Ultimate Guide to Podcast Production

Podcasting is a great way to tell a story, promote a brand, or show off your comedic chops. Lucky for you, producing a podcast isn’t complicated. We’re going to give you a complete rundown on how to plan, record, edit, mix, and master your podcast.

Learn more about how to produce podcasts, and how tools like iZotope RX can help you create a professional-sounding podcast.

Learn more about Podcast Production in part 1 of this article.

How to Edit Podcast Audio

While there are many aspects of editing podcasts, these are basic steps and techniques used to achieve a professional sound. Use these steps as a podcast production checklist. 

How to Clean Up Voice Recordings for Videos and Podcasts

Chris Vandeviver shares how to get professional, clear sounding voice recordings for videos, podcasts, streams and more with RX.

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Editing your podcast audio involves cleaning up audio issues and editing the content itself—taking out extraneous words, and pairing down conversations to keep listeners engaged. It also includes later steps like mixing and mastering to get your podcast ready for distribution.  

1. Edit your podcast content

The listener’s time is precious, so make your message clear, concise, and professional when podcast editing. Trust us: you have no idea how many “ums” and “ahs” you pepper into your speech. Take these out wherever you can—but be sure to keep it natural. 

One of the biggest things that distracts from the content of the podcast is audio inconsistency, most notable being volume. This is one of the first things to address when editing a podcast, using clip gain to get each file to a balanced starting point.

Limit the dead air in the recording. If you find a subject was repeated, or if your attention starts to flag while listening back, don’t hesitate to pair it down while editing. But again, keeping it natural is key. 

Editing can be overdone, however, so challenge yourself to get the best possible read in one segment.

2. Clean the podcast audio

With your project edited and organized, you can now attend to problematic audio. There are many ways to go about cleaning up your podcast audio. iZotope RX is a powerful audio cleanup and background noise removal tool that can help make your podcast sound professional. 

We’ve outlined some of the most common methods to clean everything up using RX below:

This can take your audio from sounding cluttered and distorted to sounding like it was recorded in a state-of-the-art studio. 

Podcast Audio Before & After RX De-Noise

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3. Podcast sound design

Lots of podcasts utilize sound design to stand out. Consider if a music bed, placed under specific parts of your podcast, might help drive the narrative. You can compose the music yourself, or use a service like SoundStripe to license tunes. 

Audio effects (transition noises, risers, swoops, whooshes) can enhance a podcast, indicating segment changes or simply adding color. However, make sure the sonic palette of your podcast isn’t overly stuffed: sound design will immediately draw in some listeners and infuriate others; lots of people love Radiolab, and scores of people absolutely hate it. 

For more on learning how to sound design podcasts, check out this tutorial on sound designing a fiction podcast


4. Mix and master your podcast audio

When it comes to mixing podcasts, a light touch is the way to go. Here are some tools and techniques you’ll want to use. 

  • EQ: You can consider employing a high pass filter, which only allows sounds above a certain frequency to pass through. Everything else will be filtered out. Because most speaking voices don’t generate any fundamental frequencies below about 85 Hz, you can set a high-pass filter around 80–100 Hz to help remove both rumble and plosives that your listeners won’t want to hear. 
  • Compression: Simply speaking, compression takes sounds you deem as too loud and turns them down. This is done to even out the differences between loud and quiet passages of audio. After compressing louder sounds, you can turn up the vocal track without fear of distorting the mix, making everything seem louder overall. This can be helpful when people are listening to your podcast in noisy situations like a subway, car, or bus. Compression is especially useful on the ends of phrases, which often dip in volume as a speaker runs out of breath. Like EQ, compression shouldn’t be used in extremes. Start with a ratio of 2:1 and lower the threshold of the compressor until it activates only on the loudest sounds.
  • De-essing: You can think of a de-esser like a compressor, only for sibilant, spitty frequencies. It will dynamically duck the voice, but only when triggered by the sibilant range (typically 4 to 9 kHz).
  • Mastering: The Master Assistant in iZotope Ozone is great for getting podcasts to a suitable level without squashing them. Run the assistant and bypass everything but Dynamic EQ and the maximizer. -16 LUFS is shaping up to be the standard level, so use the built-in LUFS metering to make sure you're hovering around there.

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Learn More About Podcast Production and Audio Cleanup

Below are a series of helpful resources to get you started on getting clean, professional-sounding audio. 

Learn podcast audio cleanup, mixing, and mastering from iZotope tutorials


We’ve partnered with dozens of professional engineers to help you produce high quality audio through video tutorials and intuitive guides.

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Learn how to clean up audio with the pros

Who will “RX it” better? Watch as two experts face off to fix complicated audio problems in 10 minutes.

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Learn more about Podcast Production in part 1 of this article.