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  1. This is my guide for getting started with voice acting. It has some information on microphones, recording environment and software. All prices are US Dollars and are listed for comparison purposes only. Microphones Professional - I'm not qualified to comment. Looking at $250 - $5000. Mid Level - USB mics are the best option since they have their own preamplifier and an analog-to-digital converter (A/D converter). The microphones listed below are all condenser mics, which are ideal for low to medium level sound sources, like you would have with voice acting. Dynamic microphones typically have a limited frequency response, so they are more suited to live vocals (singing) and loud guitar amps. Having said that, there are some dynamic mics that are suitable for voice over work and I list one below. USB Condenser Microphones Blue Yeti $129 - $150 Audio Technica AT2020 $100 - $169 Samson CO1U $80 - $130 Samson Meteor $60 - $70 Blue Snowball $50 - $70 CAD U37 $50 - $70 USB Dynamic Microphones Samson Q1U $50 Headset Microphones Headset microphones are really only suited for chatting on Skype or chatting with your friends while playing games. They just don't have the range to reproduce your voice accurately. You'll find that normal talking is fine, but as soon as you need to inject some emotion into your acting, your poor mic will be overloaded and you'll get clipping. You'll also find that your voice just isn't all the clear - it will have a muddy quality to it. I have heard some recordings from headset mics that have surprised me, but I usually have to amplify the recordings because the gain just isn't high enough and once I do that, the recording is pretty noisy. Pop Filters In addition to a microphone, you'll need a pop filter. Condenser mics are very sensitive, so they'll pick up sibilant and plosive sounds from S's and P's. A pop filter will prevent these issues. I've had to ask many an actor to redo their recordings due to the hissing sound of S's and the popping of P's. Pop filters also help reduce the noise of your breathing. Microphone Settings If your microphone has noise reduction or automatic gain control (AGC), disable those settings. If there is a quality setting, set to the highest. If it's labelled as CD or DVD quality, set it to DVD. Recording Environment It's extremely important that your recording environment be as quiet as possible, with no effects from the room like echo. Using a laptop to record is usually a better option because the fans are quieter. If the room you're recording in echoes, then hanging drapes or blankets on the walls may help. There are even acoustic sound blankets and wall panels available if you can afford to outfit your room with them. Another option is an Isolation or Reflection Filter. They can be pricey and are mounted on the microphone stand. I did find some nice desktop microphone stands that including a reflection filter for about $80 USD. Removing noise from a recording will alter the recording, sometimes damaging it to the point where it's unusable, so it's vital to set yourself up with a good recording environment if you wish to pursue voice acting work. Software Fortunately you don't need to shell out a bunch of cash for recording software. You can get started with Audacity just fine and if this turns into a serious undertaking, then you can upgrade to one of the professional editing options. Audacity - free Goldwave - free up to 2500 commands, then you must purchase a license. $19/yr or $59 lifetime. Goldwave has a few more features than Audacity, but I'm not as familiar with it. Adobe Audition CS6 - $350. Lots more features than Audacity. Sound Forge 10 - $500. Cubase 7 - $500.
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