup?

So there’s my short example of how a portable setup might work. Any of these products can be replaced by a whole range of others out there on the market. So, just as you do when you’re on the road, go explore!

And, if it’s recording on-the-go conversations with others that’s your priority, check out our guide to recording interviews into your smartphone.

Need More Help?

If you still need help with your podcasting setup (or anything else podcast related) then we’d love to work with you too.

Check out The Podcast Host Academy, where we hold regular live Q&A sessions, run a community forum, and offer access to every video course, checklist, and ebook we’ve ever made!


About The Author


  1. Everything starts with the ZoomH4N (soon to be replaced by ZoomH6). When in a comfortable ‘silent’ room I love using the Yeti Pro. When noise can be an issue, I tend to switch to lavaliers for real mobile usage or desk mics (Behringer XM1800S is dirt cheap and brilliant here). Did I mention we usually have an average of 4 people on the podcast?

    I could stop here or connect the Zoom to my MBpro when I have it with me and put the recording straight in the laptop. Haven’t tested with iPad recording yet.

    I know, it can become a mobile studio quickly 🙂

  2. Hi Colin

    I have recorded 112 Podcasts in Spanish language with iPads and iPhones. This is my current setup:

    Recording in the field ( I do most of my recordings during my business travel):

    – IPhone 6S Plus TwistedWave or Ferrite apps
    – AT875r shotgun microphones or Audio Technica AT 897 shotgun
    – iRig Pro

    In my closet studio (to record intros and Skype interviews)

    – Sennheiser shotgun MKH 416 P48
    – DBX 286s
    – PreSonus AudioBox iTwo Audio Interface
    – IPhone 6S Plus (with Skype)
    – IPad Pro with TwistedWave or Ferrite apps

    All the final recordings are processed thru Auphonic Service.


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