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Recording phone callers

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Jason Jenkins
Recording phone callers
on Feb 19, 2015 at 6:05:00 am

I've been recording a 2-3 person podcast and they are asking about adding in a call-in participant. Anybody have experience with this?

Jason Jenkins
Flowmotion Media
Video production... with style!

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Richard Crowley
Re: Recording phone callers
on Feb 19, 2015 at 6:15:21 am

There are solutions ranging from essentially free to several thousand dollars. Depending on what issues you need to solve, what is your budget, what is your level of quality expectations. etc.


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Jason Jenkins
Re: Recording phone callers
on Feb 19, 2015 at 5:22:18 pm

[Richard Crowley] "There are solutions ranging from essentially free to several thousand dollars. Depending on what issues you need to solve, what is your budget, what is your level of quality expectations. etc."

My client wants to see what we can set up for a few hundred.

Jason Jenkins
Flowmotion Media
Video production... with style!

Check out my Mormon.org profile.


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Richard Crowley
Re: Recording phone callers
on Feb 19, 2015 at 10:31:49 pm

JK Audio makes a range of telephone interface products for basic interfacing. Note that you will probably need an old-fashioned analog telephone line (POTS = Plain Old Telephone Service). But they even make Bluetooth products to tap into cell phones, etc.

http://www.jkaudio.com/products.htm


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Jason Jenkins
Re: Recording phone callers
on Feb 20, 2015 at 1:02:19 am

[Richard Crowley] "JK Audio makes a range of telephone interface products for basic interfacing."

OK; trying to visualize the setup in my head. Can I just use a speaker for the local participants to hear the caller, or would it cause an echo or feedback due to picking up through the mics while simultaneously being recorded through the telephone interface?

Jason Jenkins
Flowmotion Media
Video production... with style!

Check out my Mormon.org profile.


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Richard Crowley
Re: Recording phone callers
on Feb 20, 2015 at 9:04:31 am

There is no generic answer to your question. It is quite possible that will work fine. But it depends a great deal on what kind of connection you have and what is being used at the other end of the conversation. If you are talking to the same person at the other end, then you presumably have some amount of control or at least influence over the configuration. But if you are accepting annonymous call-ins from the unpredictable general public, that is a different matter. The acoustics at the other end influence the quality of your recording, and the quality of the link echo-cancelling can make or break a setup.


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Bill Davis
Re: Recording phone callers
on Feb 23, 2015 at 6:33:46 pm
Last Edited By Bill Davis on Feb 23, 2015 at 6:35:40 pm

What Richard said above.

The traditional engineered solution that solves most of the problems is called a "digital hybrid" - and has circuitry to capture and release incoming calls and split the signals into various discrete feeds for recording or broadcast.

Most do expect a "hardwired" telephone, but you can satisfy that with any of the standard modern wireless home telephone devices like those sold by AT&T or Verizon that hook your analog phones into a wireless box with a phone number. You just have to maintain a subscription just like any other wireless device.

The other, cheaper approach is to use one of the on-line podcasting services that allow people to hook a mic to their computer for audio only signal sharing. Search "podcasting" and you can find lots of computer interfaces that do Mic to IP stream audio translations.

I've guested on "call in" type podcasts and webcasts where they've used iChat, Google Hangout, and Telestream Screencast and they've all worked OK. Not always great, and sometimes setup is a bit tricky - but in the end, the producers have all gotten airable shows.

Good luck.

Know someone who teaches video editing in elementary school, high school or college? Tell them to check out http://www.StartEditingNow.com - video editing curriculum complete with licensed practice content.


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