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I have GAS

John Federico

I believe it was Jeff Strong who coined the acronym GAS, which stands for "Gear Acquisition Syndrome."

I'm in the middle of upgrading my audio gear to produce a podcast and I keep finding new and interesting gear that I just gotta have.


That, coupled with the fact that I just prefer to do things right when I get the chance (my, what a concept) I've been obsessing over sound quality and the gear to make that happen.

At the recommendation of Paul Figgiani, I just purchased a KEL HM-1 and am very pleased with it. It's my first condenser mic, so it's taking me a bit of fiddling to get the voice processing right. Since it looks like I'll be having a co-host (more on that later) I'm now toying with the idea of getting a second HM-1. Not sure yet...

I'm also wondering if I should get a 2x2 digital i/o firewire or USB audio interface, to separate the audio tracks for each speaker. Of course, we'll be in the same room and there will be bleeding across mics, so that might not make sense. If you have any insight on this, please weigh in.

And then, there are the remote recordings. I've a couple iRiver IFP units that allow me to record 128 kbps mp3 at a 44 khz sample rate. Even though it records at a high bit rate, it's still a compressed format. I'm contemplating the purchase of the newly released XtremeMac MicroMemo. It will let me use my 30 GB iPod to record CD quality uncompressed WAV files, comes with its own microphone or, will let me use a higher quality external microphone. It's also been released for $20 less than was originally specified. Nice...

Finally, with all the computers in my home office, it can get kind of noisy. I've been trying to figure out how to deaden the sound in the room. There's not enough space to use pre-built or DIY-built panels, but I think I've thought of a solution that could work well:

Combine some free-standing clothes racks with some extra thick protective blankets (the kind used when moving furniture) along with some mini spring clamps to hold everything together and voila! - portable, collapsible baffling. They won't be pretty, but that's OK - they'll go into a closet when they're not in use.

I'm going to build my first one this weekend (or next). I'll post pictures of the project and let you know how (if) they work.

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