What Microphone Should I buy?

This is another very common question we get asked by anyone interested in getting into voice over work and it’s a valid one as sooner or later you’re going to need to make some recordings.

The good news is that for your first microphone (yes your first one) you don’t need to spend a lot of money to get a good result, which is great if you’re just starting out and need something to practise with or to gain experience.

Andy’s prepared this sample of 3 different microphones that come at very different price points. It’s imporant to note that each microphone has been recorded in the same studio by the same voice using the same sample of a script.

The Microphones are;
Sennheiser 416 – $1050
Blue Yeti Nano – $158
Rode NTG5 – $750

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If you have any questions after listening feel free to reach out and via the contact page or facebook.

Voice Over Coaching in Sept / Oct / Nov – COVID-19 Update

The Victorian Government has just revealed it’s COVID-19 roadmap to easing restrictions over the next few months, so what does this mean for Voice Over Coaching?

To be honest we’ve had to keep changing the answer to that question over the past 6 months but the new roadmap certainly makes it easier to plan the next steps.

We’re looking forward to getting back into the studio with you!

What you can do right now

If you’re in Melbourne, or anywhere in Australia we offer 1 hour Voice Over Coaching sessions via Skype for $88. These are suitable for both beginners and those with more experience and looking to improve.

We’re also running an online Zoom session on Voice Over Recording and Editing Basics – It’s just $22 and the next one is September 15 at 7pm.

What you can do from October 26

Getting to the 3rd step of the Victorian Government’s reopening roadmap is really imporant for us as it will mean we can then run 1 on 1 voice over choaching sessions in a studio AND we can get the Introduction to Voice Over Workshop back into the studio also (with special considerations around social distancing).

If you have any questions around what we do and how we can help you now, feel free to get in touch via the contact page, Facebook or call the number at the top right of the screen.

Recording & Editing Basics for Voice Over – Sept 15 Zoom Session

Audio Recording and Editing. These are now skills that many voice over artists need in today’s competative world of Voice Over.

Certainly if you are already or working towards being a self-recording voice over artist or even podcast creator it’s essential that you learn the basic skills in this area.
Actually over the past 6 months many voice over artists who had never previously been required to record or edit themselves have been forced into this situation becuase of COVID-19 restrictions that kept them out of traditional studios. Many have had to scramble quickly to set up their own home recording space and learn how to connect remotely to studios or record themselves to send to studios or clients.

You can learn qute a bit around this using YouTube tutorials but it’s harder to find these that are specific to just basic editing for voice over…or cover way too much and become confusing. Plus these are not interactive – you don’t get to ask questions and have them answered…or even demonstrated in real time.

This is why we’ve started a new Zoom workshop that covers the basics of recording and editing voice over.
We also look a sofware options, paid and free plus expections of what clients/studios expect and delivery methods.

Whether you are new to voice over or experiences and want to know where to start or are already on your voice over journey and want to pick up a few extra tips, this session is for you.

The next Zoom session is September 15 from 7pm and the cost is just $22.

Bookings at https://www.voicesoftomorrow.com.au/course-dates/

Recording & Editing Voice Over – New online workshop

What: Recording & Editing Voice Over workshop
When: September 1- 7-9pm
Cost: $22 (inc GST)

** Update – only 3 places available **

If you’re interested in Voice Over, then you’ll also need to wrap your head around audio editing. This hasn’t always been the case, but to choose an over-used phrase, it’s quickly becoming the ‘New Normal’.

While for many independant Voice Over artists the idea of self-recording and editing isn’t new, COVID-19 restrictions have meant that over the past 6 months many well established artists have had to set up a home studio for the first time and learn some new technical skills so they can continue to work.

The good news is that you don’t have to study to become a sound engineer to get your head (ears) around basic sound editing so to get you started I’ll be running 2-hour online workshops to cover the basics.

The focus will be on practical demonstrations of editing techniques, plus an overview of some of the editing platforms available to you…and some time for any questions you have.

