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About Fireside

Built by long-time podcaster and developer Dan Benjamin, using the years of experience he gained running 5by5.tv (both content and infrastructure), Fireside is a solid service for those who take their podcast seriously.

Along with audio hosting, analytics and a website for your podcast, Fireside also provides rich show notes, allowing for the addition of host and guest bios, and a blog. If your podcast has multiple hosts who aren’t on every episode, you can specify the hosts that appear on a per-episode basis, and visitors to your website can see who hosted which ones.

For Benjamin, podcasting means going live-to-tape, and having show notes with lots of links, so Fireside has tools that make it easy to gather links to the topics you discuss, while you record.

If you’re relatively new to podcasting, or you just like badges, there’s a lightly gamified element to the Fireside content management system, that lets you earn achievements for reaching important milestones.

About LibSyn

LibSyn is almost literally the first name in podcast hosting. They provide a rock-solid infrastructure and every possible feature you would expect from a mature platform. They have a huge user-base and run regular community events, many of whom are experienced podcasters who rely on LibSyn to run reliably.

LibSyn differs from most hosts in that it provides different RSS feeds for different apps and directories (as it calls them “destinations”) which is perhaps unnecessarily confusing, however when new directories and markets are opened up, LibSyn is almost always first in-line to adopt them.

The company is conservative in its development, often taking multiple years to roll out interface updates. This has meant they’ve fallen behind modern hosts whose designers and developers value user experience, however they offer support via email and they’ve been around for so long and have so many customers, that answers to most questions can probably be found in Facebook groups and Reddit threads.

Fireside Starter vs LibSyn Classic 250

You can upload more episodes with LibSyn. They're also more generous with bandwidth. They will also autopost your episodes to YouTube. However, Fireside has the best price for this plan. They also offer more storage at this tier. Fireside allows for a custom website on this plan too.

Fireside LibSyn
Price $9.00 per month $15.00 per month
Number of podcasts 1 1
Episodes 5 per month Unlimited
Downloads 10,000 per month Unlimited
Storage Unlimited 250 mb
Podcast website included
Use your own domain
IAB certified metrics
Republish to YouTube
Podcast network support

Fireside Standard vs LibSyn Advanced 400

Fireside has the best price for this plan. They also offer the ability to host more podcasts. They also offer more storage at this tier. Fireside allows for a custom website on this plan too. You can also hook up a custom domain to your website. However, LibSyn are more generous with bandwidth. They will also autopost your episodes to YouTube.

Fireside LibSyn
Price $19.00 per month $20.00 per month
Number of podcasts Unlimited 1
Episodes Unlimited Unlimited
Downloads 75,000 per month Unlimited
Storage Unlimited 400 mb
Podcast website included
Use your own domain
IAB certified metrics
Republish to YouTube
Podcast network support

Fireside Professional vs LibSyn Advanced 800

Fireside offers the ability to host more podcasts. They also offer more storage at this tier. Fireside allows for a custom website on this plan too. You can also hook up a custom domain to your website. However, LibSyn's plan is cheaper. LibSyn offers IAB-certified stats, whereas Fireside doesn't. They will also autopost your episodes to YouTube.

Fireside LibSyn
Price $49.00 per month $40.00 per month
Number of podcasts Unlimited 1
Episodes Unlimited Unlimited
Downloads Unlimited Unlimited
Storage Unlimited 800 mb
Podcast website included
Use your own domain
IAB certified metrics
Republish to YouTube
Podcast network support

Other considerations

Fireside's user interface is a bit nicer than LibSyn. Fireside allows for Podcasting 2.0 transcripts. Fireside attempt to protect against feeds being imported into other providers without your consent. Fireside allows you to designate portions of your episodes that can used to create audiograms in apps like Headliner. Fireside works with apps that support Bitcoin donations.