VO-BB - A VO Family Forum Index VO-BB - A VO Family
Welcoming Facebook Refugees since 2021!
 
 FAQFAQ   SearchSearch   MemberlistMemberlist   UsergroupsUsergroups   RegisterRegister 
 ProfileProfile   Log in to check your private messagesLog in to check your private messages   Log inLog in 

My First Attempt at a Home VO Setup
Goto page 1, 2, 3  Next
 
Post new topic   Reply to topic    VO-BB - A VO Family Forum Index -> Gear !
View previous topic :: View next topic  
Author Message
MikeN



Joined: 10 Oct 2017
Posts: 22
Location: Somewhere on a bar room floor in Texas

PostPosted: Wed Oct 20, 2021 11:37 am    Post subject: My First Attempt at a Home VO Setup Reply with quote

Here's the setup I'm starting out with. Gear includes:

Neumann TLM-102 Microphone/Pop Filter
Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 Interface
Adobe Audition Software
Yamaha MG12XU Mixer
dbx 1066 Compressor/Limiter/Gate
dbx 231 Graphic Equalizer
Sound deadening foam on walls and ceiling

I know I have to work on deadening more of the hard surfaces. The Neumann might be overkill just starting out, but one thing I did remember from my on-air days was the value of a high quality mic. The Compressor and EQ I got basically for free.

Comments, criticisms and suggestions are welcomed!





Last edited by MikeN on Wed Oct 20, 2021 3:35 pm; edited 1 time in total
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Bish
3.5 kHz


Joined: 22 Nov 2009
Posts: 3719
Location: Lost in the cultural wasteland of Long Island

PostPosted: Wed Oct 20, 2021 1:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Your mic is absolutely fine... and will probably stop the urge to get a new one. The TLM is a quality piece of kit, and if it suits your voice... then you are set for life. the Focusrite (as long as it's not the 1st gen) is functional and fit-for-purpose (the 1st gen had a high failure rate). Adobe Audition is as good as it gets for a VO's DAW.

Now, we get to something I personally have issues with. Outboard equipment. Try to get your signal path working without the dbx kit. Please take this the right way, but many people who have spent a lot of time behind a mic in radio love the outboard stuff... tuned to their signature sound. I get it... but that's not what VO production houses are looking for. That's their job. An engineer can do everything he need to your voice... but what he can't do is undo the processing you've applied. Try a simple mic-interface-DAW chain and fix any issues by tuning your environment, adjusting your technique etc. If you need some processing (e.g. a brick-wall 80Hz high-pass filter to lose some rumble) do it in the DAW.

For what it's worth, about ten years ago, I spent ages wrestling with a dbx286. My recordings improved immeasurably when I dumped it Smile
_________________
Bish a.k.a. Bish
Smoke me a kipper... I'll be back for breakfast.
I will not feed the trolls... I will not feed the trolls... I will not feed the trolls... I will not feed the trolls.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website
MikeN



Joined: 10 Oct 2017
Posts: 22
Location: Somewhere on a bar room floor in Texas

PostPosted: Wed Oct 20, 2021 3:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Bish wrote:
Please take this the right way, but many people who have spent a lot of time behind a mic in radio love the outboard stuff... tuned to their signature sound.


Thank you Bish... and no offense taken at all. You are absolutely correct. Radio guys...especially ones from my generation...love gear, knobs, switches and so forth. This was decades before sophisticated computer control was available, so our control rooms looked like the inside of an Apollo capsule. One particular station I worked at had eight graphic equalizers (made by Orban Parasound if memory serves) and each air personality had their own EQ set to their mic that we had to switch to when we started our shift. They even put plexiglass covers over the controls so we wouldn't change the settings!! Laugh

I was basically given the dbx units, so it costs me nothing to keep them in the rack. I have researched a bit and have learned that, as you said, production houses want "raw" audio, so my plan was to run them in bypass mode. I can also easily take them out of the path by re-routing a few cables.

The Focusrite is indeed a Gen 2.

