What is the best microphone for recording voice over?

What is the best microphone for recording voice over?

There are so many diverse models of mics on the market. How should consumers select the type required for them? When the poll was conducted, it revealed that each fourth consumer buying such equipment follows trial and error pattern. However, we think that it’s too pricey to act like that. If money is not the issue, then this is at least rather time-consuming to purchase one device after another until the right model is discovered. We think that research is the only way to follow. We also understand that it’s rather challenging to find the best microphone. The model of the mic should be able to highlight and even improve the beautiful voice while recording.

The customer needs a scheme to determine a proper mic for voice recording. Look through the steps helping to define the best microphone for voice acting.

My quick suggestions

Purchase of suitable device depends upon the desirable result and its applications. Being short of time take advantage of quick suggestions:

  • People interested in premium large diaphragm condenser best microphone, should purchase iconic Neumann U87.
  • The consumers who can’t afford expensive mics but want to acquire budget high-quality condensers with large diaphragms, should select Rode NT1-A, suitable for voice recording as well.
  • People who plan to make vlogs and look among the microphones for it should select Blue Yeti.
  • Looking for small diaphragm condenser, refuse from cheap options. It’s more reasonable to acquire the devices at a higher price if the person doesn’t have funds for premium gear.

How do microphones work?

It’s a device that performs converter’s function, turning acoustical energy into electrical current. When sound waves hit the diaphragm, it starts vibrating moving the coil in a magnet or vice versa.

The scheme of conversion differs for each kind of device.

To make the best choice, it is better to understand how the voice microphone functions.

Some compare the action with an ear receiving the signal for its further conversion into electrical energy.

5 steps to pick your microphone for voice over

The person selecting the best microphone should always consider why he buys the mic. The intended application also directs the person.

The mic that works perfectly for musical instruments may not suit for voice recording. Therefore consumers need special recommendations to acquire such mics.

Step 1. Choose a connection type: USB or XLR

It is very important to think about connectivity in advance – before the purchase of equipment. There are 2 main groups of these devices: with USB or XLR jacks. Some of them have both types of connectors but usually the device features one type of jack only.

USB

USB mics are connected to any device with the same port. For this reason, it’s easy to use them. The devices with USB output make recording unproblematic and fun. Conversion to digital format is fulfilled immediately. The user doesn’t need a sound card to perform work of this type. However, one of the biggest drawbacks is inability to improve the audio later on. The processing is performed internally, with assistance of built-in processing hardware converting file to digital format.

The computer thinks that USB mic is a separate audiodevice, therefore, it isn’t problematic to combine several recording sources not using a sound card.

XLR

XLR type mics are often associated with pro-level audio. Studios, for instance, record sound in this format only. The same refers to radio stations and all other professionals working with the sound. XLR cables provide more balanced sound. As a result, the person gets the best voice and clean audio. Therefore XLR-type mic is often chosen by audio professionals.

Not all people know that XLR is an abbreviation. It stands for X and L (locking) connectors and R (‘rubber boot’, that, actually, is not used any longer, but the term remained).

XLRmics employ a male to female cable running to mixer/audio interface connected to the computer via USB port.

The analog devices are connected to the soundcard jack with sound processed by sound card then. Such processing delivers better result in comparison with inbuilt procedure performed by USB mics. The sound received via XLR is balanced, as it was said already. Consequently, its isolation is enhanced therefore its quality is higher.

However, it’s not enough to have the XLR mic and cable of this type. The interface and mixer is needed enabling mic’s recognition by the computer. It demands extra expenditures starting from $40 per unit. Such complications often make non-professional users refuse from analog mics. USB devices offer easier and cheaper solutions.

The users who are going to record at home also need a digital audio workstation. (Audacity is the most common one, but there are more affordable variants).

In contrast to USB mics, the users can use several XLR type mics simultaneously. There are synchronization problem with clocks of each USB device. When one of them gets out of sync, it spoils the result. Opposing to USB-types devices, it’s better to mix with help of mixer and XLR mic then.

Step 2. Choose a microphone type: Condenser or Dynamic

It’s a never-ending dispute even among the professionals. Should the consumers choose dynamic or condenser microphones for their activity? The devices of two types involve various principles of conversion. It doesn’t refer to its directional feature. Both mics have a membrane, that’s vibrating when air moves around. Then transformation occurs – acoustical energy becomes electrical, but transducer properties differ.

It’s very important to understand how these mics differ. There are usually both types of them in the pro-level studio.

