Which audio editing software should you use? Digital Audio Workstations (DAWs) bring all the components of mixing consoles to software. How do you get the most out of your DAW to make the best impression on listeners in the three to five seconds you have to grab them? Anne and VO Tech Guru Tim Tippets talk about Twisted Wave, Adobe Audition, Pro Tools, and Audacity, and how not all DAWs are created equal. Everything from your microphone to your interface to your booth … and yes … your DAW can impact how “expensive” you sound. Get valuable tips on the importance of post-production capabilities and how to finish your audio like a #VOBOSS
Quick Concepts from Today’s Episode
Audio Recording Software is also known as a DAW (Digital Audio Workstation)
A DAW brings everything you’d otherwise have on a mixing console in a digital form
All DAWs record at the same level of quality
Most VO Talent only need to record and edit in mono in one track
Advanced programs like “Pro Tools” or “Audition” can be overwhelming for talent who aren’t audio engineers
Twisted Wave was created specifically for voiceover, so it’s very capable, though stripped down to the essentials
Adobe Audition is great for users who want to mix final audio with fewer steps
Audacity is open-source software, which means that a collective of users manipulates the software and puts it out there for the next version
If all you need to do is record your audio (which is unusual) and send it in raw, then you don’t need to pay for a DAW
A freeware DAW will not have the same capability and ease of use as something that you pay for
If you’re using a specific DAW, and you’re successful, do not switch your DAW
With DAWs you can both enhance and subtract from your audio
Most responsible audio editing is about subtracting and imitating mic control
Anything you can do to make your audio sound more expensive, then that’s a smart move
You have 3 to 5 seconds to make an impression on whoever is listening to you, use it to your advantage
Referenced in this Episode
Direct links to things we brought up ++
Check out Tim Tippet’s Recommended Software
Learn more about Adobe Audition
Check out Anne’s Favorite DAW: Twisted Wave
Find out more about Audacity
Recorded in ipDTL
Full Episode Transcript
>> It’s time to take your business to the next level, the BOSS level! These are the premiere Business Owner Strategies and Successes being utilized by the industry’s top talent today. Rock your business like a boss, a VO BOSS! Now let’s welcome your host, Anne Ganguzza.
Anne: Hey everyone, welcome to the VO BOSS podcast. I’m your host, Anne Ganguzza, along with the one and only VO Tech Guru, audio engineer extraordinaire, Mr. Tim Tippets. Hey Tim!
Tim: Hello, how are you, Anne?
Anne: I’m doing good. So Tim, I got a question for ya.
Anne: [laughs] Well, I’m quite sure that you’re gonna be able to answer this, but —
Tim: Well, we’ll see.
Anne: — the other day, I had a student, and actually a lot, a lot of times I have students who are new to the industry. And they are always asking me about equipment, and I know people ask you about that, you know, all the time.
Anne: But this one specifically was asking me about what type of audio editing software do I use? And I know that there are tons of possibilities out there — I have my personal favorite — also known as the DAW. But I thought I would ask you to maybe have a conversation about, you know, what things do we need to know about our DAWs and what’s important?
Tim: Alright, well DAW, first of all, stands for Digital Audio Workstation. So that’s just essentially a way of saying you’re bringing in everything that you would otherwise have on a mixing console into a software version. Right? So for instance, what is it that you use?
Anne: Well, I have a love affair with Twisted Wave.
Tim: Ok, and why do you have a love affair —
Tim: Why do you have a love affair with Twisted Wave? What is it about it?
Anne: Well, for me, I started off a long time ago using ProTools, because that’s all there was kind of back in the — well, I shouldn’t say that. I’m sure there were other editing softwares, but in voiceover that was kind of what people were using, or what I was told to use. And so when I bought my equipment at the time, it came with a version of ProTools Lite. And I learned to use that, and I just, for me it was like complex [laughs]. And it seemed to be like a lot of stuff that I needed to know just to put out one track.
Anne: And it kind of made me a little bit crazy because it also had problems like agreeing to be on the particular — I bought a specific Windows laptop, and it didn’t work, right? The hardware-software combination didn’t work right. And then ultimately I ended up getting a Mac and graduated to Twisted Wave, which for me it was a complete just — it was lovely because it was just simple. And for me, because I didn’t want to become an audio engineer — I just wanted to know what I needed to know to get my audio out, you know, good quality, to my clients — that seemed to be the perfect solution for me.
Tim: Sure. Well, Twisted Wave is made specifically for Mac, right, and it’s also made speci — at least at this time. And they also have it on iPad and iPhone.
Tim: Right? For people who may not know that. You can’t get to all of the effects on the iPad and iPhone the way that you can on a desktop.
Tim: But regardless though, that is something that you’ve used in the past —
Anne: For years.
Tim: Yeah, migrating from ProTools, and ProTools is a multitrack DAW.
Tim: Ok, again Digital Audio Workstation, ok, or you know AKA recording software. So when you were using ProTools, you were only using one track out of a potential —
Tim: — gazillion. Right?
Anne: Correct. Well, once in a while, I used two, if I was doing any sort of like — I did some on-hold stuff, where I would put some music under. But it was not my — it was not something that I thought that I was going to be doing on a daily basis, that’s for sure.
Tim: Right, so you thought you’d be mixing the audio and then sending it in?
Anne: Well —
Tim: Or were you just doing it to practice, or what did that look like?
Anne: No, I just did it — I did do it for a couple of clients back in the day.
Tim: Oh, ok.
Anne: Now it’s, you know, and it’s not the sort of thing that I really offer. I kind of outsource it, just because it’s not like my forte. I would much rather give that sort of work to an audio editor, you know, and then just be done with my part, which would be recording the vocal.
Tim: Ok, well, a lot of it comes down to that, right, because if you are mixing in multitrack, and you are actually mixing music along with voiceover, then it makes sense to have a multitrack DAW.
Tim: Right? Or again recording software. But the thing is, is most of us as voiceover just need one track, you know, one mono track. That’s actually something I’d like to throw in right now.
Anne: That’s a really good point. [laughs]
Tim: Yeah, a lot of people are recording in stereo. You don’t need to do that. Mono’s fine. It’s going to be double the size and there are a lot of reasons behind that. We can go into it at some other time, but for right now, just record in mono, send your stuff in, you’re good to go. But typically as voiceovers, we’re not going to be sending in a music bed —
Tim: — with our voiceover. Ok? So Twisted Wave is software that was created specifically for voiceover, and that’s it. And so as a result of that, it’s very stripped down. It’s very capable, don’t get me wrong.