Recording Vocals Like a Pro: Nail Recording Techniques and Acoustics | Rob M. | Skillshare

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Recording Vocals Like a Pro: Nail Recording Techniques and Acoustics

teacher avatar Rob M., audio-visual engineer, musician and video creator.

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

    • 1.



    • 2.

      4 Key Considerations Part 1


    • 3.

      4 Key Considerations Part 2


    • 4.

      Room Acoustics Made Easy


    • 5.

      Early Reflections


    • 6.

      Microphones and Early Reflections


    • 7.

      The Ultimate Free Technique for Improving your Vocals & Voice Overs!


    • 8.

      WOW - Take a Listen!


    • 9.

      Behind The Scenes - Acoustic Treatment


    • 10.

      Exploit Mic Placement Part 1


    • 11.

      Exploit Mic Placement Part 2


    • 12.

      Mic Placement Examples


    • 13.

      Awesome Sound Isolation (Getting Rid of Background Noise)


    • 14.

      Use a Pop Filter


    • 15.

      This Is Why You Need a Pop Shield!


    • 16.

      Shock Mounts


    • 17.

      Recording Technique & Acoustics Summary


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About This Class

Get better at recording vocals and voice overs at home. Without spending a fortune!

It’s easy for anyone to start recording vocals at home with modern affordable equipment.

But there is a huge problem. Information is spread all over the internet and it’s hard to find good advice. There is a lack of awareness of the importance of recording technique.

When it comes to music, vocals are often the hardest thing to nail at home.  It’s hard to make vocals sit in the mix. Most of the time, you can hear that they were recorded in a small untreated room.

The internet is full of podcasts, videos and courses with awful sound quality. The voice recording is hard to understand and irritating to the ear. In some cases it’s simply unintelligible!

Improve your technique for recording vocals and vocie overs. It’s the easiest step to increasing the quality of your releases. Yet it is so often neglected!

Vocals sound like they were recorded in a completely different space and don’t gel with the music. Speech is often understandable but sounds distant, thin or odd. This has a proven negative effect on the perception of your work. To give that premium feel, you need high quality vocal and voice recordings.

Follow the simple steps outlined in this course. You will quickly and easily improve your music, podcasts, audiobooks, voice overs or videos. In fact, anything that includes vocals, spoken word or dialog can be improved without difficulty.

This will impress your current fans. Attract new customers. Increase sales, downloads or streams.

All you need is a microphone and a stand which can cost you as little as $40!


What’s Inside

You might be asking: what exactly are we going to cover in these lectures? And the answer is pretty much everything you need to know about recording technique and room treatment:

  • Mic Placement
  • Recording Techniques
  • Room Acoustics
  • Free Acoustic Treatment
  • Sound Isolation
  • Accessories
  • and more!

Meet Your Teacher

Teacher Profile Image

Rob M.

audio-visual engineer, musician and video creator.


Audio guy, video creator and online entrepreneur.

Teacher at Home Studio Center (the place where people go to get better at home recording). Instructor to over 4,329 students on Udemy. Writer at Tuts+ (Music & Audio) and contributor at Ultimate-Guitar.

Wanderluster and jack of all trades (master of some).

I've worked in a range of recording studios, live venues and film sets as both a musician and sound technician. I have also worked in numerous large venues as an audio-visual engineer and lighting designer.

I've worked with (and been taught by) boom operators and sound recordists that have worked on large budget feature films (such as Pirates of the Caribbean, Clash of the Titans, Layer Cake, Shaun of the Dead, World War Z) and popular TV shows (such as Ric... See full profile

