Welcome to our recording studio

The short version

If you’re in a pinch, here’s the basics of what we need. If you need more detail, you’ll find it below.

  • We record online using a tool that works on Google Chrome and Microsoft Edge. Make sure you have one of those browsers installed, and open the Riverside link in that browser.
  • Riverside will ask to see your webcam, but we won’t record it.
  • Please wear headphones – it makes a huge difference.
  • Once we’ve stopped recording, please wait while your audio is uploaded (we’ll tell you when it is).

The technical stuff

Riverside runs on Macs, PCs, iOS and Android devices.

  • If you have a Mac, please download and install Google Chrome if you don’t already have it. If you’d rather not use Google’s browser, you can download Brave – it works exactly the same, but without Google snooping.

  • If you have a PC, the built-in Edge browser should be fine. If you don’t have or use Edge, you can download Chrome or Brave.

  • If you have an iPhone, iPad, or Android device, you can install the Riverside mobile app.

  • Riverside doesn’t work well on Chromebooks. If you have a Chromebook and don’t have access to a Mac or PC, please use a phone or tablet and download the mobile app.

OK, that’s the hard stuff out of the way.

Mics, camera, action!

  • Riverside will ask to see your webcam, but video isn’t recorded – it just feels more natural when you can see the other party.

  • That said, we sometimes like to take a screenshot of everyone after the recording, for the podcast team to post on social media. If you don’t want to, you can disable your camera or just ask us not to take a screenshot.

  • When we hit Record, Riverside will record your mic and periodically send that audio back up to the cloud. That means if your internet drops out for a second, we’ll hear it on the call but the recording will be unaffected.

  • Please hang on the line for a bit after we’ve finished recording, so we can wait for the last bits of your recording to trickle up to the cloud. We’ll let you know when that happens.

  • We greatly appreciate it when guests wear headphones. If you don’t, it makes the editing process harder (and ultimately the show not sound quite so good) as your mic will pick up others’ voices from your computer. Wired headphones are best, but they don’t have to be fancy.

  • Please set your phone to Do Not Disturb, and close any apps on your computer that might go “bing!” (like email or WhatsApp for desktop).

We know there are a few tech considerations, but we like to get them out of the way ASAP so everyone can have a relaxed conversation.

The recording session is not live, and everything is carefully edited. So if you need to take another run at a sentence or you say something you might want cut, just flag it with us.

⚠️ If you join the call and you can’t hear us

  1. Don’t panic. We’ve got plenty of time.

  2. Check you can hear other sounds from your computer by playing the video above. If you can’t hear it, adjust your computer’s volume. If you’re using headphones with a normal headphone adapter, make sure they’re plugged all the way in.

  3. If you can hear the video but you still can’t hear us, back in our virtual studio (the browser tab will be labeled “Riverside.fm”). Click the button labeled “Speaker” right at the bottom of the window, below our faces. Look for an option either labeled “Default output” or “Headphones”. You might find a couple of options, so if you don’t see them or they don’t work, try another one. One of them should work.

  4. If you’ve tried everything and you still can’t hear us, you’ll see a Chat tab on the right-hand side of the studio window. Click that tab and you may see a message from us. We can see what camera, mic and headphones/speaker you’re using so we may be able to guide you in text.

Whew, we did it!

Thanks for taking the time to read this guide. Now, relax and enjoy your conversation.