Do you have any opinion on a mic preamp? Or does this fall into the category of "leave the sound alone"? I don't have one, but some people swear by them.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Bish
3.5 kHz


Joined: 22 Nov 2009
Posts: 3719
Location: Lost in the cultural wasteland of Long Island

PostPosted: Wed Oct 20, 2021 4:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My opinion on mic-pres and interfaces tend to be a bit simplistic. I honestly feel that you only get a marginal improvement every time you double the price! As I said earlier, I'm looking for as clean and transparent a sound as possible. I'm not in the market for an expensive tube pre-amp with a NOS 12ax7 or anything like that. Where I have spent more for a pre-amp, it's usually been for build quality and the ability to by-pass the pre-amps and directly hit the DAC (this is partly because I need a work-horse interface for both my VO work and my musical hobbies). To this end, the Apogee Duet served well, and my current Audient iD22 had additional hardware routing capabilities that served me well while I was running ISDN.

Here's the rub. I sent off some files to an engineer friend. One set each using a Sennheiser MKH416, and a CAD e100s. The three pre-amps used were my backup Focusrite 2i2, the Audient iD22 with internal pres, and the Mackie VLZ3 (in a 1202 mixer) patched into the pre by-pass on the Audient. The result? I was told there were some differences in the mics, but absolutely negligible differences in the pre-amps. Effectively, all six were fit-for-purpose and would have slotted into any production.

So, in my opinion, it's lovely to own a nice piece of kit... something well-specced and well-built... but as long as it does its job, there's no need to overspend.

Just as a side note. A few months ago my Audient developed a fault. I started using the Focusrite instead (as I didn't need the ISDN patching any more). No practical difference at all. I fixed the Audient (it was a blown capacitor on the main board) and swapped it back in. It's nicer... from an operational "hands-on" point of view... but I really hear no difference.

Of course... all this could simply mean that my ears are crap Smile
_________________
Bish a.k.a. Bish
Smoke me a kipper... I'll be back for breakfast.
I will not feed the trolls... I will not feed the trolls... I will not feed the trolls... I will not feed the trolls.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website
Philip Banks
Je Ne Sais Quoi


Joined: 20 Jun 2005
Posts: 10799
Location: Portgordon, Scotland

PostPosted: Thu Oct 21, 2021 2:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Gear marketing = They'll hear what they want to hear.

Isn't the Avalon M7 pre non tube post double tube great for producing harmonic warmth? NO! A few years ago I bought one and could hear no difference between it and my raw mic, plugged into a baby mixer using only phantom power. I posted a clip here. I did an edit mid word so half the audio was me in the raw and the other half was the $2,500 mic pre. NO ONE NOTICED but all concluded IT sounded AWESOME!

Concludes the case for the prosecution Smile
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website
George
Contributore Level V


Joined: 09 Dec 2019
Posts: 188
Location: Seattle, WA

PostPosted: Thu Oct 21, 2021 6:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm curious to hear what you sound like in that environment. "Acoustic foam" looks very nice but is almost entirely useless. I found this out the hard way once upon a time. It barely absorbs much of anything, it might help a BIT with room reflection, and if your room has parallel walls the slapback could be noticeable.

If you're comfortable doing so, maybe post an unedited sample of what you sound like in there. I could be completely off base and it sounds fantastic and I'll owe you a beer. Otherwise, if there's minimal but noticeable bounce it's usually pretty easy to correct. I have more than a few suggestions and George Whittam will forget more than I'll ever learn about this stuff so he's a great resource here too.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Bruce
Boardmeister


Joined: 06 Jun 2005
Posts: 7567
Location: Portland, OR

PostPosted: Thu Oct 21, 2021 7:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Correctamundo George. Foam panels are weak compared to acoustic panels that stop the sound. And you donít need a boatload of them to do the job. Example, I have a fellow VO and friend who has to spend a couple of months in a private rehab facility after a major surgery. He has a standard bedroom he can use as a studio Ö one with standard room bounce. He needed temporary sound deadening. I took ten $10 moving blankets and s p a c e d them around on the walls using temporary hooks. I had two left over and left them wadded up along two of the baseboards. The room sounds perfect and heís doing national voice work out of there now. Only about 30% of the visible wall space is covered. None of the ceiling. Thatís all that was needed in this case and you can get by with less if you use proper acoustic panels. You just need to interrupt the movement of sound waves, not soak them all up. Google the term ďacoustic panelsĒ and youíll find companies like www.atsacoustics.com that make very attractive solutions, especially compared to cheap moving blankets.

