Let’s talk about podcasting and live streaming. Two of the most popular thing that people are doing during this pandemic.
To those who are not familiar with podcasting, it is a series of episodes in spoken words which are consumed in audio form. Similar to a blog post like this where the author can say or do anything based on a given topic, it is distributed online as an audio form which can be streamed or downloaded from podcast apps such as Spotify, Apple Podcasts and many more. It has become more popular during the pandemic because people have more time now than ever before. No one is allowed to go out in most countries and travel destinations are closed.
Live-streaming on the other hand, although still related, we refer it more on live video streaming from platforms such as Facebook, Youtube, Instagram, Tiktok, Bigo, Sessions Live and many more.
Few years ago, if you talked about podcasting, or live streaming, you will immediately think of expensive studios, cameras, microphone and at least 2 production staff to be able to pull it off. Nowadays, you can do podcasting and live streaming alone. What makes it more interesting, you don’t need expensive equipment to do it.
Maono, after their successful Kickstarter campaign, built a more affordable yet all-in-one solution to start your own podcasting and even stream without even needing a computer. All you need is a phone and you are ready to go. Let me introduce you to the Maonocaster Lite AU-AM200. Don’t worry I won’t bore you with technical specifications and numbers because you can find it by clicking the link above. But instead, let us get to why is the Maonocaster Lite AU-AM200 is the only thing you’ll need if you want to start live streaming or podcasting.
The Maonocaster Lite AU-AM200
What’s in the box:
1. Microphone x1
2. 3.5mm TTRS Audio Cable x3
3. USB A to USB C cable x1
4. XLR to TTRS Cable x1
5. AM200 Podcast console
If you look at the number of stuff that’s included in the box, these are basically all you need to run a podcast or do live stream. Of course you will need a mobile phone ( can connect up to 3 mobile devices ). The podcast console is most powerful part of this package and it is packed with a lot of features you’ll be amazed what it can do.
This is most likely a threat to the soundcard V8 that most people use and because this is packed with many exciting features that the V8 can’t do, I would not be surprised if the Maonocaster Lite AU-AM200 will now be the new go to console for streamers and podcasters out there. I wont go through each features and functions of this Maono podcast console because this has been discussed among so many reviewers in Youtube. In fact, if you are interested with this, finish reading this article (promise it will be short) then go to Youtube and search about it. That was what I did before deciding to get this.
Probably one of the features I’m most excited about is the Side Chain function of the AM200 Podcast console. When this is enabled, the vocals will cut through the music smoothly to make it more prominent. During my test with it, I love how I don’t need to think of changing the volume of my background music when I speak and when I go on silence. It works like a charm. When I speak, the console detects my voice and effectively prioritize it over the music background then puts back the music volume when there is no voice detected. This feature is very important during a podcast and will also be a good addition if you are doing a livestream and now that I have an equipment that is capable of this, I can’t imagine doing a podcast without this function.
Livestream To 3 Multiple Devices and Platforms
Another exceptional feature is the capability to stream to 3 multiple devices at the same time. Because it has 3 3.5mm jack outputs those can be connected to 3 different mobile phones. All you need are 3.5mm converter to usb-c or 3.5mm converter to lightning cables. This means you can livestream to Instagram, Facebook and Bigo Live at the same time. That is even without any computer. One downside I could think of with your phone connected to the podcast console using the 3.5mm adapter is that you wont have the capability to charge anymore. Once the phone battery runs out, you’ll need to disconnect it to charge. One solution I could think of is by using a mobile phone that has wireless charging.
Four Programmable Pads To Save Audio
The Maono podcast console has 4 customizable buttons where you can save something that you most likely to play audio in few seconds. This is helpful for podcast intros, meme lines that you can add in your shows or livestream or even just a few seconds clip of a music that you can play when an event happens. This is time saving as you only need to press and hold it to record and play whenever you press that button. Holding it again will delete the recorded audio. Nothing really much to expound on this feature but this is one that I most likely will be using.
Music Only (Vocal FX)
Music Only as the name suggests, removes or fades the vocal playing from your music input so you can do either Karaoke and sing with it or just use it as your background on your show.
Denoise (Vocal FX)
It has advanced noise-cancelling algorithm to reduce ambient noise. This is an onboard function which when activated helps eliminate unwanted noises from your environment such as fan, computer noise, desk bangs and your neighbor talking. It does not eliminate all kinds of noise but it is a good thing that it at least removes the basic noises that you can encounter from where you are located.
Additional Great To Have Features
- Two Microphone input – allows you to have a guest on your podcast or during livestream
- Bluetooth connection availability – allows to connect a phone through bluetooth and use as music player
- 8 sound FX (opening, applause, gunshot, laughter, booing, awkward, slapping and cheering)
- XLR Mic included with mic stand and windscreen
- Earphone for monitoring (included in package) – long cord built durable
After seeing all the good stuff, let me show you the things I find lacking. Let us start with the microphone. For starters, this microphone is good if you are starting out and just want something that works. I still recommend using this microphone until you are ready to upgrade. I just think that for this bundle, you can never go wrong.
The mic works good if you are closer to it. Maybe 2 or 3 inches from your mouth and once you go beyond that, it picks up lesser of your voice. The microphone also can pick up more of your ambient sound so be careful and look for a good balance in using the denoise button. The good thing on the flip side is that Maono has other microphones you can upgrade to. You can always upgrade later once you are ready. So far from my tests, that is the only thing I have seen lacking on this combo and to be honest, I still think this is a good bang for your buck.
I would definitely recommend this to someone who would like to start podcasting or someone who wants to up their streaming and even to those who want to improve their zoom meetings be it at work or business and even personal usage. It’s gonna be fun to have this added on my streaming and podcast arsenal.
Those who would like to know more about the Maonocaster Lite AU-AM200, please search it in Youtube. There are a lot of reviews and detailed discussion about how it is set up and the features.
Please also check the links below if you are interested to get one.
Any questions, please comment below. I will do my best to answer them.