Videomaker – Learn video production and editing, camera reviews › Forums › Technique › Sound › Voiceover Booth question
August 23, 2011 at 3:07 PM #41903
Hello again everyone,
I would like to turn one of the closets in my theater/editing room into a voiceover
booth. I get way too much distortion trying to do voiceovers in the room
itself. I was thinking of shrinking the closet down, angling the ceiling and
lining the entire room with packing blankets. I have also purchased the 32
square foot foam kit on Amazon (the $59 one) and was thinking of using that to
make bass traps for the corners as well as pattern it on the door and walls. It’s
not enough to cover the room but I’m hoping it will deaden the room. Does this
sound like a good plan, do I need a special kind of glass to make the viewing
window in the door. Any tips would be great. Thanks
August 23, 2011 at 5:08 PM #177126pseudosafariMember
It’s a great start and should improve the overall sound. I’d skip the door unless you have a need to see the outside though, or make it look really professional. I do my voice stuff with just the blankets and it goes a long way. It’s not perfect, but it’s a lot better than an open room (no traffic noise, no air conditioner hum, for example). Plus I don’t need a glass door since it’s just me.
But when you say distortion, what is causing that? Echoes? Distortion is a word that (to me) means recording issues more than ambient sound.Just wondering. Just make sure there’s not some other issue.
But overall i say go for it.
August 23, 2011 at 5:23 PM #177127composite1Member
If you’re tight on space, it’s not tough to make a ‘Voiceover Booth’ using PVC pipes and blankets or foam. You can buy kits that have everything already, but if you’re on a small budget building your own will save cash. Also, when not in use, you can break it down and store it in that closet!
August 23, 2011 at 5:42 PM #177128
The distortion I speak of is from echo and bass build up. Theres nothing in this room but a theater screen and three recliners (lots of open space). I was thinking of installing a window (trimmed out of course) so I can close myself off from the room but still see the screen and operate my computer while inside. Thanks you the link compositer1. I will definitely check that out. I may film the construction and post the vid to see what you all think.
November 9, 2011 at 9:03 AM #177129simonvtoParticipant
Joshua if you’re still working on this, maybe you could post a short recording demonstrating the distortion. If you record a short, dry narration, we should be able to hear whether it’s (inside-the-room) echo, outside noise or faulty equipment which is causing the problem [or a combination of the above].
November 11, 2011 at 2:18 PM #177130
I’d be happy to. Any tips on how I post audio clips? I already know I’m going to need a new mic. Kind of stepped on mine while brining the new door for the sound booth in :/. Haven’t put the booth together yet, been to busy but I am going to film the construction of it and post the link.
November 16, 2011 at 11:44 PM #177131simonvtoParticipant
In the absence of an FTP, use a file-transfer service such as mailbigfile.com. There’s a ‘try for free’ option at http://free.mailbigfile.com. The URL is only temporary and limited to 20 downloads but it’s free…. Just post the URL here. A sample need need be 20 seconds or so of dry speech.
Will follow your booth project with interest.
November 18, 2011 at 4:40 PM #177132
November 19, 2011 at 7:06 PM #177133
Honestly for what you are doing, you may be going overboard.. the only reason I know is because that exactly what I’d do 🙂
I don’t have great speakers on this computer and I’m not in my recording studio (geared for Audio, though I do my video work there as well), but what I’m hearing in your file can easily be fixed.
1) I can’t recommend the Rode NT1A microphone enough, it’s got the lowest self noise in it’s price point and is very affordable. That will remove any of the ‘distortion’ caused by the mic itself. Great for pro level VO work at an affordable rate.
2) How are you getting the audio into the computer? Do you have a good internal soundcard, or are you using an external. Whatever you use to ‘power’ the mic will make a huge difference. You can get an affordable preamp for about $200 to do what you are looking for. Let us know your budget and we can suggest some. Using a decent pre will probably remove another huge amount of that ‘distortion’.
3) Adobe Audition has some great noise reduction plugins, but if not
them, I bet there’s a ton of free ones out there.
4) Sounds like you’re moved on building your booth, that’s great, not sure it’s needed in your application, could have probably done what you need with 3 mic stands and a few audimute blankets, but still cool you’ll have it. For any windows, you can use whatever you want, but it’s best to have them angled a bit if you can so soundwaves don’t bounce straight back to the mic, though, there are ways around this if you’ve done that already.
5) Mic position is a huge component, and you may be versed in this, but you’ll want to play with that. I’ve found that by having a good quiet condenser mic and booth, you can push the mic a tad further away that you would normally (but not too much so you get the room sound) and then roll off the lows below, say 150 hz, mostly mud down there anyway. From there some light compression, maybe some eq in the mids and you’re there!
Hope that’s helpful in some way.. would love to see photos! Here’s a link to when I built my recording studio in my basement! Good luck!