B
_________________
VO-BB Member #31 Enlisted June, 2005

I'm not a Zoo, but over the years I've played one on radio/TV. .
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website
George
Contributore Level V


Joined: 09 Dec 2019
Posts: 188
Location: Seattle, WA

PostPosted: Thu Oct 21, 2021 9:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

To piggyback on Bruce's response, if you're willing to put on some gloves and sweat a bit, it's relatively easy to roll your own absorption insulation panels. atsacoustics makes great products and the cost is representative of that greatness.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
MikeN



Joined: 10 Oct 2017
Posts: 22
Location: Somewhere on a bar room floor in Texas

PostPosted: Thu Oct 21, 2021 10:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you gentlemen...this is exactly the information I was looking for. I will re-think and re-adjust the sound material. I know someone who does have spare blankets (long story) that I can purloin.

And George...I'll do almost anything for a beer! I'll put something together (although be prepared...it may be a bit amateur hour).

Since this was my first time doing sound deadening, I was kinda going on the cheap. I figured foam was a good start. Shocked
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
todd ellis
A Zillion


Joined: 02 Jan 2007
Posts: 10173
Location: little egypt

PostPosted: Thu Oct 21, 2021 11:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

do your lungs a favor & look for recycled denim insulation. good sound properties & no off gassing over time.
_________________
"i know philip banks": todd ellis
who's/on/1st?

Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website
Karyn OBryant
Cinquecento


Joined: 23 Jul 2013
Posts: 556
Location: Portlandia-adjacent

PostPosted: Thu Oct 21, 2021 2:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

todd ellis wrote:
do your lungs a favor & look for recycled denim insulation. good sound properties & no off gassing over time.


Yes. This.
_________________
* * * * * * * * * *
Pretending to be other people since 1986.

www.karynobryant.com
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website
todd ellis
A Zillion


Joined: 02 Jan 2007
Posts: 10173
Location: little egypt

PostPosted: Thu Oct 21, 2021 2:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

i made 1x3 pine frames backed with 1/4" luan
filled the frames with recycled denim
covered with cheap cotton sheets
hung from french cleats so they can be moved (or removed) at will


_________________
"i know philip banks": todd ellis
who's/on/1st?

Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website
George
Contributore Level V


Joined: 09 Dec 2019
Posts: 188
Location: Seattle, WA

PostPosted: Fri Oct 22, 2021 8:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Todd that's GENIUS! Is that recycled denim in the cloud as well? I'm seriously going to look into that for another room I'm setting up.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Bish
3.5 kHz


Joined: 22 Nov 2009
Posts: 3719
Location: Lost in the cultural wasteland of Long Island

PostPosted: Fri Oct 22, 2021 9:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here's my main studio room (before it got messy). The wall panels are 2x4, loaded with OC703. The corner chunks are the same. All covered with burlap. Since this was taken, I've also replaced a number of the ceiling panels with the same.



Here's the booth area (it also has a ceiling cloud):


It also has a panel in the ceiling.
_________________
Bish a.k.a. Bish
Smoke me a kipper... I'll be back for breakfast.
I will not feed the trolls... I will not feed the trolls... I will not feed the trolls... I will not feed the trolls.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website
George
Contributore Level V


Joined: 09 Dec 2019
Posts: 188
Location: Seattle, WA

PostPosted: Fri Oct 22, 2021 10:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Love that Bish.

My booth is also OC703 covered in burlap; there was a local source that had the 703 for cheap a while back. It's easy to put into frames and cover up but make sure to wear rubber or nitrile gloves and cover your arms; it'll irritate the skin.

(just in case you go that route. i still think recycled denim is crazy brilliant)
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Display posts from previous:   
Post new topic   Reply to topic    VO-BB - A VO Family Forum Index -> Gear ! All times are GMT - 7 Hours
Goto page 1, 2, 3  Next
Page 1 of 3

 
Jump to:  
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum


Powered by phpBB © 2001, 2005 phpBB Group