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Old September 24th, 2005, 11:35 PM   #16
 
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LOL...wanting to sound like Ty's stuff sounds requires a few things.
-Years of experience
-Great gear
-Practice, practice, practice
-Voice coaching can't hurt. Harlan Hogan has a GREAT DVD out on doing great V/O work, as one resource.

Next to the voice, mic is critically important, and the room only slightly less so. Knowing EQ, compression in post are equally important. There are scads of resources out there, both paid for and free. Jeffrey Fisher has an awesome book out on audio post for V/O work, and there are others as well.
3:1 is a good point for much vocal work, depending on the mic, preamp setup, and talent.
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Old September 24th, 2005, 11:53 PM   #17
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Glenn,

Sorry, but you seem to be more concerned with fixing the audio in post rather than actually recording excellent audio in the first place.

Yes, your desk is giving you the echo. Sorry if I didn't made it clear during my previous post, but the foam is suggested to absorb the reverberation/echo you are getting off your desk.

Your "closer" recordings sound fine on my computer but you may want to get the highest quality sound you can for any and all venues you planning for your video.

Regarding your previous question regarding whether the non-parallel walls and the foam make "that much difference"?, the answer is yes since professional recording studios pay thousands of dollars to build their booths this way.

Steph
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Old September 25th, 2005, 08:56 AM   #18
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Thanks and a hat tip to Doug.

I record voice and music in my space, so the acoustic treatment is very important. I do V/O and teach both union and non-union talent how to become narrators. My most recent student is Molly Moores. www.mollymoores.com.

I use really good mics, preamps and A/D converters in a 25' x 35' room that's extremely quiet. I bought the house because of the space. it's so quiet your ear drums do funny things. That's not because of the sound treatment. Acoustic panels have very little to do with how quiet a room is. They do, however, have everything to do with what happens to the sound originated inside the room.

I have recorded in big rooms with little more than some fabric covered panels of Corning 703 on the walls and the sound was excellent. I use a combination of foam, and diffusion to create a controlled environment.
I have desks and other hard surfaces, but use them to breakup the sound.

I have a wall unit filled (40 feet) of albums across one end wall. It makes an exccellent diffuser. The result is that the recordings (people say) sound "right there." Not a lot of room sound.

I also tune or design spaces for other people. I can pretty much hear what the problems are in a room by being in it, talking and making a few impulse noises.

Because voiceover work is normally close miced, acoustic problems are mimimized. You can do a lot of good work with an RE20 or SM7. Condenser mics with cardioid patterns require more attention because they hear the acoustic anomalies of the room much more; partly because their HF response is higher than that of dynamic mics.

I wrote a book called "Advanced Audio Production Techniques" about how to put a studio together back in 1991. Fortunately, it was very well received (spent the first year on MIX magazines best seller's list) and made a lot of money for Focal Press. I got small yearly commissions. Last year I got the rights back and (in my spare time) have started to rewrite it. There are still some copies of it flotating around. I didn't cover acoustics in the book, but plan to in the rewrite.

Good voiceovers are the result of attention to the art and craft of preformance, acoustical environment and equipment (and knowing how to get the most from it) and a good script. You can't just run out and buy some stuff and get the sound. That you are able to hear the difference is very good. The many who can't, make some pretty nasty recordings.

Hope this helps.

Ty Ford
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Old September 25th, 2005, 09:48 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ty Ford
...That you are able to hear the difference is very good. The many who can't, make some pretty nasty recordings.
HEAR HEAR!! Thats the *best* thing I've heard in a while...
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Old September 25th, 2005, 11:17 AM   #20
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You guys have been really helpful - thanks a lot :).

As far as getting a better place for the microphone,

I'm not sure how feasable it would be to build a giant space for the microphone - my desk and the area around it is very limited at the moment. I'm going to be building a giant new desk for the entire room, but I'll be sharing it with a coworker (so I only get half the room), and there is going to be a lot of equipment in this room.

Do you think it'd be possible to build a little 8 inch box for the microphone to sit in? I would be out in the open, of course, but the microphone would be insulated on all sides except for the front. I'm happy with Audacity's noise removal tool, so I don't think a faint background fan or two will really interefere with it, since it seems they can be taken out very easily.

