Using Studio Production Computers

Article 5 min
Watch Staff Sergeant Chris Duckworth of the American Forces Network (AFN) Radio Refreshers discuss radio board settings, computer settings, audio sources and playing audio live.

Board Settings

While your studio set up may vary slightly, the core concepts remain the same. Your board should be set up to allow you to record raw mic audio from all mics in your studio, which is invaluable during interviews. Be sure to set your mics to send to program two, which sends the audio to your production computer.

Before any interview, ensure you have a new audio file ready to record in Adobe Audition on your production computer. When a guest enters the studio, the first thing you should always, always, do is start recording the interview in Audition. An easy keyboard shortcut for this is shift plus space bar.

Symbol of an ā€œiā€ within a black circle representing a note of additional information. NOTE: Check with your local command to ensure you are using the most up-to-date and compliant audio recording software.

When your interview is over, end the recording. This provides you studio-quality soundbites free of bed music and other sound effects. You can repurpose this clean audio for your daily news elements, spots, video productions and anything you can think of!

PRO TIP: Press the space bar to stop recording!

Audio Sources

You can also use Audition to play audio from your AFN-approved production source libraries.

PRO TIP: Check with your affiliate for a list of approved sources!

Let's say you're doing an on-air bit about sports programming available on AFN, and you want to play a post-game interview clip from the latest pro football game as a sweetener to your content. Find an audio source from one of the approved websites AFN has access to and:

  1. download that clip
  2. and open it within Audition.

It's a good idea to hard limit this clip in Audition to even out the audio, so the element sounds smoother on air. This prevents any overmodulated audio from airing. Check with your affiliate for specific hard limiter settings.

Playing Audio Live

Silence all system sounds on your production computer by going to your Windows Audio Mixer and leaving only Audition as an output. Then:

  1. Select your clip audio track and ensure your play head is at the start of the track.
  2. Now, level your production computer output on your Axia board to -10.
  3. Ensure it's outputting into channel one and turn on your production computer output.
  4. Your production computer space bar now fires the clip on air.

PRO TIP: Press Home to go to the start of your clip!

Despite having your production computer output fired, nothing should air live at this point until you play the clip in Audition. When you begin your on-air bit, have your hands placed on the space bar to fire the clip at the appropriate moment in your talk break.

This is an easy way to bring diverse content to your show and can make your bits more dynamic. You can use this technique in nearly the exact same manner to play back recorded phone calls taken off air.

PRO TIP: Check out the AFN Radio Refresher on Taking Phone Calls for more information.

Computer Settings

You can use Audition to record songs or segments of songs from your AVRPS music library for use in your show.

  1. Load the song in AVRPS, click cut, then trims and tones.
  2. Scrub the play head in the AVRPS audio editor to the part of the song you want to record.
  3. Level your AVRPS pod on your Axia board to negative 10 (-10), and ensure it's outputting into program two.
  4. Open a new audio file in Audition and start recording.
  5. Play the song and record the part of the song you wish to capture.
  6. You can then use this song clip as part of a bit element during your live on-air show.

Symbol of an ā€œiā€ within a black circle representing a note of additional information. NOTE: In some AFN stations, you will level your AudioVault AVRPS pod on your Axia board to -10 and ensure it outputs into program four. It may be a good idea to reach out to AFN headquarters (Europe or Pacific) to get guidance to ensure you are following the most recent policies regarding licensing, broadcasting, sampling and remixing music.


"What's going on? It's time to play Finish the Lyric. Really easy; all you gotta do is finish the end of this lyric that I'm about to play, and you could walk away with some free movie tickets. [Space bar pressed to play song clip]

If you think you know what the ending to that lyric is, all you have to do is check out our Facebook page or give us a call, and you could be breaking free of that boredom, just like Ariana Grande." [New song plays and ramps up]

That's one use of a song. You can use these song clips in personalized liners, daily news elements, spots, etcetera.

Using your production computer to enrich your show allows you to get as creative as you want. As always, practice makes perfect. In no time at all, it'll be second nature. Have a great show!

Discover More You May Like

View All Articles