How Do You Record a Good Voice Over? The Complete Guide

how do you record a good voice over

In recent years, the demand for voice over work has skyrocketed. If you're looking to get in on an expanding market, this is a great place to start.

It's not just radio commercials or cartoons that are driving the uptick in voice acting services. We've invited personal assistants like Siri, Alexa, and others into our lives, giving rise to the need for more vocal talent.

Wondering how do you record a good voice over? We've got a guide that will help you create either an audition reel or professional voice work for your own project.


Know Your Audience

You might have a unique voice that lends itself to a certain genre. For example, a squeaky, childish voice might be great for kids' videos.

Before you hit record, try to figure out what your audience needs. If you're looking to hit a certain mark, it should guide how you create your voice over.

For example, if you're looking to break into the voice work business, your best bet would be to aim for a "girl/guy next door" sound. Businesses are looking for an accessible, regular-sounding voice.

Know your audience before you sit down in front of a microphone. That way you can deliver exactly the voice over work that potential clients are looking for.


Master the Right Delivery

Another thing you need to master before you start recording is your delivery. This is the hallmark of excellent voice over recording.

Here are a few things that make your voice over sound professional:

  • Tone: you want to sound natural and relaxed
  • Pacing: don't read your lines too fast or too slow
  • Pronunciation: read lines clearly so that listeners can understand every word
  • Clarity: your volume should be at a comfortable level

Practice reading your script a few times before you begin. If there's video that goes with it, try to get your timing right.


Setting Up Your Microphone

Now let's look at the type of equipment you'll need. Setting up your microphone the right way is one of the most important things a voice over artist can do.

Do you feel more comfortable recording while sitting or standing? Determine what kind of mic stand works best in your recording space.

Place your mic 8 to 12 inches away from your face. You should sound clear and present, not too distant or distorted.

Pop filters help you create a clean sound. Many voice over services use them in professional recordings. 

It's best if your microphone can plug directly into your computer. If yours doesn't, be sure it's compatible with your USB interface.


Getting Ready to Record

We mentioned the importance of pre-reading your script. Keep any notes nearby when you're ready to record and have it propped up on a music stand for easy access.

Your recording studio should be quiet and free from distractions. If you're not recording in a professional studio, there are ways to prep your space.

Test it out before you start your recording. Speak loudly or clap your hands to see if there's too much reverberation.

You can purchase sound-dampening materials to line the walls if there's too much echo. If push comes to shove, build an old-fashioned pillow fort with a thick duvet, and record your lines in there.

Have a good set of earphones to isolate the sound of your own voice. Keep a glass of water nearby so that your throat doesn't dry out.


Recording Your Voice Over

It's time to record! Open your voice recording software and run a few tests before you start your project.

On your software, you'll notice that if your voice gets too loud, you'll see the levels go into the red. Make sure you keep your voice within the appropriate range.

Do a few warm-ups and read-throughs to get ready to record. Adjust your posture, take a deep breath, and hit record.

If you make a mistake, make an audio note. This will help you later when you're editing your voice over.

You can record it all at once in one take or do it in pieces to edit together later. Figure out which works best for you.


Post-Production and Editing

You're finished recording, congrats! Your work doesn't end there, though.

There's still audio clean-up and editing to you. Import your audio file into an editing program and start making notes.

Listen all the way through the first time. Take a few notes on what you like and what you don't.

Next, listen all the way through again to see if there are any distortions, mumbling, gasping, or anything else that interrupts the flow. Be critical and make sure that you're completely satisfied.

Finally, start editing your project. Make cuts where you need to and add in moments of silence if it makes it seem more natural.

Pauses are important for listeners to grasp what you're saying. Remember, you know what your project is about but they don't.


Next Steps

Once you've got a voice over recording you're proud of, what next?

If your recording is part of a video project, you'll need to sync it together. Import it into your video editing software, create an audio track, and marry it to your video recording.

If you're looking to break into the world of voice-overs, you'll need to make it accessible. Add it to your website, social media, sizzle reel, and more.

Creating a professional product is a great accomplishment. Doing it the right way will make your projects shine and earn your recognition.


How do You Record a Good Voice Over? With Our Guide!

How do you record a good voice over? With this voice over guide, you now know which methods work best for any project at any budget.

Take your projects to the next level or break into the exciting world of voice over recording with these tips and tricks. You can create professional-quality recordings that snag you jobs or bring new life to your videos. Your voice overs could open up many new doors of opportunity with podcasts, radio, television, movies, audiobooks, and much more. 

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