If the customer doesn’t know which the best microphone is, there’s always opportunity to buy the mic for voice recording that combines both types. sE Electronics X1, for instance, belongs to all-purpose mics.

Dynamic

These devices are used more often. It’s acute for different spheres. It refers to musical performance just the same way as to surveillance. Majority of dynamic mics do not require power – this fact explains the reason for their popularity.

It’s a good option when the person needs to record something on location ad hoc as it performs well during live recording.

Some people assure that dynamic mics can endure almost everything therefore it’s better to take them on tour. However, not all types of dynamic mics are suitable for touring. There are also fragile types of mics such as tube mics. Some dynamic mics contain rather fragile components. At the same time, high-quality condensers can be more robust.

Condenser

Condensers are often applied for recording of vocals and musical instruments. The reason is capability to reflect slightest changes in the tonal quality of the voice or musical instrument. These devices are perfect when distant sound should be recorded, for instance, the sounds in the room or even the sound of the instrument reflecting off the walls of the recording studio. The reader is, probably, aware that some studios cover the walls of their rooms with different materials to have the opportunity to record different sound.

The biggest part of such mics are designed to be used at their permanent places, being on boom arms or stands in contrast to the touring options, which are carried by the owner everywhere and therefore placed into the boxes and taken out of there periodically.

Most condensers have their own battery.

The condensers can bleed at times and it’s not problematic when there are many loud instruments in a mix. The finer details are not noticed in this case. It’s good when the person just records one voice or one instrument, but even self-noise is captured then.

Consider condensers’ tonal characteristics and compare them with the same features in dynamic mics. The expert just recommends to hear the result obtained. Just try condenser in different recording situations and see how it works. If the result is better than with dynamic mics, you feel that voice features some warmth and more life in such performance, then it’s worth selecting the condenser. The main thing is to get the result that doesn’t require endless editing later on and making the recording lifeless.

The convenient thing about condensers – they often feature numerous patterns for possessor to select suitable for the situation.

Step 3. Choose a diaphragm size: small or large

In case the condenser was chosen, the question arises what size it should be. Some recommend trying the mics with different diaphragms. This experiment will clarify everything for them at once. However, the novices may not have the opportunity to try different types therefore they need an advice on the subject.

Small diaphragm

These devices are often selected by consumers for a number of reasons:

  • Result is described as neutral without any coloring or exaggeration.
  • Incredible width of frequency range.

However, sound professionals advise not to acquire budget variants when buying small diaphragm condensers. They assure that it’s possible to make a good start with their large diaphragm counterparts on a budget but it won’t work the same way with budgeted small-diaphragm devices. It explains why the beginning music producers choose the devices with large diaphragm when they start working in the sphere.

Large diaphragm

This is the choice when natural sound isn’t the goal. The sound seems to be bigger, warmer and frequently chosen for recording voice overs or the vocals. It’s ideal for musical instruments when the user wants richer sound. It is especially effective for low frequencies. The benefit of these mics is high sensitivity that turns into drawback if used improperly, in non-treated space.

Step 4. Select a microphone pattern

Creation of superb result is easy with the right pattern. Therefore studios have whole collections of gear for different recording situations. Amateurs can’t afford it, so they are choosier and avoid mistakes while shopping. Besides, they know intended application that alleviates the task.

Those who record using wrong pattern, moving source closer cause other problems. Excessively close position brings to unnatural sound and this is far from being an ideal recording.

Cardioid

Among different parameters of mics, pattern is one of the most important. It portrays where the mic is especially sensitive. What sound does it pick up? Where is it located? In case the unidirectional device is used, it captures everything in front of it and on the sides. Heart-shaped area around mic is its capturing zone, hence, its name.

Subcardioid

It resembles the previous type and captures source in the same area, but the focus is tighter. Subcardioid mic provides some room-presence-effect, reflecting reverberations as well.

Omnidirectional

The gear with omnidirectional pattern captures everything in a 360degree radius. It means that it captures everything heard in the room no matter where the source of sound is located. It’s actually not suitable for recording voice over. There shouldn’t be a feel of presence is a room.

Bi-directional

Bidirectional mic is also called figure-8 because the capturing area reminds this figure. It captures everything in the back/front, ignoring the sides.

Shotgun

In some recording situations highly directional devices are needed in order to hear the source well. Shotgun suits such purposes. Unidirectional device focuses on the source and captures the sound attentively. At that, the person recorded should stand still. The efficacy is achieved only when the person’s directed to it. It obtained the name from the form of the design, which resembles barrel.