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1. Welcome!: Hi there. Thanks for joining me. You've made the right decision. We've got a lot to cover, so I'm gonna get started straight away. We're gonna talk about recording technique, so we're going to discuss Mike for emplacement and I'm where to put them back in the room. We're also gonna go over cue sticks and how to create basic acoustic treatment with stuff lying around your home. And this is the key thing to get in. A good recording is if it sounds good in the first place, you don't have to do any editing or mixing or you have to be very little. And that's what we want to achieve on depending on where you put the mike in the room on where you put your music treatment, that's gonna have a big impact on the sound that you record on. Over the years, I've picked up the tips and secrets that the professionals use in the IEA's to get great results in any situation or environment with affordable equipment every time. This is courses for anyone, even if you've never called a voice before, or if you've been recording voice for years but need to take yourself to the next level. This course is for you. So let's get started 2. 4 Key Considerations Part 1: So now what? We need to learn about how you record on where you put the microphone in the room, on how far you have the microphone from your mouth. Mooney's various parameters that have an effect on how recruiting under key thing to remember. When it comes to recording technique, the all of the time is trial and error. This is something that a lot of people don't understand or unaware of even the most experienced engineers on even in experience, tension is move. Try different Mike placements. Andi, listen back. How they sound on their move it slightly. Listen back to our sounds a few inches. Move it back again. Listen to how it sounds. And this constant trial and error is what separates the good engineers from the bad ones. Because really, what it's all about is making it sound good at the source, Which is why I emphasize that in the first section, if you get it right at the source and you get it right when you're recording in the actual recording face, you really don't have to do any processing. Andi, when you due process it, it's only to make it sound better. You want to be doing is little fixing as possible. More about what I mean by that is a lot of people just for my Cup press record and say it sounds all right. We'll fix it in the mix or will fix it with editing a noise or evil. But that just doesn't work. You can get in alright, sound that way. But to get good sound, you put the time an investment into the recording phase and it saves you a lot of a lot of time down the line. When it comes to mixing and editing. When we're talking specifically about speech, it saves you time messing about with equalization and compression and most of all, noise remedial. That seems to be the biggest problem that people deal with when it comes to recording. Speech is just saying it worked. But in my cup pressure on record, suddenly you have an echo in the room, which you can't remove with processing, or you have lots of background noise because you didn't think about your environment or it just sounds bad because you didn't have a listen. It sounds order not not true or the mikes too far away etcetera. So once you've learned the techniques that we're gonna outline in this section, mess with them, the rules are there to be broken. I'm going to give you guidelines on tell you kind of ranges. I'm not going to say specifically position to Mike 7.5 inches from the mouth, two inches below on horizontal level, Looking to say anything like that. It just doesn't apply. And the same goes Teoh effect presets. A lot of effects compresses E keys have presets that you can just click voice on. Do you think it will fix it for you? That doesn't work. That's trial and error as well. We'll cover that Maurin the mixing phase, but just bear that in mind for out this. 3. 4 Key Considerations Part 2: Secondly, it really does depend on what sounds you want, the same way different microphones work they're not. There's no bad. There's no right or wrong. It just depends on what sound you want to achieve. And the same goes for recording technique and where you put the mike in a room on mic placement experiment and find the sound that you want. It's all subjective. There are bad sounds. If you can't understand what the speaker's saying, then it's a poor recording. But one my one person might prefer a warmer sounding take, and the other person might percent prefer bright. It is completely depends. It's purely subjective and probably the biggest parameter, or the biggest thing that we change when it comes to recording technique is mike Distance. And if you're gonna experiment with at least one thing, make sure it's this because the distance from the mike will have the largest effect on how your horning sounds. Don't just put it a few inches and think that would do experiment. We'll talk about this more later on. You'll say, Wanna eliminate external sounds? So if you live with other people, let them know that you're recording or even put a sign or just a note on the door telling people that's coming. She don't want someone's coming halfway for a good take on Marine your recording, make sure everything's a mute, your phones, your laptop. Anything else that can make a noise. Your watch alarms again you don't ever in a halfway through on. Sometimes you have to position the mic with noise into consideration. So if you have a noisy laptop with a noisy fan in it and you have a cardio and mark frame, point the microphone away from your laptop. The same goes for windows or doors. A lot of the sound from around you is gonna come in through the door, for example, say pointing the mike away from the door. Eliminate all sounds or as much as you can. 4. Room Acoustics Made Easy: it's a festival owns Talk to you about vermin key sticks