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Great content, easily sidetracked

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Review by Woodknack posted 09-27-2016 05:21 PM 2009 views 0 times favorited 7 comments Add to Favorites Watch
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I thought I would review some woodworking (and related) podcasts. I often prefer podcasts over music while in the shop or on drives. Previously I reviewed the 360 Woodworking podcast.

Shop Talk Live is a twice monthly, 1 hour, podcast by Fine Woodworking’s Tom McKenna, Mike Pekovich, Matt Kenney (It seems they switch this up once in awhile). Mostly they answer listener questions but also have guests and talk about the magazine and woodworking trade shows. I’ve been a listener since last winter. Technically the audio is very good but it sounds like they are too close to their microphones, certain sounds (like P) create a puffing sound like someone is spitting into the mic (probably a term for that but I don’t know it). The audio on the youtube video is the same but sounds muffled, clipped, or something; in any case the YT audio is slightly less good than the itunes version. And for some reason the Youtube version is only 360p which is ridiculous. Popular Woodworking used to do the same thing, upload videos in really low resolution. One very bothersome thing is at least of the guys says, “umm,” a lot. Please stop doing that. The woodworking content is excellent. The guys sometimes disagree and that is interesting too as I enjoy getting different perspectives on a technique or solving a problem. When answering listener questions I would suggest they set a time limit for each question because they tend to ramble on after giving an answer, exploring many possible variations of the question and answer with each one taking them farther off topic. I don’t mind exploring a topic but the simpler the question the longer they spend on it and I lose interest pretty quickly. There is another podcast I will review soon where they do the same thing. For the most part the guys are personable but their laughter sometimes feels forced and one particular person’s humor sometimes has an edge. They openly joke about getting in trouble with advertisers and sometimes I’m surprised they speak as freely as they do but no doubt just as often they are holding back, a side effect of choosing advertising as a revenue stream. Overall it’s a very good podcast. The advice is good and I do learn from them.

Links:
http://www.finewoodworking.com/blog/shop-talk-live
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLPk1h9z7A1oIE4Y-jNrRM-lN9nixeLu0Y

-- Rick M, http://thewoodknack.blogspot.com/




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Woodknack

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7 comments so far

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BenjaminNY

130 posts in 1397 days


#1 posted 09-28-2016 01:40 AM

I’ve listened to this podcast since the beginning and I usually find it to be informative and pretty funny. The guys have a good sense of humor if you realize that they do not take themselves all that seriously. The episodes with Roland Johnson and Asa Christiana are worth seeking out, they tend to be the most hilarious simply because they were the least self-conscious contributors for better or worse.

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CharlesA

3319 posts in 1792 days


#2 posted 09-28-2016 02:33 AM

I think their segment, “favorite tool, technique, style, etc.] for all time, for this week” is the best regular segment on any woodworking podcast because it goes beyond reader questions and highlights things that wouldn’t come up any other way.

-- "Man is the only animal which devours his own, for I can apply no milder term to the general prey of the rich on the poor." ~Thomas Jefferson

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Woodknack

11608 posts in 2375 days


#3 posted 09-28-2016 02:45 AM

I meant to mention that Charles and it slipped my mind. I like those too.

-- Rick M, http://thewoodknack.blogspot.com/

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felkadelic

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#4 posted 09-28-2016 10:17 PM

This is probably my second-favorite woodworking podcast (WoodTalk is my favorite). I generally find Shop Talk Live to be entertaining and informative, but I’ll admit that I find their guest interviews lacking. Often the audio quality is poor (when the guest calls in for the interview) and personally I’m not interested in how someone became a professional furniture maker (which is what these interviews often discuss in detail). I do enjoy their “All Time Favorite…” segments great.

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Woodknack

11608 posts in 2375 days


#5 posted 09-29-2016 02:18 AM

Woodtalk is not for me. I don’t like the forum either.

-- Rick M, http://thewoodknack.blogspot.com/

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CharlesA

3319 posts in 1792 days


#6 posted 09-29-2016 03:58 AM



Woodtalk is not for me. I don t like the forum either.

- Rick M.

I’m surprised. I think Woodtalk is the gold standard in terms of production of the woodworking podcasts. No awkward pauses, who’s supposed to introduce each piece, good interaction between the hosts, etc. I think something like 360 demonstrates more knowledge, but the folks who do Woodtalk know how to produce a podcast. Sometimes when I listen to the other podcasts, I have this deep desire to tell them to listen to Woodtalk and learn from it.

-- "Man is the only animal which devours his own, for I can apply no milder term to the general prey of the rich on the poor." ~Thomas Jefferson

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Woodknack

11608 posts in 2375 days


#7 posted 09-29-2016 04:45 AM

Yep, I don’t dispute the quality of the the podcast but I can’t get into it. I think you have to be into the personalities and I don’t know them or watch their videos.

-- Rick M, http://thewoodknack.blogspot.com/

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