1 Minute Test - looking for feedback [OK]

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Voxandis
Posts: 19
Joined: July 2nd, 2018, 12:39 pm

Post by Voxandis » July 12th, 2018, 3:44 pm

My 1 Minute Test: https://librivox.org/uploads/tests/test_voxandis.mp3

I'm using Audacity, Windows 10, and a USB Mic (Blue Snowball).

Definitely looking for feedback on everything, including:
- volume
- plosives
- background noise
- anything else!

Thanks everyone.
:D I'm looking for feedback from any PL's on my recordings, especially on storytelling and character voices (but any feedback is welcome, I'm here to learn!). My recent contributions:

Fairytale: Tufty Riquet, 13:19 run time

Rapunzelina
LibriVox Admin Team
Posts: 6871
Joined: November 15th, 2011, 3:47 am

Post by Rapunzelina » July 13th, 2018, 12:53 am

Welcome to Librivox!

Your tech specs are correct, no plosives, background noise in acceptable levels if any! The volume is just a bit on the low side. Visually in Audacity, you should aim for the waveform to peak above the 0.5 mark, just not all the way up/down (to avoid clipping). You can either adjust the input volume before recording from the microphone slider or amplify after (or both). The visual hint can be enough, but you can also use the ReplayGain plug-in, to know by how much to amplify:
- Click this link,
http://forum.audacityteam.org/download/file.php?id=4685
and save the file to your computer - somewhere you can find it.
- Then go to the folder in which Audacity is installed (on a windows computer, it's in C:\Program Files (x86)\Audacity, on a Mac it will be something else) and open the Plug-Ins folder.
- Drag or copy the file you saved into the Plug-Ins folder.
- The next time you start up Audacity go to Effect/ReplayGain* and it'll tell you how much you can amplify your file.

*If you do not see the plugin (near the bottom of the Effect dropdown menu), then at the very top of the Effect menu click on Add/Remove Plugins. You may need to "enable" the plugin. Once enabled restart Audacity and look for the plugin in the Effect dropdown menu.
If you feel confident you can control your volume, then you're ready for recording! Browse the readers wanted forum for projects that interest you and have fun! :clap:
If you'd like to check a new recording with adjusted volume, feel free to upload and post here again. Or ask if there are any questions :)

Voxandis
Posts: 19
Joined: July 2nd, 2018, 12:39 pm

Post by Voxandis » July 13th, 2018, 10:46 am

Thanks for the feedback! My mic volume is already at 100%, any ideas on how to get it louder without having to amplify post-recording?

Also, any comments on:
1. Speed (I felt normal recording it but listening to it afterwards it sounds kind of fast.)
2. Expression (I dont want to bore readers!)
3. Enunciation?

Thoughts?
:D I'm looking for feedback from any PL's on my recordings, especially on storytelling and character voices (but any feedback is welcome, I'm here to learn!). My recent contributions:

Fairytale: Tufty Riquet, 13:19 run time

Rapunzelina
LibriVox Admin Team
Posts: 6871
Joined: November 15th, 2011, 3:47 am

Post by Rapunzelina » July 13th, 2018, 1:14 pm

On volume: also check in the Control Panel of your system for sounds and microphones. Maybe there's an extra slider for the microphone volumes in there, too. If those are also maxed up, then amplifying is the next best option. You are already quite close to the desired volume range, so don't worry about amplifying post-recording; it will need little amplification if any. It's mostly for consistency between files in group projects (where every reader's recording set-up may be different). I also think that when reading a more interesting text, we get carried away and read a bit louder without noticing anyway. :D
On speed: I also thought it was fast, but the text is so simple, how slowly can one read it?! You can try reading more slowly and see if you like the result.
I can't comment on expression! On one of my first solo projects I thought I did a very good job with expression in reading, but one of my honest friends thought completely otherwise :mrgreen: :mrgreen: So really, it might be a subjective thing or depending on personal preferences..
On enunciation: I found your reading very clear and easy to follow, even if it was a bit fast :)