The advantage: suppresses unwanted background noise, thus capturing the source flawlessly. And though environmental noise is present on the recording, its level is low.

The public speakers tend to use them when making a speech. Any public gathering with much noise requires such equipment. It’s powerful due to narrow pickup angle. Despite the ambient noise the device captures the speaker only.

Step 5. Understanding frequency response

The manufacturers provide us with all necessary parameters of the device produced by them including the frequency response. Non-savvy users are sometimes not able to assess the figures or charts displayed to them. It’s necessary to understand the notion of frequency response to get an idea about the characteristics.

Each sound has its frequency, which is measured in Hertz. The person is able to hear the sound within the range of frequencies from 20 to 20,000 Hertz in a healthy person.

When we read about the frequency response, it showcases the capability of sound reproduction of different frequencies. High quality gear reproduces the full spectrum of frequencies recognized by human. The person should understand that it’s only one characteristic. The customer should consider different factors when selecting the proper device.

Common scenarios of using a voice over microphone

The person needs a mic for broadcasting on Twitch. He tried XLR and USB mic and could not see the difference in sound quality between them. Both of them work great for his untrained ear. He just hears the hiss and its amount in different types of mics. He asks: Isn’t it pointless to spend more bucks on an Interface/mic set up?

Probably, the ear is really untrained therefore the person doesn’t see the difference, but it should be if everything was done correctly. It can happen this way, if low end condenser microphone was used with XLR output. In other words, the result doesn’t depend upon the type of connection only. There are other factors as well such as wire, interface etc. But there is no reason for the guy to buy XLR type mic. It would be enough to use USB for his purposes. XLR mic is a good option for some beginning musician, sound engineer or a singer.

The novice wants to try his hand in voice overs and asks: What kind of voice over microphones should I choose? The cardioid mic would be the better choice. Most vloggers use blue Yeti. This is USB mic with a good sound quality. It is easy to get the result in digital format for immediate uploading of the result to YouTube.

Best microphones for voice acting

It’s essential for many to have the equipment that captures sounds on a high level, especially when it’s a professional necessity. Some mics help to reveal voice over talents therefore study the information given below attentively to determine the best microphone for voice acting. It can contribute to your career.

Audio-Technica AT2020USB+

Audio-Technica AT2020USB PLUS
Audio-Technica AT2020USB+

The customers can use the mic of this model for different purposes successfully. This condenser is the best among the budget microphones. Looking for the best USB mic, the person should pay attention to this fabulous model.

grade: 4.6/5


 

 

Blue Snowball iCE

Blue Snowball ICE
Blue Snowball

In pursuit of the best condenser, the person can run across even cheaper alternative among the budget microphones. The extravagant model of Snowball with a convenient stand is mainly used for home studio recording.

grade: 4.3/5


 

 

CAD E-100S

CAD E-100S
CAD E-100S

The experts highly assess E-100S for its incredible performance. It takes a special place among voice over microphones being a powerful alternative to other devices. It’s also the best microphone for deep voice.

grade: 4.3/5


 

 

Electro Voice RE-20

Electrovoice RE20
Electrovoice RE20

This is a fantastic solution for recording voice overs! Despite its pricetag, it’s worth every penny. It’s often used for studio recording, where it’s frequently preferred over microphones manufactured by other brands.

grade: 4.7/5


 

 

Harlan Hogan VO

Harlan Hogan VO
Harlan Hogan VO

It’s a universal device for different kinds of voice therefore it’s unrivalled when recording voice overs. The sound reproduced by it is awesome! It’s a wonderful choice for best voice over.

grade: 3.7/5


 

 

Heil PR-40

Heil PR-40
Heil PR-40

It’s one of the dynamic microphones that received so many positive reviews from the consumers. It’s irreplaceable for voice over talents serving a range of different purposes. It can be applied in diverse recording situations and the result never stops to impress the lovers of excellent sound!

grade: 4.4/5


 

 

Neumann TLM 102 MT

Neumann TLM-102
The best choice

No other device is so clear and precise as this model. The brand always presented the best microphones for different applications and this model is not exclusion. Actually, it can be called the best microphone to record voice!

grade: 4.8/5


 

 

Neumann U87

Neumann U87
Neumann U87

Those who want to enjoy the phenomenal vocals, should purchase this device. The best voice capturing is guaranteed for you. Be ready to put out its full potential when recording voice.

