I get a little controversial in the episode as I address four of someone else's reasons why you shouldn't use Audacity. Don't worry, I remain loyal. I also share news about the BlackBerry Podcasts app for BlackBerry Smartphones.
Bradley Bradwell's four reasons against Audacity
From Brad's World of Online Trends (part of Chris Pirillo's network) comes his blog post, “4 Reasons Why You Shouldn't Use Audacity.” Although Bradley Bradwell makes some good points, I argue that they are mostly invalid and he even concludes that Audacity is “the best on the market in terms of free audio editing software.” What do I think? Check out his blog post and listen to my responses!
1. “You need to download the LAME”
Yes, it's disappointing that LAME (for encoding MP3s) cannot legally be included with Audacity, but I explain that it really isn't hard to find because it's linked from the Audacity download page, and Audacity even gives you a link straight to the instructions for Mac and Windows.
The installation process is actually simple enough that you don't even have to find the program you installed, just try to save the MP3 again and Audacity knows where LAME is.
2. “It’s unstable”
Although Audacity can crash and it has on me, I know exactly what I did to cause it. Usually, I tried to cancel a heavy process or I got impatient. During the live show, one of the chatters reported that he has used Audacity for six years and never saw it crash.
Make sure you're using the latest version! A lot of problems may be due to using an old version on new software and hardware.
3. “It has difficulty handling longer tracks”
This can make sense if you don't have much RAM, are running an intense process, or have several other programs running at the same time, but I have never had problems with long tracks. I have even recorded for more than two hours and edited the file! No problems there. Again, make sure you have the latest beta version. It's always a good idea to save often.
4. “The user interface can be challenging for beginners”
Interestingly, Bradley says within this point that Audacity is simpler than Garageband and concludes by saying, “Audacity is a great program for the everyday user.” I actually think that the best programs start with a blank “canvas” for you, the artist—or would you rather have Clippy?
As long as you know base select, cut, copy, paste, and delete commands, you can do decent stuff with Audacity. Also consider that it's the most-popular free audio-editor, so there are loads of video tutorials and step-by-step instructions on the Internet. I'll be producing some video tutorials myself!
I still stand by my recommendations of Audacity and will continue to use it until I have put my money first into equipment. Even then, I may buy something else instead of replacing Audacity.
Podcasting news: new BlackBerry Podcast App
Research in Motion (RIM) have released a free BlackBerry podcast client so you can find, subscribe to, and listen to podcasts on any BlackBerry smartphone. This is great news for consumers and us podcasters!
To submit your podcast to the new app, sign up for a free account (your username/email will be case-sensitive), go to the Podcasts menu in the upper-right, click Submit New, complete the simple form, and then Submit. It may take a little time to be approved, but I recommend that you jump on this right away.
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