Home Recording

  • Lee Blake

    Voice Over:English

    Hi all,

    I’ve been on Mandy a while now and am looking for some advice on a Home voice over set up.

    I’ve got a home office with a Mac, blue snowball mic and GarageBand but this isn’t really set up for professional recording at home. I think the main thing being the Mic and lack of soundproofing.

    Do you have any suggestions on any equipment or packages at a reasonable price that would enable me to produce quality recordings? Ideally I’d keep the Mac and GarageBand (unless there’s better software you can recommend) - so I’m thinking I’d just need a new Mic and some basic soundproofing....

    Cheers!

    Lee

    • 29th Jan 2020
    • 1047
    • 7
  • Ruth Urquhart

    Voice Over:Scottish

    Check out Gravy for the Brain. They have loads of advice about home studios.

    • 14th Oct 2019
    • 1
  • Angus Scott

    Voice Over:English

    Gravy for the Brain +1

    For equipment, I'd strongly recommend the Scarlett 2i2 studio package. It's well priced and good enough to do commercial work.

    • 16th Oct 2019
    • 2
  • Ian Seale

    Voice Over:English

    "Can be recorded from home studio"

    Translation: "We're too cheap to pay for a Studio and Engineer, and we'd rather spend our time with a back and forth with revisions"

    Don't get me wrong, I've recorded some fantastic work in my home studio working with foreign producers, or time critical projects, but nearly always 'Home Record' goes hand-in-hand with a p*ss poor fee.

    Home recording is great for demos, and the above, but I would not like to see it become the norm.

    An engineered, studio record with the producer and or client in the room live directing (and signing off) a VO will, and should always be, the best and preferred option of clients and artistes alike.

    I fear 'Home Recording' is one particualr aspect that is driving fees down.

    • 17th Dec 2019
    • 3
  • Ruth Urquhart

    Voice Over:Scottish

    I disagree, Ian. In fact as time has gone in it is considered essential for VOs to have a studio. I don’t call mine a ‘home’ studio because even tho it’s in my garden it’s a really high spec broadcast quality one. One of my first jobs in it was in the thousands and I do probably 99 percent of my work there. For the big ones I get remotely recorded via Skype or Source Connect. It may have been the case even 5 years ago that companies calling for a home studio wanted a ‘budget’ VO but you only have to look at some of the jobs on here that say ‘come to our studio in London, the recording will only take 2 hours and you’ll get £50 and a mars bar ( actually they don’t usually offer the Mars Bar) to see that the problem is not actually about home studios but about rip off companies.

    • 17th Dec 2019
    • 4
  • Jahmene Hastings

    Voice Over:English

    The problem is the nature of the gig economy!

    Anyhow... to answer Lee:

    Get a Rode NT1000 and an Apogee duet, for the price you cant go wrong with that combo

    And soundproofing is a MUST. But you can even use old duvets etc if you're on a tight budget.

    X

    • 17th Dec 2019
    • 5
  • Angus Scott

    Voice Over:English

    I'm afraid I, too, entirely agree with Ruth (and Jahmene) on this.

    If you want to get into VO and win any work, unless you're already a mainstream, professional actor/presenter represented by a good agent, you MUST have your own home studio.

    "Home recording is great for demos, and the above, but I would not like to see it become the norm."

    Sadly, it IS already the norm and has been for a few years now. This is not our fault, nor actually the fault of clients/producers. It is technology and the inevitable evolution of our industry to meeting the 21st century market. It's not us that's changed, it's the market.

    The market in any industry will always, without exception, take the path of least (ie cheapest) resistance. Technology is cheap. This technology now allows people on small budgets to produce VO's almost as good as studio-produced but for a fraction of the cost. I would argue most buyers of VO services now find the quality of home-produced VO sufficient to justify the significantly lower cost they come with.

    Yes, I wish the industry did only do studio-based work and at much better rates. But this is the 21st century now where every industry has undergone massive change thanks to the accessibility of technology.

    The one upside of this, is that although rates are falling, I would wager the volume of work has increased accordingly, as the explosive growth of online videos and other media has meant people want more VO's. How many small companies or even back-bedroom entrepreneurs could afford a studio-produced VO? The fact that there is an army of VO artists capable of producing cheap (yes, low rate) VOs means it has facilitated an entire new tier of the market to appear. High volume, low rates. Picture the pyramid - the peak remains for the premium, studio-based, high paying work. But the base has expanded massively - huge volumes of work at lower rates.

    I agree it's sad to see rates decline overall - but this is an inevitability that nothing can stop. Markets constantly evolve and in doing so, different opportunities arise. It's happened in virtually every other industry and now it's our turn.

    • 19th Dec 2019
    • 6
  • Eric Chancy

    Actor

    I've had solid success completely (and I mean COMPLETELY) foam-covering the inside of an old entertainment center and building an accompanying soundcage. USB AT2020 and Audacity to record.

    • 29th Jan 2020
    • 7