grade: 3.6/5


 

 

Neumann TLM103

Neumann TLM 103
Neumann TLM 103

This is the studio microphone for real audiophiles. Forget about the best budget microphones, which are no match to the product of elite brand. The condenser features a clear and warm sound that can’t be compared with anything else.

grade: 4.4/5


 

 

Rode Procaster

Rode Procaster
Rode Procaster

What is the best recording microphone for voice? It should perform different functions as this device – one of the best among voice over microphones! Any customer will be excited with this model. Being one of the most interesting dynamic mics, the device can be used for hours during narrations, suppressing the background noise effortlessly.

grade: 4.7/5


 

 

Rode NT-USB

Rode NT-USB
Rode NT-USB

A beautiful and sleek device is supplied with USB, consequently, the procedure of recording voice is easier than ever. Transfer to digital format is fulfilled immediately and the performer gets the narration immediately in the format of computer file. It enters the list of best USB microphones.

grade: 4.4/5


 

 

Rode NT1A

Rode NT1A Anniversary Vocal Condenser Microphone Package
The best choice

When superb sound at modest value is required, the NT1A suits perfectly. It’s hard to beat its crispness, so good it is! It’s a clear winner when the best mic for voice acting is chosen.

grade: 4.2/5


 

 

Rode NTK

Rode NTK
Rode NTK

Those who need the accurate capturing should select the condenser, which is one of the best on the market. It doesn’t belong to the budget microphones as the model is rather costly but it’s worth the price.

grade: 4.1/5


 

 

Shure SM7B

Shure SM7B
Shure SM7B

Though the model is less expensive than the previous one, its performance is also fabulous. Many consider it the finest studio microphone. It’s one of the most brilliant devices when recording voice overs.

grade: 4.5/5


 

 

Sennheiser MKH416-P48U3

Sennheiser MKH416-P48U3
The best choice

Some consumers select this device exclusively for voice over as it’s one of the best in this respect. It captures the source ideally even with minimal sound treatment.

grade: 5.0/5


 

 

SE Electronics sE2200a

sE Electronics sE2200a II
sE Electronics sE2200a II

If you still think what is the best type of microphone for voice recording regard this option.

The consumers understand the importance of this equipment only after the purchase. It overthrows all other alternatives easily when used for the vocals and instruments. However, it’s the best for voice over work.

grade: 3.6/5


 

 

USB microphones under $200

The customers, who are not technically-savvy, or those who just start recording voice overs, are not interested in complicated and costly solutions. They are also not ready to acquire additional equipment to reach their goals. The mics with USB connection offer such opportunity for them. New interesting devices of this kind appeared on the market at reasonable price. The list given below includes the best USB microphones under $200. They are easy to use and ready for work out of the box. Let’s summarize what makes these models so popular:

  • Price affordability
  • Easy solution
  • Ready to use without delay
  • No set up complications
  • Plug in and play models do not require drivers to be installed
  • Compatibility with PC and most devices
  • Effortless conversion to digital format

 

Audio-Technica AT2020USB+

Audio-Technica AT2020USB PLUS
Audio-Technica AT2020USB+

This little smart condenser is directional. The user gets a long cord with it, which is about 3 meters long. Additionally, the person obtains an accurate desk tripod and protective case. It’s easy to set up. The sound is smooth and clear. The fast speech is reproduced accurately so reveal your voice over talents with this model! The vocal performance is less successful though. It only proves that this is the reporter’s mic.

grade: 4.6/5


 

 

Blue Yeti

Blue Microphones Yeti Pro
Blue Yeti

The mic is a bestseller and there is every reason for it. It’s great for streaming, podcasting and narration therefore this is one of the most favorite devices for vloggers, streamers, podcasters and other folks recording videos. The incredible mic with consistent sound is admired by amateurs and professional users. Its compatibility with almost any OS and device via USB port makes it one of the most widely used mics observed in multiple YouTube videos. It’s not only best USB mic used for recording. It enters the top of voice over microphones as the quality of performance is always superior when compared with other equipment available. Customers also like the variety of colors offered by manufacturer.

grade: 4.3/5


 

 

Blue Snowball iCE

Blue Snowball ICE
Blue Snowball

The model is an excellent choice for home studio recording. First of all, the device is very affordable and looks great for the money. The mic comes in two color variations: white and black. Both of them look fantastic and perform perfectly. But it’s mostly fun-to-use microphones. We would recommend other option for streaming as it picks up background noise easily. It can become the best USB mic for the room with special treatment or without surrounding noise.

