How to Watch a Movie and Listen to a Podcast Simultaneously

If you are a particularly nerdy individuals who enjoys watching movies while listening to director and cast commentary, you will love this. There are now podcasts that do the same! They start off with a few minutes of chit chat and you inevitably hear “OK here we go 3… 2… 1… play.” You click play on the movie at the same time and you’re good to go.

Blank Check: Special Features is one of these podcasts (also on my faves list). For $5 per month you can watch a movie and learn a bunch of random facts while being thoroughly entertained. The problem is I want to watch the movie on my iPad and listen to the podcast on my Mac. This requires software. Don’t worry; I did the research and figured out a setup for you. Three applications made by Rogue Amoeba are required:

  1. Airfoil — $29

  2. Airfoil Satellite — Free

  3. SoundSource — $39

Airfoil is an amazing tool for sending and receiving audio between devices. It is not actively used in this setup, but its license unlocks the companion app. Airfoil Satellite allows you to receive audio from another device using AirPlay. SoundSource gives you granular controls over audio output on your Mac.

Airfoil Satellite

Again, I enjoy watching movies on my iPad, and listening to podcasts on my Mac. The goal is to hear both the movie and podcast audio in one set of headphones. First, launch Airfoil Satellite on your Mac. Then hop over to your iPad.

  1. Start playing a movie.

  2. Tap the AirPlay button to launch its menu, and, if Airfoil Satellite is open on your Mac, you will see your Mac in the “Speakers & TVs” list.

  3. Tap on your Mac’s name. Mine is “DKMBP.”

Now the movie’s audio on your iPad should be playing through your Mac.

Neat, right? You can stop here, but the extra bit of control over each source’s volume significantly improves the experience.

Soundsource

Open SoundSource on your Mac. SoundSource appears as an icon in the menu bar that unfortunately looks virtually identical to the macOS Sound menu bar item. Click on the SoundSource icon to open its panel and view a list of applications that are currently producing sound. I use Flotato to create a dedicated Overcast app for playing podcasts. If Overcast and Airfoil Satellite both used the same volume control, it is difficult to clearly hear both the podcast and movie. I need to slightly adjust the volume of one source to ensure I hear everything. Trust me: the commentary is worth it.

Play with the various volumes until you achieve a balance that works for you. Maybe you want to barely hear the movie and focus on the podcast. With SoundSource that is possible.

Let me know if you have any questions. Yes, I really do this.