on. This is a subject that a lot of people seem to neglect on, I think is because it's intimidating and it's a whole field of study. You could spend years studying acoustics, but you only really need a very basic understanding of how sound works in our situation. For recording voice in order to manipulate room acoustics to our advantage on did use basic stuff around the house to help our recordings sound better. And to do that you do need a very, very basic understanding. I'm gonna make it really simple and easy to follow, and by the end of this you'll understand exactly what the time acoustics means. So when we're talking about room acoustics, the time just replies toe the way that sound reacts with the environment around us. SE, as I mentioned Dahlia sound reflects off surfaces like a light beam would reflects off a mirror. And if we take this square room that you can see before you with a single passing inside it for this hypothetical example, we're going to assume that there's nothing else in the room of this person now, Miss Person makes a noise by speaking. Of course, that sound doesn't just emanate in front of them. It will come out of them at all. The angles from behind as well sound off, See, mostly comes from your mouth. But as we said, it comes from your chest as well, and it eliminate from you. And when it does and it reaches the walls, it'll bounce back, and some of that sound will bounce back towards your is directly some or microphone. If you're recording some, that will bounce to another war, depending on the angle. So let's have a quick look at how that work a very simplified example. So we have the sound emanating, bouncing. I'm bouncing again so you can see here. The sound coming directly from the speaker has come to this war as an example from the mouth, and it's probably gonna be the loudest area it hits the wall. If it's a reflective surface, such as a window or a flat wall, it will bounce straight back at the same angle to our is or the microphone. These waves, however, I thought, see balance again off this wall, assuming that it's not diffuse it, which is a term we shouldn't worry about now. But human. It's a flat wall. Basically, it will bounce proportionately into this world every time it will lose energy or them bounce back into the room again. You can see the hours getting smaller to represent the loss of energy. Mother time, this sound wave gets to us. It would have lost a lot of energy. But the direct reflections from the wall here on Dhere on Dhere on Dhere we're going to be the loudest. 5. Early Reflections: now, if we move towards a wound so that were closest the world rather than in the middle of the room, you can imagine the sound coming from our mouths Well, now bounced directly off the wall and very quickly back inside is and this is gonna be quite loud because it hasn't The sound hasn't had to travel very far, so it wouldn't have lost a lot of energy. Therefore, it was still retain a lot of volume, so that's gonna be quite allowed reflection. And that's exactly what is We call these early reflections. And when we took spot reverb and the way that a clap bounces around the room again, that didn't really work because I've got treatment up. So it's quite dead in this room, but normally that clap would bounce around the room. It's gonna bounce very quickly off this wall and back at you with a lot of volume, and this is a reflection. And in river we call this early reflections because this is one of the first reflections that you're here. You have ones coming off other angles. They're going to take longer to travel to the wall and bounce back to you, Or is this one is gonna be very quick. So this is called an early reflection 6. Microphones and Early Reflections: So now imagine those early reflections bouncing straight and your ear quickly with a lot of volume being captured by Mike referring directly in front of you. This is a very common position that lot of people use. They'll have a desk along one wall on the microphone, resting on the desk or supported somehow in front of them very close to the wall because it's red that you'd have a desk in the middle of the room. You can imagine those reflections again to that wall and then straight back into the microphone with a lot of volume on very quickly. And this is what we call again an early reflection. And this is going to cause problems because it's like hearing the sound twice or hearing the word twice with a very slight delay on the second time. Kind of like it. You can imagine a word bouncing it. Or if you made that noise near well, obviously the 2nd 1 would be is loud volume and it probably quicker than that. But if you imagine it's kind of replicating the sound but a few milliseconds behind and this is an echo or Flattery Co. And this is what causes a lot of problems and reduces intelligibility quite a lot. And this is before we even get to the reverb tail, the back of the room example or back intellectual example where the river tell messes up. The words and words string out longer cause they're bouncing around room. This is before we even get to that. And this is why smaller rooms are appropriate because early reflections or a lot louder and it captured by the microphone a louder so it's almost like a replica of the word instantly afterwards or a few milliseconds afterwards on this obviously makes it really hard to understand what people are saying. However, if we move back to the middle of the room with that mark of Fain, you can now imagine that this reflection is gonna be a lot quieter. Onda a lot slower. It's had to travel to the wall this whole distance bounce, travel all the way back, and at this point it would have lost a lot of energy. So it's gonna be a lot quieter, and it's not gonna mess with our intelligibility as much 7. The Ultimate Free Technique for Improving your Vocals & Voice Overs!: Now let's think about acoustic treatment on what we could do to lower the impact of thes