You could learn some of this via Youtube and it can be a useful resource at times, however the difference with the session I’ll be running is that it will be live and interactive and focusing on audio editing for voice over using samples from Australian voices. We’ll stick to the key basics – just what you need to know plus you’ll get some homework at the end of the session!

The session is open to 10 participants via Zoom on September 1 from 7 to 9pm. Booking at https://www.voicesoftomorrow.com.au/course-dates/

New Workshop Format – Looking to October

Cecelia masked up (Yes it comes off for recording though)

We hope this finds you safe and well in this very challenging time for everyone.

The current situation with increased restrictions has forced us to once again postpone our next Introduction to Voice over workshop, and inspired us to come up with a new format for the workshop that will hopefully allow us to run it in October.

It can be difficult to imagine what things will be like 6 weeks from now so we’ve developed a new way of running a group workshop that is better suited to the ever-changing conditions, while still remaining true to what we believe any voice over workshop should deliver.

It’s likely that even when restrictions do ease, social distancing may be in place for some time. For us to do that, it will mean we can’t pack 10 people into a studio at one time.
Our solution is to break up the workshop into a mix of online and in-studio sessions.

Here’s what the new format looks like for the October Introduction to Voice Over Workshop group.
Online Session Via Zoom (all 10 participants) – September 12 (11am to 1pm)
In-Studio session 1 (5 participants) – October 17 (11am-4pm)
In-Studio session 2 (remaining 5 participants) October 18 (11am- 4pm)
Online 1 on 1 Session (30min Via Zoom or Skype) – At a time that suits each person following the studio session.

Naturally our ability to have even a group of 5 people gathered in a studio is still subject to whatever restrictions are in place, however we feel this is much more likely to happen.

If you’ve already signed up for the cancelled September session or October then you’ll see a seperate email around this. If you’d like to know more feel free to email or call any time.

Stay safe – Wear a mask!

Why we don’t teach Voice Over as a “Business”

If you’re on this website, chances are that you’re either considering or have recently started out in the world of Voice Overs. There are a lot of questions to be answered as you begin, however we feel that the “Business” end of it isn’t anywhere near the top of the list. I’ll explain why in a moment.

Last year we spotted a Voice Over Workshop (Not in Melbourne) which promised to show participants how they could “Build a sustainable voice over business from home”. We had some discussion around this and decided it was a lot like putting the cart before the horse.

Now to be honest, not everyone shares this opinion, as I’ve also seen a few people being quite critical of Voice Over courses / workshops / Coaches who don’t teach the business side of Voice Over. So why don’t we?

You can’t start a business until you know your craft
Learn the skills involved in Voice Over, practise and improve. You can pretty much apply this to most types of work but for example if you wanted to get into Plumbing, there’s also quite a journey of learning and experience you need to gain before you undertake any business activity.

Your goal may not be business driven
There are different reasons for wanting to learn about voice overs and not all of them are about wanting to learn a skill and make money from it. For example we had one person attend our voice over workshop because they often cast voice over artsts and wanted to get a better understandng of what’s involved for the artist. We’ve also had a few people who attened a workshop or a coaching session as it would help with their current job but weren’t looking to take it up as a side gig.
There are also those who just want to do it for fun. Look on YouTube for fan overdubs of Anime – Many of the people are just having fun, nothing serious. Nothing wrong with that.

There are better places to learn about running a business
If / when you want to get really serious about running your own business, that’s also a skill set that can be learned.
Head over to Open.edu.au and you’ll find plenty of short courses in business or look at Opencolleges.edu.au and get a nationally recognised qualification – Certificate IV in New Small Business. LinkedIn Learning is also a great tool for bite sized chunks of knowlege.
It’s also worth mentioning that the Victorian Government has plenty of business resources at https://www.business.vic.gov.au/.

Somebody else can take care of the business side of things
Myself and Cecelia are fortunate enough to have a Voice Over agent. They take care of recommending us to clients, marketing, taking bookings and collecting payments. There are plenty of amazing Voice Over actors out there who have no idea about the ‘business’ of voice over…and that’s ok becuase it’s not their job. Getting on the books of a great agent isn’t easy and for all the reasons above, it may not be your goal.

