Vocals are one of the most crucial aspects of audiobooks and other types of voiceovers. Listeners want the vocals to take center stage!
Several approaches, especially in modern times, make a vocal seem modern, fascinating, and professional.
If you want your vocals to sound bigger, more present, and in-your-face, you’ll need to learn few simple steps.
We’ll go through a few effects and ideas in the post below to help you make your vocals sound more intriguing.
Choose the Right Mic
Using a good microphone to record is an important component of the procedure. It’s certain that recording vocals on your phone will sound terrible. When you speak directly into a directional mic, such as one with a cardioid pickup pattern, it works effectively. Moving closer to the mic, on the other hand, causes a bass increase (known as the “proximity effect”). Depending on the vocal and performance, this might enhance or subtract from your sound. Sound hitting the mic’s sides will also be collared, which can happen in smaller studios due to room reflections reflecting back at the mic. A directional mic may be required when recording alongside other voice performers to avoid bleed. A high-quality, omnidirectional vocal mic, on the other hand, may provide greater results. To find out which pattern flatters your voice the best, experiment with both omni and cardioid patterns.
You may spend hours and hours mixing and refining, but if the basic recording isn’t up to par, you’re doomed to fail.
It is vital that you do not become complacent during this stage. If you have the opportunity, do many vocal takes and try out different microphones.
Accepting a bad recording and assuring yourself that you’ll “fix it up during the mix” is a huge mistake. Take your time, be thorough, and record a great voice performance.
Find a good room
The sound of your voice recording will be greatly influenced by the room you record in.
In a large environment, you will sound distant and difficult to comprehend. Consider yourself seated in the back row of a huge lecture hall or classroom. This isn’t ideal.
If the room is too tiny, the echo will be louder. Enter your bathroom and loudly clap or speak. You’ll understand what I’m talking about.
Another factor to consider is the room’s ‘hardness.’ The more soft the furniture, the better.
A room with many hard, reflective surfaces (such as a kitchen or bathroom) will always sound far worse than a room with many soft furnishings (like a living room or bedroom). Make a list of all the recording rooms you have access to. Choose a space with the most soft furnishings that isn’t too big (like a lecture hall) or too small (like a closet) (like a bathroom).
You’re not only recording your voice when you record. The microphone will also pick up on the surroundings around you and how your voice reacts with it.
You should also think about where you’ll put your microphone. If you get too close to the person speaking, you’ll hear all kinds of strange mouth noises and air puffs. In a large room, it may sound lost if it is too far away.
Ideally, the microphone should be around six to eight inches away from the person’s mouth and just below their chin.
Make sure the LAV (clip-on mic) is about six to eight inches below the speaker’s mouth if you’re utilizing one.
Also, pay attention to the surface on which you set your microphone. Some microphone stands are prone to picking up vibrations from the desk or table on which they are placed. On your test recording, listen for those kinds of sounds.
Have you ever had a conversation with someone who has an exciting story to tell, but they hurry through it so quickly that you can’t recall what they were talking about when they’re done? Or someone who drones on incessantly, threatening to put you to sleep?
This is what pace is all about. If you speak too quickly, your listeners will be caught off guard. They’ll become bored if you go too slowly. The best voiceovers move at a steady and natural pace. To assist you speak at a more natural pace, start with a script and practice it before recording. Remember that pacing includes things like pausing for impact or to give the listener a chance to assimilate key information.
This is perhaps the simplest and quickest technique to make a vocal sound pricey.
The top-end of most budget microphones is excessively high. If you’re using a less expensive microphone, simply increase the highs to get the same effect.
An analogue modelling EQ is the best way to do this. Start with a 2dB boost at 10kHz and a high shelf.
Experiment with the boost’s frequency and amount. You can go as low as 6kHz (while still remaining unobtrusive) and amplify by up to 5dB above 10kHz. Just make sure it doesn’t get too brittle or harsh.
Pronunciation and enunciation
Another important aspect of good voice over work is to make sure you pronounce each word correctly and speak clearly enough to be understood. Don’t mumble, but also don’t yell or over-enunciate.
Consider your regional accent (yes, we all have one) and pronunciations in relation to your target audience. While it’s entirely okay to pronounce have a fantastic “idear” in New England or “warsh” your hands in Missouri, however, individuals from other places may be confused by these pronunciations.
But don’t be over concerned. No one expects you to have the voice of a professional actor. The best thing you can do is talk clearly and naturally, and the rest will come with time and practice.
Warm up your voice
We warm up our voices so that they stay healthy, sound great, and are protected from harm. Warming up your voice will also allow you to pronounce things more clearly and comfortably broaden your range. Warming up before recording is an important must. Before you begin recording, warm up your voice by reading the script loudly. This allows you to discover the ideal volume, projection and pacing for your voice-over.
When you know how to do it and have the necessary equipment, recording voice overs like a pro is simple.
Taking the necessary precautions before pressing the record button, as well as spending the time to edit your audio properly, will go a long way toward ensuring that your voice overs sound professional and interesting.
Also, keep in mind that practice makes perfect! It will become more natural the more you do it.