Seal Me In My Voiceover Booth

Posted on November 24, 2011 by

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Remember this When outside noise puts you out of work?

Look, if you’ve been investigating “Sound Proof booths,” I’m sure you are aware that you could spend upwards of $5,000 to get the isolation we all desire. If you’re just starting out, that seems like an investment that could take years to recover.

Mostly, there is a desire to not miss an audition. However, the perception that time is of the essence, is misplaced. Especially at that price point! If you think you are in a rush to get an audition out before someone else does, is a faulty strategy. Yes , you need to be “timely,” but not sloppy. Voice 123 gives you an hour. Don’t click that hour until you know you’ve got the environment to do it.

If your home is way to loud when you need to record, take control. You can tell the kids to go play down the street, make sure no one uses the bathroom and make it known to all at home to respect your space. This is the beauty of a home studio. It is an opportunity to support everyone at home. They need to support you at the same time.

Your doing it at home because its cheap. Thats the beauty of it. True, you can’t totally keep the outside noise from coming in without major investment (And effort). But, you can create excellent audio with a few inexpensive, isolation techniques.

You can shut off the furnace or A/C for a couple of hours. I do it all the time and save money at the same time. Just remember to turn it back on! What’s more important? Do the laundry done at 1 pm or at 10 pm?

If its overwhelming and persistent , find a better place in your home thats easier to isolate. A closet, properly treated, is far less expensive (While perhaps inconvenient ) to isolate yourself. Ask anyone who’s tried it in a closet with a bulky wardrobe. It rocks! Or, use Auralex foam and create a 3 sided booth about 3 or 4 feet wide and deep. Cover the ceiling directly above your mic too. OR, use a big heavy quilt! The idea is to absorb the sound passing the mic and not bouncing back around the room. You know, that “talking in a tunnel” effect. Be resourceful!!

So in the end, you can spend $5,000 and spend time in the “Cone of Silence” feeling claustrophobic, and deal with the funky acoustics these booths, both manufactured and home made create, or you can patiently wait for your neighbor to stop cutting his grass.

Here’s what I recommend. Take your time in learning how to record. Learn the basics. Learn the acoustic signature of your studio space. Learn how to compensate for it physically, by moving things around or using software to filter out the noise AFTER you have recorded it. And Be Patient!

I offer one on one training on how to do all this in YOUR specific environment. Every room is different, every voice is different. There is no “one size fits all” solution.

Picture by Anders Printz