"Explain Like I'm 5": Impedance July 18, 2013 16:20 10 Comments

When I sent out the newsletter announcing the last "Explain Like I'm 5 Podcast," I asked which audio topics you wanted to hear explained to a 5-year-old. As as result I now have a list of over 25 topics for future shows! But the response I got the most was "impedance."

One reader even taunted me: "Haha, explain impedance like I'm five..good luck with that ;)" Challenge accepted, buddy!

Impedance is one of those audio concepts that comes up at almost every recording session or live sound gig, even if you're not aware of it. Grasping the basics of input and output impedance can make you aware of potential problems before they happen, and help you problem solve more quickly and confidently. And the truth is that the fundamentals of impedance are simple enough that you can learn them from a 15-minute podcast.

In today's ELI5 podcast, I begin with a discussion of acoustics before moving to electronics to show you that you already know more about impedance than you probably think. I go on to cover exactly what input/output impedance specs mean, illustrate the concept of impedance with examples from the studio, and explain what impedance mis-matches can do to your sound.

Download the mp3 or subscribe via iTunes.

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Do you understand impedance now? How easy was the podcast to understand? Is there any other topic you'd like to hear explained as if to a 5-year-old? I welcome your feedback in the comments.