Voxandis
Posts: 19
Joined: July 2nd, 2018, 12:39 pm

Post by Voxandis » July 13th, 2018, 2:01 pm

Thanks so much! You're so helpful and supportive. :9:
:D I'm looking for feedback from any PL's on my recordings, especially on storytelling and character voices (but any feedback is welcome, I'm here to learn!). My recent contributions:

Fairytale: Tufty Riquet, 13:19 run time

audiomike
Posts: 9
Joined: May 27th, 2016, 10:26 am
Location: Mid-Michigan

Post by audiomike » July 14th, 2018, 12:52 pm

Listen to your recording again, at a higher volume level if necessary, in a decent pair of headphones. Pay attention to your breathing. You don't start out too bad but half way through you speed up a little more and begin taking short rapid breaths as if you were anxious to get to the end. You need to be able to breathe normally while reading or you won't make it through two pages before running out of breath. If you tell yourself to breathe normally you will naturally slow down.

Also, if you want to hone your skills before jumping into the depths of LibriVox, you can try the following: Select a book that you would like to read. A classic is best. Record a chapter. Now find other recordings of the same book, preferably done by a professional, and listen to them. Make sure you record your version first. Compare your reading to theirs. Don't be disappointed, learn from it. What was their pace, enunciation, and expression compared to yours? Did you like it? Were you absorbed by the listening experience? That absorbed listener is what you want to shoot for in your reading. Not to copy someone else's style, but use it to build your own. Remember that everyone doesn't interpret situations and characterization the same way. You will develop your own unique way of telling a story. Again, don't copy style, but learn and create from it. Now record that chapter again, and again, and again.....

Voxandis
Posts: 19
Joined: July 2nd, 2018, 12:39 pm

Post by Voxandis » July 14th, 2018, 3:05 pm

Thanks for typing this up, this is really great feedback I'm going to try to work on. Any advice on how to mentally calm yourself down so you're not trying to anxiously reach the end? I stutter/fumble a lot even in regular conversation so I think that's why I get anxious to reach the end. The longer I take to finish the more likely I'll stumble up.

It's actually part of the reason why I wanted to get into audiobook reading, I want to get better at talking without fumbling.
:D I'm looking for feedback from any PL's on my recordings, especially on storytelling and character voices (but any feedback is welcome, I'm here to learn!). My recent contributions:

Fairytale: Tufty Riquet, 13:19 run time

audiomike
Posts: 9
Joined: May 27th, 2016, 10:26 am
Location: Mid-Michigan

Post by audiomike » July 15th, 2018, 11:03 am

Thank you.
It's okay, you're not the only one with that issue. Your brain is just running a lot faster than your voice can keep up with. Some people, when simply reading, voice each word in their head as if they were speaking it. Others just scan words and process the information. If you're of the later group, when you record, you will try to get your voice to keep up with the rate that your brain is processing the words. That won't work. So, we have to concentrate on slowing down the reading process itself. Don't try to force your voice to slow down. Slow down the driving force behind it and the voice will naturally sync up.
Keep in mind that when you are recording an audiobook you are not 'reading' the story; you're 'telling' the story; as if you were standing right in front of the listener 'telling' it. The difference is that when recording, you're not doing it from memory; you need to cheat a bit and read it. But the listener has to feel as if you were standing right there in front of them. Try recording a spooky short story and imagine yourself in a group sitting around a campfire late at night. How would you relate that story to everyone around you?
You'll also find that stories tend to dictate their own pace. They speed up and slow down at various points throughout and you have to learn to do the same. Don't get discouraged, it just takes practice.
Well, I've probably confused you enough for now. Let me know how it goes.

Voxandis
Posts: 19
Joined: July 2nd, 2018, 12:39 pm

Post by Voxandis » July 15th, 2018, 4:00 pm

This makes perfect sense, not confused at all! Thanks so much, I'm going to take all of this away and work on it. You're absolutely right in that I find my brain jumping ahead and it's like my mouth can't catch up. Thanks for the support.
:D I'm looking for feedback from any PL's on my recordings, especially on storytelling and character voices (but any feedback is welcome, I'm here to learn!). My recent contributions:

Fairytale: Tufty Riquet, 13:19 run time

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