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Old April 6th, 2011, 07:50 AM   #1
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Filter for voice over?

Good day everyone,

I'm editing together a short video (90 sec) for some friends, and there is a short voice over, that is being added to the beginning. Since I am not an audio professional, by any means, I was hoping someone could recommend a filter, for giving it that little extra something? We recorded with a quality mic, it as sound dead of a room as we could get, and I want to try to give it a little processing to boots it up, but I'm not sure where to start. I'm working in final cut pro, so I have sound booth, also have cubase le5.

Any suggestions would be helpful and very much appreciated.


Jeff
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Old April 6th, 2011, 10:58 AM   #2
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Re: Filter for voice over?

A bit of compression can fatten up the sound a bit but don't over do i t. There's really no substitute for talent with a good set of well-practiced pipes. To sound like Morgan Freeman it helps to BE Morgan Freeman.
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Old April 6th, 2011, 11:40 AM   #3
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Re: Filter for voice over?

Try the Testosterone plug-in, applied sparingly. Use too much, and you may burn out your woofers.
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Old April 6th, 2011, 11:54 AM   #4
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Re: Filter for voice over?

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Originally Posted by Steve House View Post
A bit of compression can fatten up the sound a bit but don't over do i t. There's really no substitute for talent with a good set of well-practiced pipes. To sound like Morgan Freeman it helps to BE Morgan Freeman.
I Just want to add a little something too it. But I agree about having the talent. I will add, Up until a year ago, I was a strip club DJ for 14 years, and gave developed one of those radio cheesy announcer voices. So if I can't get what they recorded to work and flow with the video I'm editing, I will rerecord the voice over myself.
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Old April 6th, 2011, 01:40 PM   #5
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Re: Filter for voice over?

A good trick is to double the track and compress the heck out of one of the tracks, then mix to taste. The compressed track (e.g. 10:1, -25dB) will sound full, but be lifeless. The original track will have live dynamics, but be thin. Together, you can have a bit of both. Adding very light compression (e.g. 2:1, -6dB) to the two mixed tracks can help maximize the effect and tame peaks.

Also, play with EQ. The band around 250 Hz is the fundamental. With a smooth curve, boost or cut that area to get the right amount of body. A somewhat sharp boost around 1.2k can help boost consonant sounds, but be careful not to add a resonant sound. A smooth boost or cut around 2.4 kHz helps add or reduce nasal sounds and character. A boost in the 5k to 15k area adds "air". Watch out for adding noise and sibilance.
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Old April 6th, 2011, 01:55 PM   #6
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Re: Filter for voice over?

On Greg's Testosterone plug-in, try the James Earl Jones, Peter Coyote or Morgan Freeman presets. Other pre-sets include, James Naughton and Wm B. Macy among others.
Then there's the 'Estrogen' VO Plug-in , currently only available for 'VST Widows'.
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Old April 6th, 2011, 07:16 PM   #7
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Re: Filter for voice over?

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try the James Earl Jones, Peter Coyote or Morgan Freeman presets.
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Old April 6th, 2011, 08:52 PM   #8
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Re: Filter for voice over?

If you do a lot of voice-overs you might wish to take a look at the TC-Electronics devices or, if you're on a Mac, Logic Pro 9 has a voice altering plug that is very effective.
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Old April 7th, 2011, 12:02 AM   #9
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Re: Filter for voice over?

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Originally Posted by Greg Miller View Post
Try the Testosterone plug-in, applied sparingly. Use too much, and you may burn out your woofers.
Where do I find this plug in? Ive tried a google search and have come up empty.
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Old April 7th, 2011, 12:09 AM   #10
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Re: Filter for voice over?

Some voice plugs use pitch shifting. Personally, I've gone for pitch shift for comical, over the top stuff, but I'd stay away from it for anything serious. It can deliver a "wow" reaction when you first hear yourself with a deeper voice, but it doesn't take much listening before you hear the flaws and it sounds fake.

That said, I haven't heard the TC-Electronics devices or the plug in Logic Pro 9. Maybe they rock. But don't let the initial "wow" fool you. Listen closely for naturalness - unless you are going for the comedic.
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Old April 7th, 2011, 12:56 AM   #11
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Re: Filter for voice over?

I'm really not trying to change his voice, I guess I was looking for ideas on how to enhance the dynamics of the voice over, make it sound radioish, like the old monster truck commercials, you know...."SUNDAY, SUNDAY SUNDAY, MONSTER MADNESS, and you get that sound with it. I'm not audio engineer, so I have no clue what effects filters to fiddle with, to give a little something to this clip, is it reverb, is it compression? I look at the audio filters in FCP, and Soundtrack pro, and was messing around in adobe Soundbooth too. I guess Im not getting the right filter and playing with the right settings anywhere. I recorded it flat, so that I could add a little room to it in post, I just dont know how...lol
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Old April 7th, 2011, 11:51 AM   #12
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Re: Filter for voice over?

For the movie trailer voice, compress and EQ but leave it dry. For the giant radio promo voice, compress, EQ, and be creative with reverb. The trick is to have a moderate amount of reverb at all times, but to add huge reverb and echo at the end of the line. That keeps the dialog clear and understandable (too much full-time echo and reverb would make things muddy and busy), but the huge reverb effect at the end makes it sound huge - like it's blasting at volume 11 in a huge stadium. :)
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Old April 7th, 2011, 01:50 PM   #13
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Re: Filter for voice over?

In the old days we used BBE Sound maximizer. The difference was like pulling a small pillow off the speakers.

What microphone did you use for your VO? You mentioned that you used a good one. For the "Sunday, Sunday Sunday" ones they probably recorded in a studio using a condenser microphone, which can cost upwards of $2500, not including the preamp.
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Old April 7th, 2011, 02:13 PM   #14
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Re: Filter for voice over?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeff Troiano View Post
I'm really not trying to change his voice, I guess I was looking for ideas on how to enhance the dynamics of the voice over, make it sound radioish, like the old monster truck commercials, you know...."SUNDAY, SUNDAY SUNDAY, MONSTER MADNESS, and you get that sound with it. I'm not audio engineer, so I have no clue what effects filters to fiddle with, to give a little something to this clip, is it reverb, is it compression? I look at the audio filters in FCP, and Soundtrack pro, and was messing around in adobe Soundbooth too. I guess Im not getting the right filter and playing with the right settings anywhere. I recorded it flat, so that I could add a little room to it in post, I just dont know how...lol
If the radio sound described above is what you seek, REVERB may be what you are looking for along with some low and mid-range EQ. But the TC Electronics devices, specifically, the TC-Helicon, will give you any odd type or deep voice you may have heard over the radio. It also does harmony, doubling, megaphone emulation, underwater emulation and more things that there is room to list. But it isn't cheap.
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