usb mixer + 4 xlr microphones into laptop, with tascam dr60 mkii for BACKUP RECORDING
The above photo shows my setup in a conference room where we recorded an episode just once a month. This isn't your typical portable setup, however, the mixer was small enough to fit in a backpack along with my laptop, four microphones, four XLR cables AND my Tascam DR60 that I used as backup for recording.
Here's how this setup works.
I use four Senneheiser e835 XLR Dynamic Microphones for vocals, plugging them into channels one through four via male to female XLR cables. From the mixer USB output I run a cable into my laptop. In Adobe Audition, I've selected the ZEDi10 as the audio input source via my preferences panel. Each track, one through four in the DAW is armed to record using each channel number one the mixer as the track number in the DAW.
From the ZEDi10 mixer, I've run the AUX 1/4" output into my Tascam DR60 input 1, and record the entire board mix into one track on the Tascam's SD card, just as a backup, in case something goes wrong, which is never out of the question.
I plugged a pair of headphones into the headphone jack on the mixer to check levels for each channel, while also watching the decibel meter inside of Adobe Audition to make sure vocals are clipping in the red zone, causing distortion. I usually shoot for vocals peaking between -3 and -9 decibels.
The Allen & Heath ZEDi10 USB Mixer is a powerful mixer for the beginning podcast who is looking to have more than one person at the podcast table, and is also using a computer to record their audio. It also has on-board EQ which is really helpful. In total, there's a headphone out, main outs, monitor outs, AUX out and FX out, so it has multiple analog options for outputs. You could even run headphones out of those jacks, if needed.
Below is audio from an episode we recorded using this very setup.
As always, feel free to reach out via email at PodcastGearForBeginners@gmail.com with any questions or comments. Thanks!