November 19, 2011 at 9:46 PM #177134
Shaun, Thanks for the info. Since I already have the material to do the booth I am going to go ahead and build it. I’ll for sure take a lot of pics and film it so as to share once it’s complete. Saddly to say, the mic I recorded that sound bite on was a USB mic. I’ve exhausted most of my equipment budget on Video equipment and software. But as more money comes in I will be up grading the VO part of things. I change my voice up a lot and want some good equipment and the space setup to record some demo’s. Any leads and tips on good but affordable equipment to help me get that done would be much appreciated. Oh and I have adobe sound booth as far as software goes. I’ll definitely check out that mic you suggested.
November 19, 2011 at 9:49 PM #177135
Just checked out the link. Very nice Booth! Pretty sure mine won’t be that nice but as long as it works right?
November 20, 2011 at 1:27 AM #177136
Thanks, yea It’s key for my set up as I do hour long sessions of spoken word and need absolute quiet.
As for vocal gear stuff. My theory (now after buying cheap for a few years) is, now, to buy once. That NT1A will be a great mic for your needs, or if you want a more broadcast sound, you can get the SM7B from Shure, it’s not a condenser, but its a great great mic for VO, you DO need a strong preamp to push it though as it requires quite a bit of gain… and actually come to think of it, if you’re using it primarily for VO, I’d get that one.. if you were doing other recording, like music, etc.. then I’d go for the NT1A, but just VO, the SM7B is great.
As for a preamp, well, your choices are very wide. Here are two that I’d recommend when you’re ready:
Presounus Tube Pre – super clean and clear pres, with the ability to add some ‘color/warmth’ to a voice if need be and super easy to use
Studio Project VTB1 – solid state means, very very clean pre, what you put in means what you get out, again with the option to dial in some character
Stay away from ART and Behringer… and at the risk of sounding like an audio snob… toss your usb mic 🙂
Can’t wait to see your vid of your booth.. def. save up a few hundred for the SM7B and a Preamp like one of the ones above and you’ll be psyched… add the noise reduction stuff and your booth… and you’re golden.
This stuff is too much fun 🙂 Good luck!
November 29, 2011 at 10:34 PM #177137
To give a +1 to the above poster on the choice of mics. The Rode NT1A is a good condensor mic for the price. It does ofcourse require phantom power to run it. The Shure sm7B is a very handy dynamic mic. It does need a good preamp with lots of gain to drive it though. I wouldn’t skimp on the quality of a mic preamp either as this does makea big difference.
Treatment of the room/booth is a good start. It will make a big difference if you have a good mic-in a good room-into a good preamp-interface. Also you need good monitor speakers to really hear clearly what is going on. Skimping on any of these things will compromise the results.
November 29, 2011 at 11:44 PM #177138
I use bose head phones to listen to my play back. Is that a good way of checking it?
November 30, 2011 at 12:07 AM #177139
Headphones are good only to a point. Monitoring via good headphones while you are doing the voice over is fine. Be aware though that consumer hi-fi grade headphones are designed to “flatter” the listener rather than give a true picture of the recording. Studio heaphones are designed to be flat, true and give you exactly what is there and so not disguising any flaws.
You still ultimately need some decent monitor speakers to listen to all your audio. Computer speakers, hi-fi speakers don’t give an accurate representation. Theycan miss things that show up later in the final product that is immediately evident to anyone who is listening on high quality speakers.
November 30, 2011 at 12:09 AM #177140
What’s with the A’s showing up in my post?
November 30, 2011 at 1:53 AM #177141
I see, thanks for the info. The only time I’ve ever seen those A’s is when I paste text into the reply box.
April 7, 2012 at 3:32 PM #177142
Tony those A’s happen in your posts if you go in and edit your post too.
April 7, 2012 at 8:16 PM #177143EarlCMember
I don’t HAVE any room to set up a sound booth. So, I throw a blanket over my head, grab my flashlight and script, record to my Zoom, transfer to my computer, use SoundTrack Pro to “normalize” and adjust, remove breaths and adjust general noise levels between narrative and it’s a go. A relatively inexpensive way, and without much wasted time, to accomplish voice over and narrative projects.
April 10, 2012 at 10:33 PM #177144
A blanket over the head and a Zoom? I’ve gota better idea. Why not stay in bed, get under the covers and usea dictaphone and record voice overs that way?
OK, Seriously, to get professional sounding voice over results, you don’t need an isolation booth, but you do need a good microphone and a room that doesn’t have ugly early reflections. Even just hanging duvets round you as a cheapie answer is better thanusing an untreated room. Stand there and clap your hands. If you hear lots of loud echoes, then you will find it hard to get good recordings. Acoustic foam or rigid fibreglass is better, but duvets are at least going to absorb some of the higher echo frequencies that can cloud the sound and crispness ofa voice
April 13, 2012 at 1:07 AM #177145
Joshua, Being a dork with all this stuff I’m curious to see you photos.. how have things come along?
- You must be logged in to reply to this topic.