I’ll get right into this one. Lots of students ask me about recording from home and while it helps to have a real sound-booth with top-of-the-line microphones and equipment, there are LOTS of cost effective ways to take an average room and get a almost-studio sound without breaking the bank. Here are my recommendations for the basic equipment you need to get recording from home:
[NOTE: I am NOT an expert. Engineers and sound designers like George Whittham and his like can tell you all about sound and sound absorption. They can design just the right space for you, long term. This article is meant only to help the novice get started with reasonable recording success while on a budget. Please don’t email me with your corrections and suggestions on how to better engineer a booth or set up. You’d loose me on paragraph one.]
Mics today come in several varieties. For the home voice actor there are lots of options out there. Let’s break down your choices and help you to refine your search for the right one:
In order to build a career as a voice actor, one must have the right tools. In the digital age, if you are not savvy about certain websites and services, then you are at a disadvantage. When I first began in this business about 10 years ago, the internet had just come into it's own in the VO world. Now, in 2014, the majority of this business is done on the internet - from submitting demos to auditioning to recording in session with producers in remote locations.
Here is a brief list of some of the important websites and resources you must have if you are serious about making it in this industry today.
[NOTE: this list is by no means exhaustive. It's just a starting place. Additionally, in the spirit of full disclosure, I am not affiliated with, nor do I benefit in any way from any of the businesses listed below for mentioning them in this blog.]
Like a phone book for VO, the VORG is an online directory of agents, casting directors, demo producers, training and more. From the main page you can choose L.A. or New York for the most up-to-date listings of VO resources in these major markets. This is a must have site for demo submission, current union rates, available classes and more. And best of all, it's free.
Dave & Dave inc. publishers of the VORG. Their business site with listings of their services including demo recording, audition submission, ISDN studios and more.
THE resource for online demos and agency house reels. This site is an industry standard for agencies and casting in VO. It is an open site to view, but only Talent Agencies can pull copy and submit auditions for talent.
Edge Studio on the east coast is a casting and production house that evolved into a major player in VO education on both coasts and throughout the country. In addition to classes and production services, Edge puts out a free weekly newsletter full of tips, insight and expertise from trainers and VO performers. But by far, my favorite service of Edge Studio is the free copy library. If you create a free online profile you can get access to this online practice script library featuring VO of all kinds. When I'm coaching a student in private session, I will often refer them to Edge so they can do their homework on real scripts for broadcast.
This is the Mick Wingert Website. The blog is by Mick unless otherwise specified. Mick's Bio can be found here.