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voiceovers and shotgun mics


I'm thinking about getting a shotgun mic for my voiceover work. I currently have a BLUE Mouse mic but it's leaving out some of my lower end for documentary/narration.
I've heard shotguns can give the read a more 'b**sy' sound and that's what I'm looking for.
Can anyone recommend something OTHER than the Sennheiser 416 (too expensive)?
Audio-Technica AT835b any good?
Thanks for any ideas.
January 14, 2010 @07:23pm

Before resorting to purchasing a new mic, you may want to evaluate the way you're recording with your existing one. Music stands and table tops used to hold the script in place are a big source of comb-filtering which will make any mic sound thin. Changing the angle of either the mic or the stand or using a wire stand can dramatically improve the recording.
A shotgun can help during voice-overs since there's a bit more "reach" allowing you to place the microphone further away from the source of comb-filtering but because of the compromises built-in to shotguns, they're still not the ideal.
To your specific question I have used Sennheiser's K6/ME66 pair often and can highly recommend it as a shotgun. I rarely use it as a VO mic but it gets the job done when I need it. I prefer using my C414 or C1 for VO work.
Most VO studios use large diaphragm mics like the U87, C414/412, C12, etc...
As an aside, in studio/controlled video or film settings it's common to use small diaphragm microphones on boom or for VO like the Neumann KM184/185 or Sennheiser ME64 because they provide a more natural sound than shotguns.
January 14, 2010 @07:52pm

If you are looking for a darker heavier sound you can try a mic with a large diaphram. You might also try getting quite close to a mic for pronounced proximity effect.
January 15, 2010 @04:11am

I checked out the BLUE website for specs on my current mic. Couldn't find the answer there but IS the BLUE Mouse (my current mic) a large diaphragm?
Also, to 'jpleong'....My setup is a laptop on desk about 12 inches in front of my mic placement. I could take a picture and upload it here if that would help?
January 15, 2010 @06:10pm

just found out: BLUE Mouse IS a large diaphragm.
January 15, 2010 @06:22pm

Try your mic on a mic stand with no reflective surfaces around. If the mic sounds better than when it's on the table, you'll need to adjust your setup.
ps- are you doing any post-processing like compression or eq once you've recorded? Most VOs have some sort of treatment done to them.
January 15, 2010 @06:52pm

January 16, 2010 @10:45pm

I've used both the Rode NT1000 and the NT1-A for voice-over and by far I love the NT1-A for that low "movie trailer" sound. The NT1-A was recommended to me by a VO coach for my deep male voice.
January 18, 2010 @10:16pm

Bite the bullet and get a 416. You'll thank yourself time and time again for it. And it will hold it's value much better should you ever need to sell it. Aside from that, you'll sound much better because you'll always know it's the real thing hanging in front of you.
Really....do you want a real ponco or a Sears poncho?
January 22, 2010 @10:02pm

I wholeheartedly agree with mbvoxx. Yeah, I know $1100 seems like a lot to pay for a mic (although it's nothing compared to a vintage U47, if you can find one). But lookit, if you're going to be doing this for a living, why cut corners? There's nothing quite like the sound you get from "the Hollywood mic" (the MKH416). So just step up, fork over the dough, and get what the big boys use. There's a reason so many professional voice talents prefer this mic.
Honestly, I've been doing voice work for decades, and I've been producing radio commercials for much longer than that and working with the top VO guys in the country, and I can't name a single voice talent (who's any good) who uses a shotgun that ISN'T the MKH416.
Yeah, I know. It'll hurt a little at first spending that much on a mic. But in the long run, you won't be sorry. (And really, when you get right down to it and look at the various choices that the top VO guys in the biz have for mics, this one's not really that expensive in the overall scheme of things. I know guys who spent $6,000 on their mic.)
February 27, 2010 @04:01pm

electrovoice mic or an audix large diaphragm
March 1, 2010 @08:12pm