One Downside of Overcast's Speed Up Feature

I watched @MacSparky’s new shortcuts promo video on his website and I was confused about why he was taaaalllllkkkkkinnngggg so slowly and if he was okay. Then I realized I’m used used to David’s voice at 1.75x instead of normal speed…


A podcast host I know told me when he goes to conferences he sometimes gets odd looks from people he meets, and was mildly perplexed until one person mentioned they were used to his speaking at much faster speeds.

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They say you should never meet your heroes. I never want to meet the hosts of my favourite podcasts because I fear getting mad at how slow the conversation will go!

Especially if they are from Tennessee.


I don’t know how you guys can listen to anything faster than 1.3x. I’m 41 and that’s probably why.

The podcast Mac OS Ken is so slow at normal speed that the podcaster, Ken Ray, jokes all the time about people speeding up his podcast.

Not an age thing - I’m 58 and routinely listen at 2x to many podcasts, including MPU.

Depends on the podcast format and who’s speaking. I go as low as 1.3x for some podcasts, and when a musician is being interviewed I listen at 1x because they’ll generally play music samples.

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And Ken has gotten slower over the years. (Been a listener to that podcast since before the iPhone got introduced!) I currently listen to him at 1.5x speed, with Pocket Casts skipping the first 55 seconds to get past the intro/music. (And fast-forward set to 75 seconds to get past the bulk of the ad-reads.)

And to make matters worse, I’m a Newfie.

The only problem is when there’s a panel and Christina Warren is a guest, because Christina speaks at 3x, so you can’t ramp her speed up, or your head will explode.


Well THAT explains why no one ever wants to meet with me! :wink:

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The other implication is when your non-podcast listening significant other is in the car and you want to listen to a podcast together. “Can you pleeease slow this down?” :flushed:

There was a short period of time when Overcast had a speed selector in the CarPlay app. For some reason that was removed. I sure wish that would return… so very useful.

I’ve shared feedback with the dev a few times.



I’ve had multiple listeners tell me that if they listen at 1x, they think I’m high. Like some sort of California thing.

Nope, I just always slow down when public speaking and my brain treates the mic as the same thing as a crowd.


I totally smiled at this observation! My wife tells me she can tell when I’ve been listening to podcasts as I’m talking much faster and not pausing between sentences. Hmm. I sound normal to me…


This feature has ruined it for me to attend talks, most meetings or watch an interesting YouTube clip with my girlfriend present. Even for some series I’d be longing for a speed increase. Luckily movies are often captivating enough that I don’t drift off into thinking about speeding it up.

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I must say that Rosemary Orchard, over on Automators, speaks so quickly that I have a hard time following what she’s saying at my regular 1.7x speed! I find myself having to go back regularly to figure out what she’s said (as she often explains quite complex automations that aren’t so obvious to me, a non-programmer.) David on the other hand I could speed up even more…


Even at regular speed she’s hard to follow (in a podcast I mean). It’s not just the speed. It’s also articulation. One of the reasons I quit listening to Automators.

With old-fashioned radio broadcasts there was always some kind of station director who took care of these issues. But since everybody can start a podcast, you’ll loose that quality control.

I never noticed the disparity between the two and Automators is set to 2.5x, my default :thinking:I guess I simply attributed her talking style to her character and got used to it.

Maybe a neat feature would be “smart speed equilibrium”, which speeds one host up, the other one down to meet somewhere in the middle with a similar cadance at the desired overall speed-up rate.

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1.75x? I’m used to David at 2.67x…

Gotta disagree with this! Automators is easy to listen to—both hosts, too. I think I have it set to 1.67x and Overcast accelerates it to 1.9 or so.

I’m addicted to sped up audio and like what it lets me do, but also:

This happens to me too. It’s really very strange to have so many fast-paced voices on demand like this. I look forward to reading the inevitable health and sociology retrospectives on the podcast era. :wink: