Ever wanted to setup live callers for your radio station? Every professional radio station takes live callers on-air as it connects you directly with listeners and makes for some interesting conversations.
The great advantage of chatting with callers is it fills air time without having to create content, plus you can talk with anyone in the world using your phone’s apps like Skype or WhatsApp.
It doesn’t matter if you run music or talk shows for either your station or podcasts, if you want professional sounding audio then here’s the right way on how to setup live callers for your radio station.
Setup Live Callers for Your Radio Station
If you want to jump straight in and get started then check out our video guide:
(P.S. This is the same set up we use to take live callers for our Internet Radio Podcast series).
What Equipment You Need
You don’t need expensive equipment to setup live callers for your radio station, instead you simply need:
The Behringer Xenyx 802 is a fantastic little mixing desk that comes with 2 mic preamps which allows you and a guest to have a microphone each whilst chatting with live callers.
Stand out features include:
- Volume Controls: Fade in and out live callers with the twist of a switch, you can even cut off live callers if need be!
- Preamp Microphones: Connect up to two preamp XLR microphones (dynamic or condenser), this way you can have professional sounding audio for both you and a guest whilst chatting with live callers on-air.
- Simplicity: Simple and elegant solution that’s easy to setup and use, you just need to connect and start broadcasting.
You can use any dynamic or condenser microphone to connect to the mixing desk – The Behringer B-1 for example is a solid professional condenser mic that’s ideal for live broadcast due it’s crisp sounding quality, plus it comes with a shock mount and stand as an added bonus.
Smartphone or Tablet
You can pretty much use any smartphone or tablet to connect to a mixing desk as long as you have the correct cable – A headphone jack to L/R will do the trick.
The beauty of using smartphones is you can either take live callers from your mobile number or use services like Skype or WhatsApp to talk with guests.
A pair of good quality headphones that are comfy to wear for long periods are a must if you’re taking live callers as for the most part you will be wearing them a lot.
Computer & Cables
Most computers or laptops will work, as long as they have a program like Audacity to record audio.
Make sure you have the right cables to connect all your equipment together like an XLR cable for your microphone, jack to stereo cable for your phone or tablet, and an output cable from your mixing desk to the microphone port of your computer.
How to Setup
Firstly connect the mixing desk to a power outlet, then plug in an XLR cable from your microphone to the number 1 XLR port – If you have a guest with you and a spare mic then you can connect it to the number 2 port.
You can either connect a smartphone or tablet to the mixing desk from line in 3/4 to your device’s headphone jack.
Connect a pair of headphones or earphones as it helps to know how audio sounds coming directly through the mixing desk, also it allows you to monitor and adjust your guest’s volume levels if need be.
Finally, plug in a cable from your mixing desk’s L/R output to the microphone jack into your computer. Now you’re ready to take live callers!
Taking Live Callers
Once everything is connected, open a program on your computer like Audacity to record audio or use broadcasting software like Nicecast to stream live to your radio station.
Do you have a different setup then us? Share how you take live callers in the comments below!