grade: 4.3/5


 

 

Rode NT-USB

Rode NT-USB
Rode NT-USB

The device enters the top as the best USB devices for recording and one of the finest voice over microphones for customers. It’s a brilliant mic with awesome build quality and superb sound. However, its sensitivity creates problems at times so the owner should take measures to adjust it to the conditions of home studio recording. The device also includes the accessories necessary for recording without delay.

grade: 4.4/5


 

 

Low-cost XLR microphones

There are XLR microphones with different price tag. These solutions tend to be costlier opposing to the mics with USB output as such devices are often chosen by professional sound engineers and studio recording specialists. Such people are more demanding as a rule and ready to make additional investments which are also needed in this case. It’s easier to improve the sound with XLR device.

Making a choice the person should decide if he needs to choose among dynamic microphones or condensers? What’s the best microphone for voice recording?

Despite higher value of XLR options, there are some budget solutions offered to you below.

 

Harlan Hogan VO

Harlan Hogan VO
Harlan Hogan VO

People who earn on recording voice overs need the devices, which sound perfectly. This is what this mic is able to provide. First of all, the look of this mic is impressive! Though it’s not the main thing for voice over microphonesbut it’s always pleasant to use something exceptional that looks awesome. It should be the thing that is pleasant to hold in hands. However, when the sound is reproduced, it’ll also leave you in awe. It’s so smooth and flawless so it’s the best mic for voice recording. The XLR-port enables even further improvement of sound.

grade: 3.7/5


 

 

Rode NT1A

Rode NT1A Anniversary Vocal Condenser Microphone Package
Rode NT1A Anniversary Vocal Condenser Microphone Package

Made on the basis of famous studio microphone, the device doesn’t need to be presented. It’s known to all audiophiles who value high level of performance. The size of diaphragm affects all properties of sound – its volume, EQ and how clear it is. It’s big in this device, consequently, all characteristics mentioned are excellent and the sound is incredibly clean. Taking this into account, the price tag is rather affordable.

grade: 4.4/5


 

 

SE Electronics sE2200a

sE Electronics sE2200a II
sE Electronics sE2200a II

This is one more device with a large diaphragm ensuring high quality of sound. sE2200a is frequently used for recording voice overs. It’s one of the finest mics in this segment. The spider shockmount keeps the mic tightly but some consumers dislike the way it looks. Those who don’t mind such design can enjoy fantastic performance of cardioid condenser. It is liked much over microphones of other brands.

grade: 3.6/5


 

 

Dynamic microphones

Here are some advantages of these devices:

  • Those who do not have a place with special treatment should select dynamic mics for recording voice. These dynamic microphones are less prone to pick up all noise surrounding the source. These microphones for voice capturing should be held closely to the speaker’s mouth.
  • It’s also preferable to have such microphones for live performance for the reason mentioned above. It is able to suppress the ambient noise and this feature is rather helpful during live performance. Besides, the musicians prefer dynamic mics as they are more durable than, for instance, condensers, which are more fragile.
  • They are able to withstand loud volume longer and can manage plosives without problems.
  • The sound tends to be warmer when dynamic microphones are used.

Shure SM7B

Shure SM7B
Shure SM7B

It’s worth buying the item – the consumer doesn’t have to worry about the quality recording voice overs with it. SM7B is one of the most famous dynamic microphones. The mic is lightweight and compact. But what impresses most of all is its sound, therefore the device is recommended by the sound engineers. The specialists, actually, love it a lot. The quality of vocal recordings is superb. Therefore, it’s a studio microphone, which is acquired as one of the dynamic mics to complete the assortment. Dynamic microphones tend to pick up less ambient noise in comparison with condensers. This is very important when the consumers use the microphones for podcasting, narrations, vlogs etc.

grade: 4.5/5


Rode Procaster

 

Rode Procaster
Rode Procaster

Those who look for the exceptional device among the dynamic mics should try this model. It belongs to voice over microphones that deliver incredible sound. It has an excellent protective case, so it’s safe to store it. The device reproduces voice in clean and clear manner. There is no need to worry about the plosives as it deals easily with them. The collection of microphones for radio hosts often includes this model, which helps to create a beautiful radio channel voice.

grade: 4.7/5


 

 