reflections. The best place to hang your do they or absorptive material is directly behind your head or behind you. If you were sitting on the floor, that also makes it easier because you don't have to Dreyfuss high or in a low chair, and you want it behind your head because that's where the microphone is pointing. If you're using a cardio Mark Mike phone, for example, it won't record as much sound from behind as we learned earlier. It records sound from the sides, but where it will get most of the sound from is directly in front, which will be your mouth your speech because the mic friend would be pointing at you but also directly behind your head. So if that sound went out from us bounced off this wall, the mic friend would pick up really works. It'd bounce directly into the microphone, however, when we put a barrier there an absorptive material that absorbs the energy of the sound wave. By the time it gets out the other side of this, do they or sleeping bag or heavy runk or whatever you're using. It has a lot less energy. So by the time it travels to this warm bounces off and then as to go through this again, it's gonna be a lot lot quieter. Obviously, you have gaps where the sound is gonna bounce on. This might not be from floor to ceiling, so the sound will go over the top and bounce. But this behind your head is gonna make a huge difference. And I think this is the one key thing that if you take anything from this course, or you only try one thing on this course, try this hangar, do they behind your head when you're recording because it will make a huge difference. You have no idea. I'll show you some comparisons in the next section. But for now let's talk about where else we can put treatment can also put it directly behind the microphone because of the way our voice works on the way our mouth points. Of course, more volume comes out from in front of us. So when it bounced off this war, even though in a mike from reject sound from behind, it would still pick off a lot of that reflection when we put something behind. The mike doesn't have to be as a absorptive as behind your head. Could be smaller. For example, a pillow or a smaller do they that would then lower the volume of the reflections from this back wall. Also, we can put something absorptive to the side of the microphone, and this again helps because it does record audio from the side. So when we talk in the sound bounces to the side walls and back again, we want to lower this volume as much as possible as well. And I think what you need to take from this is our main aim is just to dead and the sound. If we were recording a band or an instrument or a drum, we might not necessarily want to do that. But with speech, we don't want river. It doesn't add to the sound. It doesn't really add any interest. It just ruins the intelligibility. So if we add as many absorptive materials as we can, first of all, behind us and then around the microphone, we make the sound a lot better on we reduce that river and it gets the point where if you use enough materials, you can actually get rid of that revival together. So now let's listen to some examples of how much acoustic treatment come really affect the sound of your recording. 8. WOW - Take a Listen!: So now I want to show you how big an impact. Using acoustic treatment, homemade acoustic treatment, even how big an impact it can have on your recording. And this is probably the biggest change you could make that will have the largest effect. It's a festival I want to play your recording. That's without any acoustic treatment in the room that I'm currently in. This is with an NT one microphone, which, you might remember is a large diaphragm condenser so natural unclear. So let's take a listen without any room treatment. Andi, listen for how much reverb you can hear and how much it affects the intelligibility. Off the track, the quick brown fox jumps over a lazy dog. The quick brown fox jumps over a lazy dog. The quick brown fox jumps over a lazy dog. The quick brown fox jumps over a lazy dog she can hear. That's pretty bad. I mean, this is quite a small room, lots of reflective surfaces. Andi of See, the louder I talk, the more extreme the reverb is really, really has a negative effect. Let's listen again. The quick brown fox jumps over a lazy dog. Can you hear that echo and how unnatural that sounds, how amateur it sounds. It's quite annoying, really. Personally, I find that quite annoying. So now let's listen to exactly the same microphone. Exactly same distance six inches again. But this time we have acoustic treatment, and this is an assortment off a Dubay behind me on a clothes rail on DSM, sleeping bags around the microphone. I'll show you an image after this so you can see exactly what I've done. But for now, let's just take a listen to the difference. The quick brown fox jumps over a lazy dog. The quick brown fox jumps over a lazy dog. The quick brown fox jumps over a lazy dog. The quick brown fox jumps over a lazy dog. The quick brown fox jumps over a lazy dog. The quick brown fox jumps over a lazy dog. Wow, Can you hear that difference? It's amazing, and that was free. That took me 10 minutes to set up. It's a bit annoying. I had to sit on the floor, but I'm sure you can put up with that for the improvement in the sound. There's no reverb. It'll really and this is what we want. We want to make it sound really dead. Like we're in a room with lots of treatment. Lots of absorption. This is how you make speech? Some really professional. Andi, give it really kind of understandable, an intelligible sound. Now let's listen to those next to each other so you can hear directly the difference. And I'm gonna take the loudest parts of both sections gonna put out there. I'm just gonna lose this and play a few times so you can hear the difference to really drill in how important this is. The quick brown fox jumps over a lazy dog. The quick brown fox jumps over a lazy dog. The quick brown fox