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Author Topic: Recommendations for a USB microphone for a novice voice actor?  (Read 911 times)

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Online Gutbucket

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GF is looking into perusing voice over / voice actor work.  I can get her started with my gear, but she will need something simple which she is able to set up and easily operate herself.  I'm thinking some USB podcasting type microphones are now of sufficient quality and will allow her to plug directly into a Windows laptop or Ipad.

Recommendations, caveats, other words of wisdom?
« Last Edit: July 21, 2020, 02:11:42 PM by Gutbucket »
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Offline heathen

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Re: Recommendations for a USB microphone for a novice voice actor?
« Reply #1 on: July 21, 2020, 01:38:04 PM »
I don't have any firsthand experience, but the AT2020USB PLUS looks very interesting.  The headphone monitoring built into the mic seems like it would make things that much simpler for her.

I know I've seen the Blue Yeti recommended a lot as well, but again I have no firsthand experience.
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Online Gutbucket

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Re: Recommendations for a USB microphone for a novice voice actor?
« Reply #2 on: July 21, 2020, 02:14:04 PM »
Thanks, I'll take a look at those.  Built-in headphone monitoring does seem ideal.
musical volition > vibrations > voltages > numeric values > voltages > vibrations> virtual teleportation time-machine experience
Better recording made easy - >>Improved PAS table<< | Made excellent- >>click here to download the Oddball Microphone Technique illustrated PDF booklet<< (note: This is a 1st draft, now several years old and in need of revision!  Stay tuned)

Offline nassau73

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Re: Recommendations for a USB microphone for a novice voice actor?
« Reply #3 on: July 21, 2020, 04:41:21 PM »
Thanks, I'll take a look at those.  Built-in headphone monitoring does seem ideal.

I worked on air in commercial radio for over 15 years. While I was "developing", my mentors cautioned against listening to myself over headphones as the sole method of gauging progress.

While helpful to monitor the various inputs, the best way to hear what you are really sounding like is to record and listen back. That's why air check machines were set to turn on and start recording every time we cracked open the mic.

Online Gutbucket

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Re: Recommendations for a USB microphone for a novice voice actor?
« Reply #4 on: July 21, 2020, 05:22:09 PM »
That makes sense too.  Excellent entry in the words of wisdom category, thx!
musical volition > vibrations > voltages > numeric values > voltages > vibrations> virtual teleportation time-machine experience
Better recording made easy - >>Improved PAS table<< | Made excellent- >>click here to download the Oddball Microphone Technique illustrated PDF booklet<< (note: This is a 1st draft, now several years old and in need of revision!  Stay tuned)

Offline goodcooker

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Re: Recommendations for a USB microphone for a novice voice actor?
« Reply #5 on: July 21, 2020, 10:10:44 PM »

I have a friend who works in voice over so I asked him what he recommends. First answer is the old standby mics - EV RE20, Shure SM7b.

I asked him again specifically for USB and he said he has a Blue Yeti that he carries with him all the time as a just in case or a fix it mic since it has selectable patterns but can sometimes be a pain since if the desk is low. He has to put something under it to raise it up to be comfortable.

Pointed out that you can get the AT2020 USB in a package with a boom and a pair of cans from B and H for $200. https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/1435261-REG/audio_technica_at2020usb_pk_at2020u_usb_plus_studio.html like mentioned above. Seems like a good startup package.
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Online Gutbucket

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Re: Recommendations for a USB microphone for a novice voice actor?
« Reply #6 on: November 06, 2020, 04:06:37 PM »
Thanks everyone for the recommendations. 

Just took delivery of the AT2020 USB startup package from B&H today, which should serve to get her going as a nice birthday gift.  Once we play around with it a bit I'll try to remember to come back and post my impressions.
musical volition > vibrations > voltages > numeric values > voltages > vibrations> virtual teleportation time-machine experience
Better recording made easy - >>Improved PAS table<< | Made excellent- >>click here to download the Oddball Microphone Technique illustrated PDF booklet<< (note: This is a 1st draft, now several years old and in need of revision!  Stay tuned)

Online Gutbucket

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Re: Recommendations for a USB microphone for a novice voice actor?
« Reply #7 on: November 18, 2020, 11:32:54 AM »
AT2020 USB works.  Was recognized by a Windows laptop as both input and headphone output immediately upon plugging in the USB cable.  Have yet to try it into her Ipad.  The articulating arm included in the kit is pretty cheap, yet has been functional enough thus far.  I'd likely end up replacing it if using the microphone that way regularly.  The headphones are decent yet not highly isolating. 

I installed Audacity and made a few test recordings of voice, and layered on some uke tracks just because I wanted to hear what the mic sounded like on it.

Before walking her through use of Audacity, does any one have suggestions for other recording software which is simple for a non-technical novice?  I'd like to make it as easy and frustration-free as possible for her so she can concentrate on things other than navigating the recording and editing software.
musical volition > vibrations > voltages > numeric values > voltages > vibrations> virtual teleportation time-machine experience
Better recording made easy - >>Improved PAS table<< | Made excellent- >>click here to download the Oddball Microphone Technique illustrated PDF booklet<< (note: This is a 1st draft, now several years old and in need of revision!  Stay tuned)

Online mnm207

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Re: Recommendations for a USB microphone for a novice voice actor?
« Reply #8 on: November 18, 2020, 12:45:53 PM »
I use Hindenburg to edit a podcast and find it pretty straightforward. Have also recorded directly into it with USB mics. There are a couple of price tiers, but it's affordable.
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Online Gutbucket

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Re: Recommendations for a USB microphone for a novice voice actor?
« Reply #9 on: November 18, 2020, 04:13:38 PM »
Thanks, I'll take a look.

Open to other suggestions as well.
Simple start/stop recording, trimming and editing of single channel input monophonic material is all that is needed.

musical volition > vibrations > voltages > numeric values > voltages > vibrations> virtual teleportation time-machine experience
Better recording made easy - >>Improved PAS table<< | Made excellent- >>click here to download the Oddball Microphone Technique illustrated PDF booklet<< (note: This is a 1st draft, now several years old and in need of revision!  Stay tuned)

 

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