ah how ironic, I'm just setting up for the recording that Lone wolf review I promised (the game book series not the submarine audiogame).
Anyway, given the current positions of my speakers i'm going to have to turn the volume up more than usual. As I'm now in my new flat with neighbors under my floor, I've been trying to keep volume related things down at more unearthly hours ----- in truth it'd probably be fine (I've been up all night reading Spellsinger vol 6 on cd), and not got any complaints, but stil I'd rather not cause trouble if I can avoid it.
Anyhow, to actually answer your questions, Luckily, I have a friend who's a very serious ameter musician and net radio Dj, so he's highly familiar with all this sort of stuff and provided me with explanations.
the 44 khz sampling rate is probably set as standard on most recorders, sinse it's what all Audio Cd's and mp3's etc use. In scientific terms this is to do with how many times per second the sound wave repeats, ---- ie, it's frequency, but I'll probably have to go and ask my friend again why precisely you must have this frequency for digital recorders (I'm going to see Pirates with him on Tuesday, so will ask him then).
Anyway, suffice it to say you probably don't need to worry about 44 khz.
the 96 kbps thing though is another matter (I do actually remember what this one means smile!).
Basically, kbps stands for killabytes per second, and has to do with how much info the sound wave has in it. Mp3's are able to be smaller files because they cut out lots of stuff at frequencies which humans can't here. the lower the kbps, the less information is contained in the sound wave, and the worse quality it is.
Generally, you won't actually notice the decrease in quality until you get to fairly low sample rates. But 96 obviously doesn't make a difference to the quality, while keeping the file size down, so it's a good idea to have your recorder set to that.
I'm afraid I don't actually know what a pack mate is, ----- it sounds to me like the person Packman goes to the pub with after a hard day eating ghosts, so I can't offer any specific recording advice.
As general tips though, I've advise making certain that your stuff sounds okay when played through windows media player, ---- preferably on speakers. Quite often I'll here something on my R09, through my rather nice headphones and think it's fine, then try to play it through the pc and find it isn't.
I'd also advise mucking about with positions of hardware and speaker placement, ------ though if you can reccord directly from your Pc you won't have to do this (hopefully I should be able to get my hands on a Usb mike soon so I won't have to do it either).
As to other guidelines, making a few practice runs, having a basic idea what you want to talk about, and being relaxed all help I've found.
There are no submition guidelines for Bct other than the ones you mention, so it's up to you how you cast your pod.
Submition is very easy. simply go to one of the Bct ftp sites, (the one I use is: ftp://dm.myftp.org/
Then just enter the password given on Bct (you should only have to do this once sinse the site will remember you), and copy and paste the file of your review into the internet explorer window. One of those percentage boxes should appear similar to when you download a file (though uploading seems to take longer), wait until that's at 100 percent and vuala!
Then, just send an E-mail to Larry Scuchan telling him what file you've submitted, with a brief description (I also let him know which server I've submitted to sinse there was once trouble with one of them), and it should get posted within the next week.
Well sorry about the long explanation, hopefully some of it will be helpful.
Now, I'm going to grab some coffee and actually reccord that pod!
With our dreaming and singing, Ceaseless and sorrowless we! The glory about us clinging Of the glorious futures we see,
Our souls with high music ringing; O men! It must ever be
That we dwell in our dreaming and singing, A little apart from ye. (Arthur O'Shaughnessy 1873.)