jumps over a lazy dog. The quick brown fox jumps over a lazy dog so you can really hear the difference. Now it's just ridiculous on. Like I said, that's absolutely free. This is the main secret that I want you to take on board because it's free. You come on, this will take you 10 minutes and you can really hear the difference that makes it's quite incredible, really. The quick brown fox jumps over a lazy dog. Now let's also take a listen to Cem extremely loud. This is kind of the loudest. I can talk comfortably without shouting. This is We have acoustic treatment again. Same microphone at six inches, which want you to hear this and hear how, No matter how hard I try, I can actually get to sound bad. And I'm talking really loud here. So take a listen. The quick brown fox jumps over a lazy dog. The quick brown fox jumps over a lazy dog. Now let's compare that again. Teoh the untreated recording you can see it's even louder. The quick brown fox jumps over a lazy dog. The quick brown fox jumps over a lazy dog. Yet despite how loud I'm actually talking, it still sounds great. It still sounds nice and dead. It still sounds really intelligible. I could talk that loud, and it would have a negative impact on the sound. Not that you'd want to talk that loud. It's worth noting, but in case you get carried away, when you get excited like I sometimes do, you do, you end up talking quite loudly. Without that treatment, talking loudly is going to sound awful as you can hear the quick brown Fox jumps over a lazy dog with treatment. It sounds absolutely great. The quick brown fox jumps over a lazy dog in here, a lot more of the base. It's just a much higher quality sound. It's really pleasing to the years. I really like that sound on like a said. Same distance, same microphone. The only difference is the treatment. 9. Behind The Scenes - Acoustic Treatment: So let me show you how I treated my room for the intro video on for this actual course. And I can you say she how I position my microphone so you can get an idea of how to apply these techniques in the real world. So first of all, let's listen to to set up that you're hearing right now, you can see I've got do they with on a cliff source to spend it with some pillows to make it higher. And I've got sleeping bags, lots of sleeping bags all around the microphone to reduce noise from the back wall on the side walls. Never actually direct that over my speakers on my computer monitor. Let's go quite close to the wall because of the set up of the room. I couldn't sit in the middle, so I put a sleeping back there, and here you can see it never seeking bags suspended on the chair, just the back of a chair, which is a great way. And here's the most important part directly behind my head. I've got two pillows out of thick. Do they? And of course, that's where the Mike's pointing, so you can get another idea of that angle. Take a look at a picture. So they gay. That's exactly what you hear him right now Really effective and the most important. But it is, of course, the Dubay behind my head. But because I'm closest war, this sleeping back here is also very important. This is how I recorded the demonstrations on the examples off Mike. Placement on acoustic treatment. So here I've gone all out of sitting on the floor so that I'm near the carpet which will absorb reflections as opposed to the ceiling which will bounce. I'm using a large diaphragm condenser. And you see, I've got even more material around me around the sides of the microphone, in the back on again that do they on a close era and points I also draped this sleeping bag over this Hoffa's well to really block out sound from the ceiling. Finally, you can see how I recorded uta for the Inter video. This is the second angle that I didn't actually end up using. Just started right here. You can see it peeking out is the treatment that I used to decide to the microphone now because I was filming a talking head video. I couldn't hurt anything behind my head because that would look quite odd. So I to do the best I could. Using treatment just behind the microphone into the side of the microphone, she could see here. That's where the camera is on this stand. That's the mark phone on to the left. Here again on a close error. I've got a couple of sleeping bags in a heavy blanket under there, and this will just lower the reflections from this side wall and help out tightening up the sound of it uses it from this angle. They're just blocking as much sound from that War was possible because that's the only thing I could do. Is that saying you bet you couldn't see and there you have it. That's how I treated my room. At the moment. Your hair in a distance of about five inches of maybe 4.5 of got a bit closer causes the dynamic, so we need to have a nice effect. It's nice and warm sounding, not necessarily natural sound in, but I'm using the proximity effect to my advantage, to give it a nice, warm sound Andi here you can see Oh, she's in various different distances most of time, five inches. But that was all explained when I was kind of telling you the difference between each distance in the ah, the recording technique section. And finally, when I recorded the intro video, the mark frame was about five inches from my mouth, but it was actually angled upwards a bit on. It was a bit to my left as well, so that it wasn't in my face as I was filming, but still about five or six inches. Teoh eliminate background noise on to really make use of the signal to noise ratio at the same time keeping it natural and clear sounding. So there you go. 10. Exploit Mic Placement Part 1: So now that you know the importance off acoustic treatment on the ease of adding a bit of treatment and a few do vase to your room and the impact that can have in your recording, we also need to think about Mike placement because this is the second biggest factor. Room treatment will make your recording go from bad to get from unintelligible to highly