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View Full Version : Best Program to do Record and Noise Cancellations for Voice Overs




SpaceJello
Jan 10, 2007, 03:28 AM
I am doing some voice overs on my mbp, i am considering Soundtrack or Audacity... does anyone know if those are good programs? Or should I look into Live or something else?

As well, what's a good way to do noise cancellations for these recordings?
Any help would be appreciated!!!!



zimv20
Jan 10, 2007, 04:11 AM
wouldn't it make more sense to get good recordings that don't need to be noise-processed later?

SpaceJello
Jan 10, 2007, 06:56 AM
wouldn't it make more sense to get good recordings that don't need to be noise-processed later?

Yes but you can't always get a room with no sound to record though. Or that you do have to pay a bit of money for one if you want true dead sound rooms.

zimv20
Jan 10, 2007, 12:28 PM
you're doing location VO? maybe it'd help if you described what exactly you want to do.

SpaceJello
Jan 10, 2007, 09:45 PM
Problem is that I couldn't get the person doing some voice over into a sound studio and do proper recordings (due to location/time etc). I am traveling to the person and recording the voice over on my laptop with an external mic. There is no problem with the mic, but rather I do get the room tone or buzz where ever that do interfere with the recordings. Just wondering if there is a way to eliminate or control the room tone.

zimv20
Jan 10, 2007, 10:04 PM
Just wondering if there is a way to eliminate or control the room tone.
yeah, it's all about room treatment and mic placement. if it's something like a radio VO, then you have more freedom to dampen high end. that's pretty easy, you just use blankets and stuff. and then close-mic for proximity effect.

but if it's going to be used for something else, like go with picture or with a song, then you have to treat all frequencies more evenly. that's a lot harder -- you need broadband absorption and have to watch out for reflections. if you can suspend a blanket, say, 5 feet above the subject's head, but allow for some reflection to get a sense of space (but not sound like he's in a tank or a bathtub or a bathroom, etc), then you can get good results.

but that's all quality of recording. your original question had to do with noise cancellation, and i don't know if it still does. what kind of noise are you looking to get rid of? self-noise? traffic noise? lip smacks and p's popping? regardless, it's always best solved at record-time.

SpaceJello
Jan 11, 2007, 01:34 PM
...
but that's all quality of recording. your original question had to do with noise cancellation, and i don't know if it still does. what kind of noise are you looking to get rid of? self-noise? traffic noise? lip smacks and p's popping? regardless, it's always best solved at record-time.

Wow thanks for the detailed suggestions!!

The setup is pretty simple with the person speaking directly towards the mic. I am aiming for the documentary vo narration style, very focused voice.

By noise, I noticed that the mic will always pickup that buzz or hum of the room. You know that hum when the mic picks up when no one is speaking? Just the room tone. I was wondering if there is a way to get rid of the room tone since I am not in recording in a sound studio that wouldn't harm too much of the original vo.

I know I should be thinking thinking of doing this in production as opposed in post production. :(

zimv20
Jan 11, 2007, 02:15 PM
I noticed that the mic will always pickup that buzz or hum of the room. You know that hum when the mic picks up when no one is speaking? Just the room tone.
i think i was being thrown off by your terms. room tone is different from hum or buzz, which indicate some kind of electronic fault.

it is possible to get good results, but you have to do some work. first kill anything that's making noise (traffic, fridge, furnace, phones, dimmers, et. al.) and see what you've got. room tone can be treated any number of ways, but it depends on what the mic's picking up.

if the room tone is excessive, then i'll ask if your gain settings are right and if the talent is loud enough. and about mic placement. if it sounds like it does when someone w/ a video camera uses the camera mic from 10 feet away, then you're doing something wrong.

SpaceJello
Jan 12, 2007, 01:51 PM
i think i was being thrown off by your terms. room tone is different from hum or buzz, which indicate some kind of electronic fault.

...

if the room tone is excessive, then i'll ask if your gain settings are right and if the talent is loud enough. and about mic placement. if it sounds like it does when someone w/ a video camera uses the camera mic from 10 feet away, then you're doing something wrong.


Oops! Sorry for the term confusion. I did turn off the fridge once and it got less noise. The person right now sounds just right in terms of distance in his voice. I have been just making sure the audio doesn't go into red in the levels.

I know how to set audio on a video camera but i am not sure how I can set the gain/level on the laptop when recording with a mic? Is there a way to set the "room tone" as the lowest level? I am currently using soundtrack pro to record audio (to bring into Final Cut), i am sure there must be a better program? Any suggestions? thankx

zimv20
Jan 12, 2007, 02:03 PM
I have been just making sure the audio doesn't go into red in the levels.
for digital recording, keep the levels in the middle third of the graph. if it gets to the 80% mark too much, your levels are too high. also make sure you're recording at 24 bits, not 16.

how I can set the gain/level on the laptop when recording with a mic?
so you're just using a mic straight into the audio input? if so, you're really going to have to work to get good signal, i don't think much of the quality of the mac's built in mic pre and a/d converters, at least not what i've heard recorded with them.

can't help you there, i record w/ standalone pre's and converters, making my gain settings outside of the mac.

SpaceJello
Jan 12, 2007, 04:24 PM
...

can't help you there, i record w/ standalone pre's and converters, making my gain settings outside of the mac.

I am using the Snowball USB mic from Bluemic (bluemic.com), there are settings but it doesn't help. I have access to other mics as well. I just plug them into the laptop's audio in jack. So i am not sure if there are anything I can do to set the levels/gain?

zimv20
Jan 12, 2007, 04:50 PM
I am using the Snowball USB mic from Bluemic (bluemic.com), there are settings but it doesn't help.
okay, that mic has the preamp and converters built in.

i've not used it, but from the b.l.u.e. page, i see there's a pad -- have you tried that? or maybe it came w/ its own software for setting the gain?

the gain setting in GB and other DAWs is too late -- that works on the signal after it's been converted. what you want is to properly gainstage your signal before conversion.

also make sure that thing's in cardioid mode, not omni.

SpaceJello
Jan 13, 2007, 04:51 PM
okay, that mic has the preamp and converters built in.

i've not used it, but from the b.l.u.e. page, i see there's a pad -- have you tried that? or maybe it came w/ its own software for setting the gain?

the gain setting in GB and other DAWs is too late -- that works on the signal after it's been converted. what you want is to properly gainstage your signal before conversion.

also make sure that thing's in cardioid mode, not omni.

Thanks for all the input, yes I have been using the cardioid mode. I double checked again with the manuel, and am trying with the pad. It's much better, I just think that a serious mishap I did was not pay attention to the laptop fan!!!! It's amazing how much is matter... Guess I would have to find a longer USB cord. :)

zimv20
Jan 14, 2007, 06:35 PM
not pay attention to the laptop fan!!!!
yep, gotta kill noise sources. those mics hear better than we do :-)

SpaceJello
Jan 15, 2007, 04:45 AM
many thanks!