BUILDING A VOICEOVER SETUP
Unless you have the privilege of going into a professional studio on your clients’ dime (which is increasingly rare these days), you’re going to need some way to record yourself. Your voiceover setup can be as streamlined or well-equipped as your budget allows, but even your phone is a great place to start.
“I know people who have sent in auditions from their phone, driving on the 405, and they’ve booked the gig,” Mullins says. “That’s an anomaly, but it can happen.”
Of course, you’ll need an app or software to record with, as well. Mullins recommends Apogee MetaRecorderfor iOS recording and Logic Pro for Mac users. PC users should look into Reaper or Pro Tools.
Besides the software, the first real piece of gear you’ll want to invest in is a USB microphone. Since they are easy to use and don’t require any additional equipment (aside from a computer and headphones), USB mics are an excellent option for beginning voice actors.
“With the Apogee MiC series, whether it’s the HypeMiC or the MiC+, you’re getting a huge bang for your buck,” relates Mullins. “The HypeMiC already comes with onboard compression, which can help your file just sound a bit better coming straight out of it. So if you’re just starting out, that’s the thing to do. You don’t necessarily need an interface, you can just go direct USB into Logic or TwistedWave, into your phone or your computer. It’s the most versatile thing to buy.”
When you’re ready to expand your setup, the next logical step is an XLR microphone. Instead of connecting directly to your computer, XLR microphones require something called an audio interface to amplify the signal, feed it to your computer and provide high-quality playback. This type of setup has numerous advantages, including the ability to switch between different microphones and connect studio monitors for playback.
“To this day, I use Logic and Apogee interfaces,” says Mullins. “When I’m traveling, I have the Apogee ONE, and my primary rig that I use every single day for local and national stuff is the Apogee Duet. That is going to give you really high quality that doesn’t break even the thousand-dollar barrier, which is fantastic because when you’re looking at interfaces, they can get wildly expensive real fast.”