intelligible. But Mike placement will completely change the characteristic for your recording. Andi In extremes, it can also make your recording bad or less intelligible. So here we have an example. The figure on the left, a silhouette of a woman on the microphone on the right, when we're looking at it from the side. So this is probably too far. If you took this to scale, the microphone would be quite far from the speaker. If we assume that hair a normal sized human, that's gonna be a bit too far, I think, on the fervor way, the mic, the more of the room you will capture. Of course, again, if we go back to the example of sitting at the back of a classroom or lecture room. If the mikes for over away. You're gonna capture Mawr off the reflections and more of the reverb than you are of the direct source the voice. Because by the time the voice has traveled to the microphone, it's also travel to the walls and the ceiling and bounced off all around. So you're gonna capture a lot less of the direct source and a lot more of the reverb. And in that sense you're capturing more of the room unless of the voice. And, of course, the more of the room we capture, especially if we don't have acoustic treatment less intelligible. The voice is going to be no. We move the mic too close, you'll say. Have a problem. If it's too close, you'll lose elements of the sound. The chest makes a big part, plays a big part in speech. And if we move the mic right up to the mouth, release the sound of the chest. And if you move too close, you could, of course, distort the sound overload the microphone. It will get really breathy. You'll be out of here all of your breaths and no effect the microphone, and this is if you want a natural sound for effect. Sometimes you can put the mic from really close. The proximity effect increases base the near you get to the microphone if it's a cardio and microphone, so you could use this to your effects. If you wanted to create that deep artificial sound, move it close. But if you want a natural sound, never moved too close to the mouth cause you lose the sound of the chest and therefore you lose the whole sound and you're concentrating on just one element being the mouth. 11. Exploit Mic Placement Part 2: So, ideally, we want the microphone at some point between these two extremes and as a rule of thumb, if you want to get a natural sound a clear sound andan overall kind of full sound. You don't have the mic at least five inches away from me, and this gifts enough room for the sound of your chest to be picked up by the microphone and also to give it a bit more of a natural sound. You're not gonna increase the base for a proximity effect if you have it five inches away, so you're gonna have a very again natural sound. Of course, like said, rules are meant to be broken. And if you do want to gift that deep effects, you could move closer. But it's a general rule of thumb. Four or five inches is a good distance to start from. If you want to get a clear sound, I always think that is, if you were holding a megaphone or an imaginary cone came out from your mouth in the direction that you're facing, you want that microphone somewhere within the cone. If it's too high, of course, it'll start sound odd if it's too low, you'll get too much of the chest. And if you move it to the purchaser of that microphone, if you've got a good room, there's a perceived them. Five and back. You move it, the more the room you capture. But if you've got some room treatment and you move it back a bit further, this is another good tip. Pair on the perimeter of that megaphone, assuming that that make phone was around 12 inches long and this is another really good guideline position to put the microphone. If you're in a good sounding room on, you want a natural sound, So five inches is a good starting point on. In most cases, a bare minimum 12 inches is another good guideline. Imagine a megaphone as long as it's in that perimeter of the cone. It could be up here or down here, or even here. The experiment and I think much more than 12 inches, and you're gonna capture too much of the room in a studio or treated room. We might want to do that. Now use in our home studio in an untreated room. We're not really gonna want to go farther than 12 inches. You hear why, in examples 12. Mic Placement Examples: So now let's have a listen to the effect that might placement has on the sound of your recording. So first of all, we're gonna hear two inches, and this is with a rode NT one, which is a large diaphragm condenser, the most common mike French use for the recording voice on the most natural clear sound. New guy's hair, two inches that the proximity effect has exaggerated the base quite a lot. And it sounds unnatural because we're not getting any of the chest ever. Listen, the quick brown fox jumped over the lazy dog. The quick brown fox jumped over a lazy dog. Okay, now let's try moving the mike a bit further back. If we go to five inches, the good guideline that I mentioned in the last video you should be out to hear now how natural and clear the sound is, and you actually get more base. But this time it's really base coming from your chest. No artificial base from the proximity effect. Ever listen, the quick brown fox jumps over a lazy dog, the quick brown fox jumps over a lazy dog. Sounds much better right now. Let's go a bit forever to 10 inches. You'll be outta here, Maura the room. But you'll still get a very natural in clear sound and still a good sound, in my opinion at least. But like I said, you can hear more of the room. So if you're in a bad standing room, this is when you start to get to that maximum of 12 inches. Let's have a listen. The quick brown fox jumped over a lazy dog. The quick brown fox jumped over a lazy dog. OK, and now let's go really far. Let's go to 20 inches, and now you'll be able to hear that this is really too far, and you can hear more of the room than you can. My voice, Even with a lot of acoustic treatment, the quick brown fox jumped over a lazy dog. The quick brown fox jumped over a lazy dog so you can hear how much difference it makes, moving the microphone backwards and forwards. This is the main factor in the character of your sound after, of course, the microphone choice, but something we can change recording to recording if you want a slightly different sound just to cover quickly. If you want more of the room. Go further back and if you want less of the room, go further forwards. But don't go too close to lose the chest unless you want to use that as an effect. 