Studio equipment and other items that I use in my home voiceover recording studio.
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Microphone – I use the Sennheiser 416 Shotgun Mic – This is a professional-grade microphone. I see this in professional recording studios more than any other mic. If you are starting out or on a limited budget, take a look at the Lewitt LCT 240 bundle (one of several bundles they offer). Comes with a shock mount (highly recommended) and a cable. An even more affordable bundle is the Movo VSM-7.
Audio Interface – Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 – One of the most popular interfaces for home studios. Great sound and economy. USB, works with Mac or PC. I prefer the 2i2 to the single channel Scarlett Solo because for a little more money you get 2 channels, and a separate headphone volume control which comes in very handy. The UA Volt 2 is also becoming very popular, I’ve listened to some comparison audio online and they seem to be nearly identical, but you may prefer one feature set over the other.
Monitors – PreSonus Eris E4.5 2-Way Studio Monitors – a great low-cost option if you’re starting out. I use these because I have a hearing issue that prevents me from using reference-grade monitors. My first choice would be the Yamaha HS5 Nearfield Studio Monitors. These are great sounding pro-grade monitors that don’t cost a fortune. If my hearing issue goes away I will go back to the Yamahas. For either of these monitors I use the Sound Addicted Monitor Isolation Pads to raise the monitors off my desk to an ideal level, and isolate them from shock and vibrations.
Pop Filters – these are placed in between the mic and the performer to cut down on plosives (i.e. p-pops). I use the Stedman PS101, but check out the EJT Pop Filter as a lower-cost alternative. Here’s a pic of my setup to show how to use this filter with a straight stand.
Microphone Stand – I use a Proline straight stand. I prefer a heavy duty mic stand with a heavy base to prevent tipping, and straight stands are much easier to fit in a small booth. Be careful about using boom stands as they are less stable if you’re not careful. Stay away from lightweight, light duty stands as they tend to be poorly made. Quality stands are not much more and definitely worth the price.
Microphone Cables – If you’re starting out, the Amazon Basics cables should be fine. If you’re getting serious about your audio, upgrade to Monster cables. If you’re REALLY serious, Mogami cables are as high end as you’ll ever need to go. Make sure you get the right connector type – this is determined by your microphone and audio interface. For a typical home voiceover studio you will need a cable with male to female XLR connectors. And whatever size you think you need, buy the next longer size – 6 feet is not as long as it sounds!
Headphones – This is easy, I use the Sony MDR7506 headphones, these are great-sounding, professional quality headphones at a great price. I’ve never encountered any headphone I liked better than these. Pro tip: if you want to sound like a real voiceover pro at a session, call your headphones “cans.”
Headset – Believe it or not, this Beebang headset for my cordless phone is a crucial part of my studio gear. I use it regularly for phone patch sessions with clients, and the most important features are the extra long mic arm and the built in volume control. On my unit, the arm is a little loose and tends to rotate out of position when I don’t want it to, so I use a piece of tape to hold it in place.
Computer and Software – I use Sound Forge Pro to record and edit all my voiceover, and Vegas Edit to create clips for YouTube and social media. I also occasionally use Studio One for multitrack compositing for voiceover demos and other projects. I currently run Windows 10 on a custom made PC system.
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