Electro Voice RE-20

Electro Voice RE-20
Electro Voice RE-20

The advantages of the device over other dynamic mics: it’s versatile, helpful and features transparent sound. Even the vocalists select the device as it meets their strict requirements. Not much EQ is needed to create beautiful sound. It’s a good option among the microphones for voice acting. The sound is so full, warm and natural. Not all dynamic microphones are able to provide the sound close to it, so it enters the list of best voice over microphones.

grade: 4.7/5


 

 

Heil PR-40

Heil PR-40
Heil PR-40

It’s one of the ideal microphones for voice over work. People using the variety of mics, assure that it’s the best in terms of sound quality. Its sound it crisper and brighter than that of other dynamic mics. Those who need the device for deep best voice should purchase PR-40. So many people use these devices as professional microphones for recording of audio. Why not try it as well?

grade: 4.4/5


 

 

Mid-range condenser microphones

The consumers want to know which microphone is the best for recording voice, while the professionals have exact answers to the questions but not always are able to afford the items they want so much. Any person would be happy to get one of the condensers presented in the list below. It is worth noting that they are far from being cheap and belong to quite different group of mics. These are chic and more refined items, which suit ideally for studio work.

The consumers who love precision during reproduction of sound give preference to condensers. The dynamic microphones are not so accurate, in their opinion. Condensers beat other types of mics in a number of parameters such as sensitivity, clarity of transients and frequency range width.

 

CAD E-100S

CAD E-100S
CAD E-100S

The device is widely used as it’s very versatile. The consumers are able to do almost everything with it. Think of it when you need the voice over microphones for such projects. It markets itself as one of the professional microphones and seems to deserve the title. It’s worth pointing out richness of tones, which are not colorized at all – a great property for voice over microphones. With all its switches on the front, it also looks a reliable, serious item serving well for best voice performance. When tested on male and female vocals, it sounds smooth. The mic is devoid of noise that is usually the problem for condensers when recording voice and other sources. Like other popular voice over microphones, there’s some vintage feel about it.

grade: 4.3/5


 

Neumann TLM 102 MT

Neumann TLM-102
Neumann TLM-102

Those who need a well-balanced, accurate reproduction of sound select TLM102 MT, which is really sensational. It’s rather economical for the product of this brand but at the same time features a superb quality for voice over microphones. All voice over talents dream of having some Neumann at their disposal and this one would be a great choice that won’t cost you tons of money!

Being small-sized, the device is portable and lightweight. This feature enables flexibility of placement. It’s invaluable for being a general purpose mic and delivers everything it promises. Undoubtedly, it has technical edge over microphones also used for recording voice overs.

grade: 4.8/5


 

 

Rode NTK

Rode NTK
Rode NTK

The model creates new rules and standards for sound professionals. Therefore the product is highly praised as actually any product created by the brand. The tube mic is incredibly noiseless. Nothing interferes with perfect sound when the model is used for recording. The special construction of diaphragm affects the sounding. Its precious metal covering also contributes to it. Therefore these microphones for voice capturing provide warmer feel. The exterior of the device is stunning. It features beautiful finish and looks professional. You’ll never regret about the choice among other voice over microphones for voice acting projects.

grade: 4.1/5


 

 

Professional Microphones

It’s rather challenging to discover proper device, therefore some people just select professional mics thinking of them as the best on the market. This is definitely so but some models can be too sophisticated for amateurs. If not all arsenal of features is used, then there is no need to spend much money. Professional mics are more expensive, while more economical model can be more suitable. Dive deeper and read the guidance on purchase of voice over microphones. But people earning their living recording voice is a different issue. Professional gear is a must have for them. The models offered below belong to the finest among professional equipment.

 

Neumann TLM103

Neumann TLM 103
Neumann TLM 103

Those who belong to the pro-level circles are aware of staples. It’s one of them. It was the first company that developed the condenser after WWII and presented it to public. Many decades passed but the brand still produces the best microphones. The distinctive feature of Neumann mics is the sounding that’s impossible to imitate. Many companies tried to repeat it but failed. TLM103 is a unique model the consumer will definitely like. Used for studio recording as a rule, it’s rather overpriced to purchase it for fun. However, the audiophile will never regret about the choice.

grade: 4.4/5


 

Neumann U87

Neumann U87
Neumann U87

It’s fantastic studio microphone – any knowledgeable person accept it, even not having it in possession. Not any professional can afford its purchase. Nevertheless, all admire it. It is used for recording of musical performances, voice overs etc. in diverse recording situations. One should care about the treatment space – a usual condition for studio recording otherwise the mic picks up almost everything it hears. And believe me, it hears some things you don’t want to be captured.