13. Awesome Sound Isolation (Getting Rid of Background Noise): So I just want to go over one topic in a bit more depth, because this is something I get often asked about on. It's a big problem for a lot of people, missus. Sound isolation. Okay, background noise and isolating your microphone in your voice from that background noise on . Easiest way to do this is to exploit the signal to noise ratio by simply getting closer to the mike. It's not easy if you can imagine the closer my voices to the microphone, the louder my voices in comparison to the background noise. I can then bring down the level of the track to get my voice is to, ah, normal volume. And in doing so, I'm reducing the background noise. However, if I was forever away from the mic talking like this, I'm a bit quiet, and now you can hear. I would have to bring up the volume off the microphone or raised again in most cases, and in doing so, I would also be raising the volume of the background noise because even though my voice has got quieter, the background noise has stayed at the same level. So when I boost to increase the volume of my voice. I'm also boosting the background noise. So if you get close to the mic Rosa, you know, made to be broken the five inch always great for a natural sound. But if noise and background noises are a huge issue in your recording environment, you can't break that rule. Get a bit closer. Get to four inches, maybe three inches if you're using a dynamic and you want to get that warmth the radio sound. So just make sure yours Close and Micah's possible without sounding unnatural were being too close. If you're in a noisy environment, it's really that easy. Secondly, you can use acoustic treatment on picking a blanket above you. Or do they above you, which a brief you mentioned is great to improve the sound anyway because you're lower the reflections from the ceiling, which is, of course, in most cases, a reflective surface. However, this has a second benefit. If you can imagine getting under the do they in bed, you won't be outta here anywhere near as much sound from around you, everything with some really muffled. And this is because the absorptive material is draped all around you and is covering the whole area around you, so really reduces background noise. Of course, you can use this to your advantage. Bring a microphone with you under there, but you don't have to do in bed. Just bring out a blanket or a heavy devi, maybe sit on the floor or even on a chair on, perhaps support the do van top of you. With two chairs, for example, I'm sure you can think of a way to do it. This will greatly reduce echo and reverb and give you a nice dead sound. But the same time it will say, reduce a lot of background noise. And thirdly, something else that we've mentioned is cardio it Mike replacement So cardio of Mike's. If you can remember, ah, heart shaped Andi don't really pick up noise from behind. So if you are in a noisy building where people talking is your main problem when the mike away from the door or if busy road outdoors is the main problem, make sure you drawn the curtains always during the court cartons. If you got them on, dpoint them mike away from the window. It's not easy, and lastly, a common problem that I have myself is found noise from your computer. So again pointing the mike away from your PC, try and get as far away as possible. But just pointing it away will have a huge impact on this is another really easy way to reduce background noise. 14. Use a Pop Filter: Now let's talk about pop shows, which I've mentioned briefly in the what your needs section otherwise known as pop filters or shield pops. People approval all sorts, but essentially all it is is a bit of material, like tights or sock stretched out over a frame. And what this does is reduces the places from your voice and reduces their impact on the microphone. So I want to say place if that's any words, particularly that start with P. Peter Piper, for example, would ruin the microphone because of the air that comes out of your mouth. When you say those words, try holding your hand in front of your mouth only a couple of inches away. Andi talking normally like this to say a few senses. Hello? What if you want to say to yourself, I don't mind. And now start a sentence that has lots of peas in it. For example, for example, Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled pepper. You'll be able to feel the wind on your hand, and you'll be out to feel the difference between a normal sentence and those places, and this is why we need a pop shield because all that wind ruins the sound, it affects the microphone, and my train picks up that wind and you get that kind of windy sound. They also overloads and microphone because it's quite loud and it moves to diaphragm, you essentially blowing the DIA from so that moves backwards and forwards. So it distorts. And this Kenly really easily ruin a recording. And it's the first sign of an amateur Holden. Yet despite this and despite the fact that a lot of people don't even bother with the pop showed they're really cheap. You can pick one up for about 10 bucks online. You can get expensive ones, but there's absolutely no point. Just get a cheap one. You can even make them yourself. There's loads of videos online. Just have a giggle about how to make a pop shield. I wouldn't personally recommend it because the quality of Ah cheap one is still going to be good enough on. I'd rather just spend a bit of money. But if you're tight on funds and you want to build your own, that's absolutely fine, and it'll have exactly the same effect. There's no good or bad. Literally. All it does is stop the wind. You could make it using tights if you have to. You could even structure sock in front of your face, but I wouldn't recommend that go for a proper pop showed it will make the biggest difference on your holdings. 