Getting a broadcast ready voice

Getting a broadcast ready voice


I’m seriously thinking about making a podcast for absolute beginners and bedroom engineers. I’m still a good 6-9 months from being ready with the first few episodes, but I’m looking for some solid advice here.

On my YouTube channels, I record my voice clean and EQ the low end out, and have it “mobile” friendly. I know that most people watch my videos on their phones and tablets.

For the podcast I would love that FM style voice. My voice is deep-ish - not James Earl Jones great but it’s not offensive.

So I’m looking for good advice on how to get that broadcast ready voice. How do I remove that background noise that seems to be on my voice recordings? What kind of compression / EQ / limiting do I need? It’s a world apart from mixing vocals into a song. There’s no drums or bass or guitar to EQ around. Just my voice and nothing else!


These articles may be helpful:


Thanks very much for the links - really appreciate it.



Run the Izotope de-noiser on it.

Any stock EQ, pay attention to 80, 250, 400-500 and 2-3k. Try not to have to cut more than 3db. For compression, 3 or 4 to 1, 5 attack, and 50 release is a common go-to set-it-and-forget-it. For gates, I’ve been using this stock waves preset for years:

For limiting, my go-to is the Izotope - IRC4 - running in fast-transient mode.

I pretty much stick to Waves and Izotope for metering also.

The trick to doing broadcast VO, dialogue editing, ADR, etc… is to have the discipline NOT to try and eq and compress. No room processing, no transient design, no vocal rider, no verbs, no saturation. You want the dryest most organic thing you can possibly achieve. Think of your job to mute channels and move faders. That’s all.


What kind of mic are you using for the voice work?


I’m using a Rode NT2A, into a Behringer U-Phoria interface.


Not that you want to throw more money at it, but rather than throwing plugins at it to clean it up, you may want to consider using a dynamic mic instead of a condenser mic. SM7B or SM57 for example. They are a lot less sensitive and will take a lot of the room/background noise out of the equation.


I think proximity can be an issue for an SM57. The 7B has a little more give there but its about 3x the cost. If I were doing VO for the particular application @madpsychot mentioned in the OP, it would come down to how much noise I was up against. Chris Lord Alge and Dave Pensado use clip on mics. If I had to do this stuff I’d use my Shure Beta 53 because I don’t give a rip how it looks and I don’t ever want to have to think about where it is. Furthermore, it has an ideal proximity rejection and one shot from cmd+U (strip silence) could take care of an entire hours worth of editing monitor bleed out.