The multidirectional pattern says about its universal character. The person just needs to switch the patterns depending upon the situation required. It belongs to the best microphones providing warm, rich tone and exceptional clarity. The person with a goal to enhance performance should consider the legendary U87 – the item that works wonders!

grade: 3.6/5


 

 

Sennheiser MKH416-P48U3

Sennheiser MKH416-P48U3
Our Recommendation

The device captures phenomenal sounding revealing all intricacies of voice and removing muddiness from it. It offers incredible sound-isolation not found in other devices!

The gear belongs to professional microphones used for recording indoors and outdoors. The model is of shotgun type – the ideal choice for background noise elimination. It’s incredible for work in the field. It’s often used by voice over talents in crowded places and the result is successful. Recording voice of the speaker it’s directed to, it cancels out all ambient noise, providing superb result.

grade: 5.0/5


 

 

Other must-haves for voice over recording

The common must haves for recording voice include the mic booms, shockmounts, tabletop stands. Those who use the mics with XLR port will need a special cable to connect the device and other must haves we’ve mentioned above in a section of XLR mics.

One should not forget about accessories thinking over microphones that suit voiceover tasks perfectly.

Headphones

You’ve probably seen before the singers wearing the headphones while recording their songs. Why is it so necessary to wear headphones during the recording procedure? This is done so that the performers could hear themselves and control the situation. It helps them to adjust the voice if something’s not right. The same is done for voice over work. The person monitors the sound to make sure that only voice is recorded and there is no any background noise we may not pay attention to but the mic picks it up and reproduces everything carefully. Those who doubt about the right pick, can pay attention to SonyMDR7506.

Microphone stands

The role of the accessory shouldn’t be diminished. It’s indispensable for any person performing onstage. The stand can have a stable base holding it. It should be adjusted to any height for the speaker or singer to perform. The person should feel convenient using this accessory. Simplicity and light weight of such things are valued most of all. It’s essential for device to be sturdy as well. Some stands are foldable. This kind of stand is highly appreciated by active musicians who love to move on the stage. Many performers are so passionate when performing. They love to release their energy on stage.

The device is necessary for studio recording as well.

Some consumers find the boom stands most convenient. These items enable adjustment of an angle along with height.

The choice of the accessory depends upon the situation. The person speaking or performing can either stand or sit. If the performer sits, it’s more convenient desk stand is the right pick. Alternatively, the person can use a studio arm.

Pop filters

Pop filters are necessary to obtain high quality recording without plosives. A pop filter protects the microphone and decreases the amount of popping and sibilant sounds or entirely removes them. When popping sounds are pronounced the air moves fast towards the mic and it deteriorates the quality of recording. The sound can be too annoying, so those who want to have flawless audio acquire pop filters for perfect result. Some pop filters are made of metals and others of nylon.

This accessory is not that expensive but contributes not only to better quality of audio but extends mic’s life. The pop filter performs protective function, protecting mic from performers’ saliva that produces damaging effect on the capsule.

Many dynamic devices are not vulnerable to moisture. Besides, being in a protective capsule and designed with a foamfilter they are protected well. Still external pop filter is excellent addition to home studio.

Shock mount

Some mics are sold with a shock mount, the others come without it. Why is it so important to have the one? This accessory is needed for prevention of vibration. The shock mount isolates the mic from the movement surrounding it. This helps to remove the handling noise. For instance, the spider shock mounts keep the mic in place with help of rubber bands, which absorb unwanted noises and vibration.

There are different types of mics and some of them vibrate more than others. You should make sure if you really need this accessory because it can be rather costly for some kind of mics. In case you do, it’s recommended to acquire it for voice over talents. The suspension device can protect the mic from rumbling sounds of the floor or desk.

Microphone preamps

This is an important element of studio recording for many. Preamps are needed to power up a weak electrical signal and make it stronger. Sometimes preamplifiers are built into audio interface. At present, mic preamps deliver more capabilities to user and contribute to flexibility as well in comparison with numerous interfaces.

Selecting the best preamp, pay attention to its

  • Price,
  • Number of channels,
  • Type of device,
  • Its ins and outs,
  • Additional features it offers.

Preamplifiers can have 1 or several channels depending on number of mics intended for use. It’s useful when the person performs music with the band and each member needs a preamp channel.