15. This Is Why You Need a Pop Shield!: So now I want to quickly give you a demonstration of the difference that a pop filter can make to the sound cause it's pretty crazy, actually, the difference it makes. So let's just take a listen. The first half here, you can see where Julie's large sound waves. That's the wind, because the first half here I am not using a pop filter in the second half. Here I am. Nothing else has changed. Is the same Mike. Same distant, same gain. You'll hear how much those places Verena recording votives, Cameroon. Your recording in particular. Words of lots of peas such as Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled pepper. Close. It's Cameroon. You, according especially senses with lots of peace, such as Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled pepper. I mean, you can hear the difference there. The first half is absolutely your for you couldn't use that you can even here in the second half how big an effect the places still have. Even with a pop filter. That's how much air you admit from your mouth. The pop filter makes it a lot more manageable, but you can still quite clearly here where the air is being emitted from your mouth with the places. So let's take a listen again to know part filter such as Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled pepper in here or that air. You can hear the mic distorting and making weird sounds because it doesn't know how to react to the air being blown on it. Essentially. Now let's listen without sorry whether pop filter such as Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled pepper so you can still hear the places they don't detract from the recording. They're a lot more manageable, and you weren't really noticed him if you're not looking for them, so that's the lesson. Go and get a pop filter. 16. Shock Mounts: number accessory That could be really handy, especially if you're a noisy environment, a shock mouse. What? These are amounts that suspend the microphone on rubber bands, and these are great if there's someone walking, for example, or even if you accidentally knock the stand because normally when someone walks in, it moves to floorboards. You can hear a really low Basie thud on the microphone because the mic friend is directly attached to the stand, which is, of course, on the floor. So when the floor moves to stand moves or if you accidentally knock the stand, you get this really bad Basie sound on the microphone. And again, it can instantly ruin a recording, especially if it happens during a really good take halfway. For a word, a really good way to completely avoid this problem is a shock mount. And because the mark friends and rubber bands, none of that shock on the stand effects the microphone. So if you have lots of people living with you or you tend to not the stand when you're getting into a performance, for example, definitely go for one of thes 17. Recording Technique & Acoustics Summary: So remember to position the mic at least five inches from your mouth For a natural sound, you can go a bit shorter. Four inches is normally acceptable as well. Either said it's trial and error. Just give it a go of your microphone. But to get a natural sound in order to capture the chest and the overall character of your voice, you want to be at least five inches away from the microphone. Good things to do with you if you've got a pop filled. A pop shield is to position the pop shield five inches from the mic so that you can never get closer, and especially if you're recording someone else who doesn't necessarily know these techniques you can use. The pop shield is a physical barrier to stop from getting too close to the microphone. Don't put the mic too far away is this will reduce intelligibility because your capture more of the room, and in this point I'm assuming that you're in a room that's not treated even if you have home treatment. If you put the mike too far away, your capture the room. So unless it's a really good sounding room and you want to do that? Keep the mic less than 12 inches away from you. Position the mike in the middle of the room, another good typist to sit on the floor because a lot of people won't have a desk in the middle of the room. If you sit on the floor, you're nearer the carpet. In most firms, if you have a wooden floor, maybe that's not a great idea. But of course, the ceiling is a is a reflective surface, if you can, you can even try put in acoustic treatment or do they over the top of you. This has a really good impact as well, but in a lot of cases this is too difficult and gets too hot. So if you sit on the floor of the carpet, were absorbed, more sound and you'll be further from the ceiling, so those early reflections from the ceiling won't have as much power, and this is a good way to get directly in the middle of the room. You're not limited by your desk or your chair. Andi, if you're in the mid with the room, early reflections from the war will have no in areas much energy so you won't get that weird echo sound and try to put something absorptive behind you, at least ideally behind the mic friend to decide to the microphone as well. But behind your head is the least you can do. Toe have the biggest impact on your recording on, Of course. Use a pop shield again. A really easy step that instantly makes your recording sound professional and non amateur on. You won't ruin the recording halfway for a good take. What more could you want?