Do you want to sound like a pro? Then it’s time to get your mic sounding better. Whether you’re recording voice-overs, podcasts or music, the quality of your microphone is incredibly important. In this article, we’ll teach you how to make your mic sound as good as possible by teaching you factors that affect its performance and some tips on how to optimize settings for the best possible audio experience. We’ll also talk about fixes that can help when things go wrong, static on a mic and other issues.
Just to be clear at the beginning, there is no magic device or tool that will make you a low-cost microphone that sounds like professional ones. Luckily there is a possibility that with a few tips you can get the most out of your microphone. By default, your microphone will only sound “ok” and before you start using it frequently you should check a few things to know for sure that the microphone gives you the best it can.
Other audio equipment for great mic audio
Yes, the microphone is the most important subject in this story, but many other factors in the chain will affect the result – audio recording. Audio interface, if any of its components are defective, even if its drivers are not properly set or installed, will affect the quality of your recordings.
Input jacks, on your audio interface or mic, if faulty will also affect your final sound. A low-quality microphone cable is one of the crucial things if you want to insert some unnecessary noise into your recording.
If you’re using a good microphone, make sure it has high-quality cables to give your voice clarity and volume. For example, if you are recording with an XLR mic, use a proper XLR audio interface (and such) for best results.
If you use a mic stand, make sure it doesn’t scratch the table or anything like that because it could create unwanted noise
The boom arm can also be used in this situation as well. Once you have determined that everything is in good and in place, you can move on to the next step.
Mic settings for voice
If you don’t set your microphone input level on your pc, all the previous facts mentioned are irrelevant. You need to know that there is no universal microphone level. Each setting depends on the model of the audio interface and mic itself. Some microphones have a gain setting knob on them.
These are usually USB mics. Some audio interfaces, such as Audient EVO4 or 8, have a really cool feature like “autogain” which assists you in setting the proper input volume. In any case, whatever your audio interface is, make sure you speak normally into your microphone while setting input gain to the amount where your voice won’t be too low in volume or clip.
Check the microphone gain setting in your recording software as well, so make sure everything is on the proper level. You can also put a limiter on the master channel, just in case. It will prevent audio from clipping. You might want to check my other post about microphone mixer settings.
Recording from microphones without background noise
Not all can afford a recording studio, or at least a decent home studio. But be sure you can make some great recordings yourself by following some crucial tips. Make sure the room you are recording in is acoustically treated.
If your room is empty, with flat walls you will have too much ambient reverb in your recording, and that won’t sound good. The better the room is treated, the better recording you will have at the start. You don’t need to buy expensive acoustic panels, you can make them yourself, or just make sure you have enough objects in your room, especially curtains.
To reduce unwanted background noise on your recordings, try to find and fix the source of the problem. Sometimes it’s better to take a minute or two in advance rather than trying to fix something later.
More noise reduction tips
We can improve sound quality a bit with few tips. Setting up a low-cut (high-pass filter) to block unnecessary noise on a source around 100 Hz will improve the audio for vocalists.
The same goes for the low pass filter, which you can set to 16khz, which can reject white noise. Additionally playing with EQ can be really helpful when making your voice sound way better.
Other factors that affect your voice quality: the room you’re recording in, environmental noise like air conditioning or outside traffic. You want to make sure it is as quiet as possible while recording because if not then later on you may have difficulty trying to eliminate these sounds with additional tools and this will take up precious time.
Blue Yeti background noise problems
There are a number of things you can do to get rid of background noise on Blue Yeti. You should check settings, drivers up to date, reduce gain or attached a pop screen.
Frank Edwards is the founder and owner of churchsoundtips.com and has over 10 years experience running sound in his local church.