If you’re ready to focus on learning Voice Over skills and starting out by having some fun, book into an upcoming workshop or 1 on 1 coaching session.

Bookings Open for August 8 & 9 Introduction to Voice Over Workshop

It’s almost time to get back into the studio for our next Introdution to Voice Over Workshop.
We have started taking bookings for our next Introduction to Voice Over weekend workshop on August 8 & 9 and with limited nubmers have just 5 more places available.

If you’d like to know more about the workshop or have any ther questions about what we do, feel free to reach out any time via the contact form, the phone number at the top right of the screen or give the live chat box a go!

Getting Technical with Andy: Intel compact PC for recording Voice Overs

Intel NUC PC with 10th Generation core i3 Processor – Powerful and Quiet!

Ok, time to geek out a litte with some technical talk. I’ll start out with a reminder that the whole technical side of recording voices overs, that is conversations about what Microphone to buy, how to treat a room for recording and certainly how you’ll go about recording shouldn’t be the start of your voice over journey…but it’s going to be important when you’re ready.

Something that’s been very handy over the past few months of lockdown has been my home studio. I’m fortunate enough to have a dedicated space – in fact a whole standalone room, seperate from the main house ,when I can record voice overs and connect in live with studios and clients.

For me it’s been a journey of constant improvement, from painting over bright orange walls to treating those walls with acoutic tiles, adding in other soft furnishings and then the actual recording equipment.

Just a few years ago when i needed to record something in my own studio I had a portable Zoom H4N recorder which i could quickly plug my microphone into for recording. I’d then have to take the Zoom recorder back to my office in the main house, take out the SD card and intert it into my PC to access the recording for editing / sending.

Moving on from the Zoom recorder I bought a USB audio interface which resided in the studio and connected this to my Laptop when i needed to record, using Adobe Audition. The laptop was a Microsoft Surface Pro. It’s compact, light, powerful and quiet so it did the job very well.

More recently as I was using the studio even more for voice over recording I thought it would be great if I could just walk into the studio and everything would be there ready for me to record. No plugging things in and taking equipment in or out…just ready to record when i am.

This is where the tiny Intel NUC PC comes in.

Intel NUC PCs have been around for a while now but they’re not something you’ll generally find sitting in the computer section at Harvey Norman. In a nutshell the NUC PC is a palm sized computer with the power of a full size desktop AND they run very quiet.

How small? 4 inches x 4 inches (that’s about 10.1cm x 10.1cm) so it also takes up a very small space. Actually you can mount the NUC PC on the back of a computer monitor to effectively create an “all in one” PC.

I set up a new NUC mini PC in the studio a few weeks ago and it’s been a game changer for me. Walk in, turn the NUC on and I’m ready to start recording in less than a minute. I save the files directly to my OneDrive cloud storage and then either share this link immediately or access the recording for further production work in my editing space back in the house. Take a look.

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Up and running, ready to record a VO in 60 seconds.
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A closer look at how the NUC mini PC is connected to everything

So that’s how I’m currently setup for recording in my home studio.

If you’re interested in having a similar setup, the good news is that I have a 2nd NUC Mini PC that I’ve just built which is ready to go..and it’s for sale.

Here’s what’s included:

Intel NUC with 10th Generation Core i3 Processor
480GB SSD Hard Drive
Windows 10 Home
Ocenaudio software for recording

Cost: $750 inc GST and delivery.

What you need already have or buy:

A Monitor (Can be supplied for approx $150)
Keyboard and Mouse (Can be supplied for approx $50)
USB Audio Interface (Happy to recommend)
Microphone, headphones etc (Happy to recommend)

If you’re interested or would like to know more, drop a line by phone or use the contact form.

Cecelia & Andy talk Voice Over – Listen now

This week the Voice Over Coaches decided to catch up for a chat. Afterall, well haven’t been in the same room for a few months so a bit of a catchup conversation was in order.

Listen in as we talk about what Cecelia has been doing with Skype coaching and how 1 on 1 studio sessions have been going with Andy. We also discuss the ultimate question “Is my voice good enough?”

Listen below and enjoy!