If that won't work, downstairs I have a walk-in closet. It's probably 10 feet by 14 feet, carpeted, drywall ceiling, and hanging clothes covering one entire side. I'm recording onto a laptop, which is great because it's portable. Do you think I could take it down into my closet and get a better result? Trying it is probably the only way to really know, I suppose.
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Old September 25th, 2005, 11:27 AM   #21
 
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8 inch? Not a prayer of being valid. Might as well put the mic in a Tupperware bowl.
Watch the vid I linked to above, you'll see the smallest size you can get away with.
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Old September 25th, 2005, 01:05 PM   #22
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If computer noise is the issue, figure out what space you can put the CPU in (like in another room or closet) and cable to your keyboard and monitor/mouse.

Regards,

Ty Ford
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Old September 25th, 2005, 01:39 PM   #23
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Douglas,

The link you sent me to (Preview 3) (http://www.vasst.com/content/product...s-voicebox.wmv) returns a 404 not found. :(
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Old September 25th, 2005, 01:43 PM   #24
 
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Originally Posted by Allen Ellis
Douglas,

The link you sent me to (Preview 3) (http://www.vasst.com/content/product...s-voicebox.wmv) returns a 404 not found. :(

Hmm....link on page working from here.
Direct link:
http://www.vasst.com/files/product/k...s-voicebox.wmv
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Old September 25th, 2005, 02:29 PM   #25
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Thanks, that one worked. :)

It's a shame that the audio is so compressed - it's a lot harder to hear the difference.

So what size were those panels? 18 inches?

Thanks. :)
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Old September 25th, 2005, 02:45 PM   #26
 
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20 x 20.
You can hear a difference clearly (or at least I can) but you're right, the quality of the difference is compromised greatly in the compression of the file.
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Old September 25th, 2005, 04:00 PM   #27
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Alright, here's what I did.

I suddenly realized I have a lot of boxes. And a lot of sweaters. So I decided to get resourceful and build myself a soft box for $0. I found a 17" box, folded and laid a blanket across the bottom, placed a couple of sweaters on each side, and had another light sweater to pull over my head when I talk into it.

Picture: http://allenellis.com/temp/audio/soft%20box.jpg

Sound clip: http://www.allenellis.com/temp/audio/soft%20box.wav

I feel like there's still something lacking, or like there's too much bass somehow. Am I just being over critical of it? Anything else I could do to improve it?

Thanks. :)
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Old September 26th, 2005, 12:09 AM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Allen Ellis
Alright, here's what I did.

I suddenly realized I have a lot of boxes. And a lot of sweaters. So I decided to get resourceful and build myself a soft box for $0. I found a 17" box, folded and laid a blanket across the bottom, placed a couple of sweaters on each side, and had another light sweater to pull over my head when I talk into it.

Picture: http://allenellis.com/temp/audio/soft%20box.jpg

Sound clip: http://www.allenellis.com/temp/audio/soft%20box.wav

I feel like there's still something lacking, or like there's too much bass somehow. Am I just being over critical of it? Anything else I could do to improve it?

Thanks. :)
Allen,

Are those pure cotton or polyester sweaters? Might make a difference as different fibers have different audio qualities. Just kidding dude.....

Very resourceful man! It does sound better than your original post. I think you're right about the bassy sound. I hesitate to suggest that you may now be too close to the mic given the absorption qualities of your makeshift sound booth. The audio geniuses here will help, I have no doubt.
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Old September 26th, 2005, 12:51 AM   #29
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If you decide to move beyond the sweater-box, DSE has some instructions in an article titled "Voice Over Box" found below:

http://www.vasst.com/article.aspx?id...d5a8cb2&type=1
also found here http://www.indigipix.com/voicebox.htm

And this online book is a great resource for showing the merits of Owens Corning 703 or 705 which Jay Rose also recommends in his book titled Audio Postproduction for Digital Video:

http://www.ethanwiner.com/acoustics.html
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Old September 28th, 2005, 03:01 AM   #30
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Allen,

If you were making a jab with your photo of an over-stuffed sweater box and a "game show" voice-over you obviously GOT ME. I woke up early yesterday with a acuity which is exceptionally unusual for me at that hour, that perhaps your last post was a JOKE. If it was, I commend your creativity. A little bit evil perhaps, but very clever none the less.

If not, you've got way too many sweaters in there which will absorb all the "sweetness"; i.e. the highs and lows that make a voice seem rich and full. It's a matter of balance as some more informed folks have already posted.

Much good luck with your project and a friendly kick in the ass if appropriate.

Steph
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