Do you have a bad habit of saying too many um’s and ah’s? Does your wife scream in the middle of your recording? There was an awkward 20-second silence when you blanked? You need not be ashamed or upset if you have a good audio editing tool and some skills. Podcast editing is not hard to learn, and the good news is that there are some great free podcast editing software tools out there.
The first thing to know is that editing software does not change the quality of the sound like microphones and interfaces do. When it comes to audio editing software, more expensive/complicated doesn’t mean better. You want to pick something that is intuitive for you and does the jobs that need to be done.
Audacity and GarageBand are the most commonly used free audio editing software. Even though Audacity can do a few things that GarageBand does not do, they both have the basic functions needed for editing a podcast. GarageBand is pre-installed on Apple computers, and many Apple users use GarageBand.
If you are more ambitious, experienced, and not broke, you may try some of the paid options that have more advanced editing tools. If you want to check out Reaper, you can get a 60-day free trial. You can purchase it for $60 for a discounted license and $225 for a commercial license (one-time payment). Also, Audition by Adobe is a great one if you are already using and proficient in some Adobe software, or already subscribing to the Adobe software package. Audition by itself is $20.99/month, and subscribing to the Creative Cloud Apps package is $52.99/month. It is more expensive, but they also have discounts for students, teachers, and businesses.
Pro Tools is for professional audio engineers and is probably too complicated for a beginner or casual users. However, if you want to not only edit spoken words but also edit music for others professionally, this is the industry standard. It is subscription based. Logic Pro X is another software from Apple which is great for editing both music and spoken words. For $199.99, you get a large step-up from GarageBand.
While these options are nice, they also might be a little overkill for a journeyman or even an experienced podcaster. Unless you really think you need it for your unique circumstances maybe try a simpler/cleaner solution for your podcast editing software.
Soundtrap is the rising new option that has the potential to revolutionize the way we edit audio. It is not a software but a website that lets you edit audio and share the audio files with others. It is like Google Docs for audio. Their workflow is simple, and you can create a link to share the audio. Their interactive transcript feature will automatically transcribe your podcast, making it easier to be found online. Soundtrap also lets you directly upload your show to Spotify. It is subscription based, the Storytellers Plan ($11.99/month) is designed for podcasters, and they also have a free trial for up to 5 projects.
Soundtrap works really well if you use it in tandem with other tools like Zencastr. Where you can record all over the world.
Ableton is an audio production software, and the workflow is not meant for editing recordings. Stay away from it if you want to edit podcasts.
Also, a major thing to remember is the while making your podcast sound good is a very important thing, but more important than editing is making sure you have good content. Remember content on the internet will always be king. Good podcast editing software is awesome, but great editing content brings more value.
If you want to learn more about audio editing software for podcasting, feel free to book a time with us.