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 Recording Set-ups for Voice Acting

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Mr. K
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PostSubject: Recording Set-ups for Voice Acting   Tue Jan 15, 2013 7:49 pm

Hi Everybody;

I have done some Voice Acting (VAing) for Game Mod projects, and a few other non-game projects. When I started, I rally had no idea of where to begin. So let me tell you my VAing story...

Well there I was, at 30,000 feet, with no oil pressure, and out of ammo, I had taken an incendiary round through my parachute seat-pack...
Hold on that's the wrong channel.

OK, I wanted to give VAing a try, and there was a Mod project I wanted to record for. I had an old Mic that was just a stick mic for an old computer that I had a long time before. There was some info posted about VAing in the Forum, but it was just a hint of what I needed to know. I looked at Windows Recorder, and decided it was too confusing, and somebody mentioned Audacity, I went to their web-site, and read about it, and since it was free, I downloaded it. Well I had to read all the Help Files and try things to get an idea of how to record my voice. So I jumped in and recorded the few lines requested, and after more reading, and struggle, I managed to record the lines. I had to Save the Sound Files, and more rereading later, I exported them to a folder. Of course, I had to find a way to give the files to the Modder. I think I added them as attachments in an email, not very convenient, and I had to figure out how to up-load to a File Sharing Service, and make Links to the Zipped Folder. All of that was tricky and confusing to figure out how any of this was done.

After all that the Modder told me my recordings where not any good, and that I needed to work on my Acting and my mic was no good. Well that was helpful, well it made me realize that for me to get my voice into a Mod, I was going to have to figure it all out on my own. I started by asking some of the other Fourm Members that had done some VAing to help me. I got some good info and some things that could help me make a better recording, but being who I was, I just had to get into a Mod, so I went on-line and started hunting for a lot more info. And me being out of money most of the time, I wanted Free info before I spent any money on any new Mic or other equipment.

I eventually got there, and I am not much of an Actor, but I have learned some of the things that a VA needs to know to get good recordings.

I will pass on the things I have learned here, and this is the place for you to ask me questions, and maybe post some recordings for practice, or for fun.

Sue and Nakia are my 2 best Voice Students, and they have become usable VAs and are now in a few Mods. Nakia, Sue, or I, are not the best VAs I ever heard, or did Mods with, but they actually wanted my help and they found me helpful. Don't get me wrong, I am no Voice coach, I know one or two, but I am no kind of Voice expert or any kind of Sound Engineer, but I manage some how to get recordings that sometimes can be used for Mods.

More to come...

Mr. K
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Mr. K
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PostSubject: Re: Recording Set-ups for Voice Acting   Tue Jan 15, 2013 8:59 pm

Hi All Voice Actors;

The 1st thing you need is a mic, and something to digitally record with.

Don't go out and buy anything! Not yet anyway. You may not need anything more than what you already have.

You already have the recorder, your computer, and a smart phone will record, but that will require some work on your part to get a file that you can do anything useful with.

So your 1st mic... Where do we find a usable mic, that we can learn how to record with? Look around, you may have a Gamers Headset hanging around your neck now. The mic on any kind of headset will work to start with, and some of them will be all you ever need. You may have a PC mic that is used for talking on Skipe, or other Voice Chat kind of thing. In other words, any kind of mic that you can connect to your computer will do for now.

Go ahead, I will wait..., tap, tap, tap....

OK, plug it into your Sound Card on the back of your PC, that is the best place, but if your PC doesn't have a sound card, no problem, you don't need one. I recorded a lot of lines on a PC without one. The motherboard will have a chip-set that has sound stuff you can use, and the plug for that is also on the back. You can use a mic-in plug on the front, but I think there are less connectors and places to have connection problems on the main sound connections. There will be at least 3 plugs and maybe as many as six. look closely and you can see small marks that tell you what each plug is for. Plug the mic into the MIC plug, or the Line-In plug.

OK, plug it in, what? you say it is too big, OK if you have a mic that is not designed for a computer or some other electronic device, and it has the large kind of plug (1/4 inch), you are in luck, that may be a good mic. But you will have to buy a small plug converter (1/4 inch to 3.5 mm), to get it to fit, you can get one at any music shop that sales electric guitars or any kind of sound or music equipment, cheep, and you may need one for your 2nd mic, if you decide to get a better mic.

OK, all plugged in, and powered up?

Hold on, your not ready yet, you need a way to get the sound to work.

You need a Sound Editor, lots of them out there. Just Google for them. But I like Audacity and I know how to use it, other people here like Reaper, but it is what ever you like and what works for you. If you get Audacity I can help with explaining it better than any of the others, and it is completely Free. If you have one already that you know how to use, Great. that will work too.

Link to Audacity:
http://audacity.sourceforge.net/download/

Link to Reaper:
http://www.reaper.fm/

A Link to Goldwave: Thanks to Sue.
http://www.goldwave.com/

OK, take a look at any of these Sound Editors, or something else, and I will talk more about them later.

Mr. K


Last edited by Mr. K on Thu Jan 17, 2013 9:31 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : new link)
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Sue77
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PostSubject: Re: Recording Set-ups for Voice Acting   Tue Jan 15, 2013 9:15 pm

Hi Mr K,

The other sound editor is Goldwave which I find very easy to use. I'll find the link and post it

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Mr. K
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PostSubject: Re: Recording Set-ups for Voice Acting   Thu Jan 17, 2013 9:27 pm

Thanks Sue;

Lots of Modders use Goldwave, and it has a lot of features that are handy for Mod VAing work for a Modder.

Here is the Link to Goldwave:
http://www.goldwave.com/

Some VAs have a Sound Editor for some other reason, like for a school project, or they got one with some piece of Computer equipment. If you have one that you are already comfortable with that is the one to use.

Just pick any of these, and learn to use the one you pick.

Mr. K
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Nakia the Rogue
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PostSubject: Re: Recording Set-ups for Voice Acting   Wed Jan 23, 2013 6:26 am

January 21, 2013: Audacity 2.0.3 Released
Download Link: Audacity V 2.03 Download
Here is a link to the Reference Notes for V 2.03:
2.03 reference notes

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