When making a voice over recording (or voiceover, or voice-over... nobody appears to know for sure), the ultimate product is usually only the voice... all on its own... with little else to cover flaws. Yes, sometimes voice overs are associated with background music, like when narrating short videos, or in podcast intros and "outros." But typically a voice over recording is merely that, the voice. - Voiceovers
That being the case, the better the sound quality the better professional the final-result will likely be. In a perfect world we'd be rich and everybody can afford large diaphragm condenser mics and ideal analog-to-digital converters for our PC recording studios. But as we know, this is simply not the perfect world. The majority of us will only be able to afford inexpensive gear. That's OK. The methods I mention in this article enables you for the best possible quality from whatever mic you're using.
So what makes a good quality voiceover? Clearly there exists some subjectivity to the matter, nevertheless in general the voice ought to be clear, up-front, clear and understandable, have level volume (you are able to hear the loud parts and also the soft parts without pain or straining, respectively), and it is as noise-free as you can. Let's start at the start of the recording session.
1. Get Near the Mic- Ensure your mouth is 4-12 inches out of your mic. What you're going for here is to make sure the voice is recorded as loud as possible without overloading the mic or causing unpleasant sounds like p-pops, even though experiment with the distance. If your voice recorded loud enough or too loud, since we're using a pc recording studio for this, it's fairly easy to see. The voice shows up in recording software as wave forms (or "squiggly blobs" as I love to contact them) as to what looks like a swim lane on your screen. You want the blob to take as much of the swim lane as you can without ever touching the edges. Experiment with distance through the mic until you accomplish this.
2. Record Inside a Quiet Room- It's just about impossible, especially with a pc recording studio, to possess a completely noise-free environment in order to record. Nevertheless the lower the noisiness, the better. Control what you can. For example, close the door towards the room that you record to maintain out the household noises. Make an effort to position the mic far enough from your computer that this fan and drive noise isn't too loud. Sometimes using blankets or mattresses strategically can help here. Just don't block the pc vents or it might overheat. You might also want to choose a time of day when the neighbors aren't mowing lawns, or construction isn't going on nearby.
3. Decrease The Noise- After It's Recorded Most recording software (like the open-source Audacity) comes along with basic sound editing tools like noise gates and noise reduction. Since there likely Is going to be some noise, however little, inside the recording (you can't prevent all of it), you'll desire to employ one or both of the above editing tools. I recommend trying the noise gate first. That can shut out all noise during the silent bits once the voice is not really speaking, while allowing all audio (noise included) to move through when the voice is speaking. This works very well if you only have a little hiss or fan noise. Simply be careful that things don't sound too strange if the gate opens and closes. It is possible to play with the settings to create this sound more natural. Also, if the ambient noise is too loud, it can sound unnatural in the silent bits between speech when it suddenly sounds too quiet in comparison with when the voice was speaking.
If noise gating isn't enough, try a noise reduction tool. If overused, but be warned, this can make the audio sound strange. Noise reduction artifacts sound like the voice is under water... kin of "swirly," for absence of a better term. Noise reduction treats all of the audio, the speaking AND non-speaking parts. For it to operate right, you tell the pc what just noise looks like by selecting an area (where there is no speech) that is certainly ONLY noise. Like that the tool knows what to eliminate. If the noise was not too loud, this works well. Nevertheless the more noise inside the recording, the greater "under-water" it can sound after noise reduction. Test out this tool's settings to get the best result.
4. Squish the Audio Having a Compressor- Audio compression is something else that must be used with caution. You can easily ruin audio with way too much of it. Properly used, running this editing tool with even the audio volume so the listener can hear the softer, quieter parts And also the loud, exciting parts, without having to constantly turn the volume knob all around. A compressor will decrease the volume of only the parts which can be more than a certain loudness level (you decide on this level), leaving the quieter audio alone. This permits you, the audio creator, to boost the general volume of the voice-over without the of this being TOO loud. Remember after i mentioned looking to get the maximum amount of of the voice within the swim lane as possible without touching the sides? Compression lets you do that. When audio "touches the sides" it distorts, definitely a bad thing with computer audio. Play with the settings and experiment for the best result, as with the other tools.
5. Normalize- The last thing I usually do is apply yet another audio editing tool called normalization. Before the very loudest bit would distort, all this means is to increase the audio volume right up to the point. For example, if there is a yelling bit in the voice over, that part will show up as the "tallest" bit of wave form inside the swim lane. so normalizing finds that tallest (loudest) bit and turns everything until prior to the tall part touches along side it. This ensures the audio is really as loud as you can without distorting.
If you do those 5 things, you should end up with the best voiceover recording possible with any given microphone. The best part is that it won't cost you anything to employ these 5 home recording tips. Give it a see and try if your audio doesn't sound much better afterward. For further home recording tips, check out the Home Brew Audio website. Have a look at our videoarticles and tutorials, free downloads, and a lot more. View you there.- Voiceovers