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Voice over for Audio book - advice ?

Discussion in 'Recording' started by mpower, Jun 4, 2003.

  1. mpower

    mpower Active Member

    Hi, I have a project I am doing as a favour for a friend he is recording his book to CD, and I have not had any experience with micing for this purpose. it should be a natural appealing sound that is not super compressed/close miced - that is I'm not after a typical in your face " radio " sound, just a clear natural clean and appealing recording. The Mic I have is a Rode Classic II, no chance of using anything else if that isn't any good! I have a TC Gold Channel, and also I am probably going to have a Metric Halo ULN2, which I will use as the mic pre and then "if" I use the Gold channel it will probably be after the track is recorded to Cubase where I can process it digitally afterwards. I want to do as little to this as possible really. Preferably I will use the Waves plugs I own. I was thinking about using 96k 32bit just for fun since it's only one track and my computer can manage that, of course there's no need but maybe it will just be easier to just do 24/48. anyway, particularly I'm looking for any advice concerning mic placment and any other advice about what happens next would be great.

    Thanks,
    Micky.
     
  2. RecorderMan

    RecorderMan Distinguished Member

    1. record 16bit 44.1 , that's all the resolution you need.
    2. one good placement is between chest and chin height...angling up to mouth....more "chest" (i.e. fatter sounding) than the typicall (and nasally favored) position-used for singing - of between lips and nose.
    3. Don't EQ on the way in..easier to match and less likely to mess it up.
    4. A little light analog compression on the way in is good but if you don't have a good analog compressor...then don't do it...do it digitally later.
    5. Make sure to record at least a couple of miutes of room tone before and after the recording. This captures the sound of the room as the mic is hearing it...and can/will be used to help with edits. If youm remove a word or syllable, etc or need to modify a pause you will need "space"...if you havr no "room tone" then it will go silent and be noticible.
    6. Have a script to follow. every time they retake a section cirle the first word and number it...going sequentialy through the script. If they retake a section a cuople of times give the number a a dash followed by another number signifying the order of takes.
    for example: if the artist starts to picks up on paragraph two (and this is the second place we mark) and she is doing her third read (and the sentence beings with "walking towards the lake...") we would circle "walking" and in the margin above/next/ect we would have writtin:2-1,2-2,2-3....of course this is probably just one such system but it's the one I was shoen on the few books I've recorded.
    Obvously you should be making the same marks in the computer as cues as well. When I did them they were to DAT (two...for safety)...with a DAW this whole gig should be effortless.

    Back to audio: Make sure you have headroom...leave at least 3-4db at the top (more if you don't have a compressor).
     
  3. David French

    David French Well-Known Member

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  4. tmix

    tmix Guest

    mpower,
    Just to reiterate a point that others have made, and I have also found to be important.You need to have the deadest/most nonreflective room to do voice over and readings. Having a small room sound added to your voice makes for a horrific head ache later, you just can't get rid of it. If the room acoustics are heard, every little difference in takes becomes much more noticable tone wise.
    If you are in a bed room or bigger room put up as much absorbtive blankets etc around you that you can.
     
  5. mpower

    mpower Active Member

    Thanks for all your good replies I really appreciate that.

    The guy is going to rent a room in a radio station that is used to record adverts/voice overs so it *should* be up to standard but I haven't seen it.

    I don't have a good external compressor so it will just go straight in, I do have a Gold Channel but it's compression is done after the conversion to digital, so I might as well get the first copy down onto the hard drive and mess with it later since it makes no difference.

    As another question what would be a normal rate of charge for a service like this, I'm supplying all the gear plus my time I'm very experienced but not qualified.
     
  6. RecorderMan

    RecorderMan Distinguished Member

    ....seems like you should be able to get a compressor at the radio station...
     
  7. mpower

    mpower Active Member

    Probably, but I don't think I will need it. There is plenty of headroom available. I prefer to compress later in software with Waves since I am not that experienced and this way I can modify changes rather than being stuck with something that isn't right. It's probably going to end up being 6 CD's worth of stuff.

    Micky.
     

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