Recording A Voice-Over: Everybody makes mistakes. They are inevitable. But to be the master of your craft and the best in your class at what you do, you need to be able to find a way to limit the mistakes and instead gain near perfection.
As a successful commercial voice over artist, you need to be able to adapt when mistakes happen and keep on going, so that you avoid making the mistakes that are noticeable and instead focus on a top-quality voice over.
Here are main mistakes made when recording a voice-over and how you can avoid them :
Low Quality Equipment
The biggest compromise you have to make when choosing recording equipment is quality versus budget. This is one of those distinct times that you have to concede and understand that the better the quality of the equipment used, the better the quality. The most successful commercial voice over artists implore that you take time to research and understand the equipment that works best for you.
Microphones are essentially the most important part of the job so allocating a sizable part of your budget and getting the right microphone for the job, will allow you to avoid re-mortgaging your house and help you deliver crisp, quality and clean audio. (You can then be mega successful and buy the best quality stuff- just deliver good quality to start with)
Take the less is more approach when editing your voiceovers. The main need for editing (and the biggest mistake made) is eliminating background noise, echo and reverb. Overuse of noise reduction can result in ‘hollow’ and ‘echoey’ audio, which is a common beginner voice over mistake- and highly noticeable by clients.
Instead aim to treat the issues at the sources and make sure your recording area is soundproofed, and there’s no background noise or echo.
The cleanest cut is one where there is minimal editing and the sound of your voice is the main attraction.
Lack of Authenticity
Probably the biggest mistake you can make in this game is not being yourself. Awkward forced or just plain boring reads are probably the easiest ways to block yourself from success in the voice over trade.
Unfortunately, you can’t just rely on your amazing vocal talent – you need to be able to adapt to the requests of the clients and deliver types of works that may set you out of your comfort zone. The most requested read is a conversation piece so you need to be able to articulate in an authentic manner even if its just you and your microphone. Practice reading books, recipes, newspaper articles and whatever else you can out loud to be able to master your performance. You need to imagine you’re in front of an audience or better yet, practice your readings in front of audiences to gain the confidence and authenticity of a masterful voice over.
The same applies for character work. You need to be able to understand and practice your role, and become one with the character the same way an actor does. But this doesn’t mean imitate that which you already know – but work on adding your own spin to things.
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FAQ: Recording A Voice-Over
How do you record professional voice over at home?
Before recording your voice over, you should familiarize yourself with the script and the video. Also, practice reading the script aloud so that you do not make any mistakes while speaking. You can also try different tones and pitch for different voices. Then, you should adjust the volume of the recording to get the best quality of the audio. If you do not have a professional studio at home, there are plenty of ways to record your voice over at home.
What equipment do I need to record vocals?
When recording vocals, it’s best to use a condenser microphone, which will pick up all the treble detail in your voice. There are different types of condenser microphones. The most popular one is the Shure SM58, which has a large diaphragm and will capture the most details. You can also get a dynamic mic that will pick up all the vocals.