The type of preamp affects the result and shapes the tonal characteristics. For instance, tube preamps contribute to richer harmonics, while solidstate preamplifiers ‘digitalize’ it. Another alternative – a hybrid preamp that has the properties of the types described above, but the models providing clear performance are more expensive.

Focusrite ISA One can be a good option for consumers.

Audio interface

It’s sometimes called a sound card. It serves the connection goals, when different sources of sound should be connected to the computer. It’s needed to connect analog and digital device performing conversion from analog format to digital and vice versa.

The number of its inputs and outputs will depend upon the goal set. It would be great to have the device with at least a couple of inputs and outputs. But there can be up to 18 of them and even more. Much depends upon the intentions and plans.

XLR Cable

It’s needed to connect XLR type device to the computer. Such cables differ having different number of pins. The range starts from XLR3 to XLR7. XLR3 has three pins and it’s the most used cable.

Isolation filter

Isolation filter is an excellent solution helping to create a sound chamber for optimal recording. The voice over microphones for consumers will do much better with such equipment. Surrounding the mic from rear part and its sides, it keeps what’s being recorded from reverberating around the room leaving a light echo of the ambiance only. Most consumers are pleased with the effect provided by LyxProVRI-10 so you can try this option if it’s necessary.

Acoustic panels

Many people concentrate on purchase of microphones for their projects, but underestimate the importance of acoustics in the room. Acoustic panels help to enhance the sound recording. When the person arranges studio in a room with bare walls, problems can arise when capturing sound. The person doesn’t hear the result as it’s colored and not even.

The poor result is easily noticed even using the best voice over microphones for untreated space. Acoustic lightweight panels eliminate echo and work as sound absorbers, improving the clarity of your voice. When you hear the perfect result produced by studio microphone, this is not the merit of the device only but the combination of factors contributing to treatment of the room including acoustic panels.

People use the panels with different goals in mind. Some use them to sound proof the space without thinking about acoustic enhancement of the space. Others purchase acoustic panels for their home theatres. But our main task is to create the home studio and enhance the sound in it. The purpose determines the size of acoustic panels to be chosen. The type of sound the person is going to treat matters as well. Dealing with low-frequency sounds, the person should select the ones with 4’’ thickness. Apart from acoustic panels, acoustic corner traps should be used as well for properly treated space. This is a cost effective solution for trapping of low end and absorption of highs and mids.

It’s important to remember that treatment shouldn’t be a killer for reverberation. The goal is to make the room with neutral sound balance.

Portable recorder

Some people record directly to the computer, while others prefer to use portable recorder for that. Here are some reasons for this alternative:

  • These devices can substitute the microphones for recording;
  • Enable to hear the result through headphones;
  • Recorders are easy to use;
  • Provide connection with XLR microphones for users;
  • Provide additional functionality (suppresses noise, makes pauses conveniently etc).

Portable recorder is irreplaceable assistant for capturing on the move. Besides, it’s possible to store files on it and it provides power to mic. Zoom H6 is a proper alternative found on the market.

Studio monitors

These devices are necessary for sound engineers and other professional users. It helps to control the balance of sounds in a mix and the quality of performance. Studio monitors were made for correct reproduction of sound. This is an ideal acoustic system used to determine the genuine recording quality. The capability of flat frequency response makes it possible.

Studio monitors correct the mistakes made in a mix. YamahaHS7 is a brilliant choice for the money. High quality studio monitors cost from $300-500. When the pricetag exceeds $500, the person is able to purchase excellent studio monitor. There is no reason to pay over $1000 for high quality equipment. Save your money for something else!

Software

It’s wrong to think that there are no good free audio recording programs. Some software can help you create killer tracks totally free. All lovers of good sound are aware of Audacity that is compatible with any operating system. This is open-source piece of software that can handle many tasks easily. It is easy to use therefore even the beginner can cope with it.

For professional approach, try Adobe Audition CC developed for professionals. It’s a great option for creation audio effects and editing audio.

Conclusion

What microphone is best for recording voice? Much depends upon the person who chooses this activity. Does he buy the mic for home recording studio or wants to make a professional career? There are many voice over microphones on the market that provide incredible, brilliant result in this or that way. The difference between different variants may not even be noticed for non-savvy users but makes a huge difference for sound professionals who purchase all sorts of gear to make the sound flawless no matter what they do: some project that can actually be fulfilled with one of simplest voice over microphones or sophisticated recording of a band. As you see, most often it’s the matter of taste and professionalism.

What is the best microphone for recording voice over?
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