How does one become one of those movie trailer guys?
July 3, 2017 9:54 AM   Subscribe

I have a friend who is interested in getting into voice over work. What does he need to do to get into the business?

Andrew has a very resonant, radio-announcer type voice, is good at mimicry and doing funny voices, and has an ear for accents. On two or three occasions he's been approached when out in public by people in the industry who had happened to overhear him speak and who gave him their cards and told him he had the voice for such work, but it happened some years back and he no longer has their contact information.

How should Andrew go about getting into this line of work? He's in his forties, lives in Toronto, and has very little money.
posted by orange swan to Media & Arts (5 answers total) 13 users marked this as a favorite
There are related links at the bottom of this web page for a Toronto voice over studio...
posted by Seboshin at 10:59 AM on July 3, 2017

posted by MexicanYenta at 11:53 AM on July 3, 2017

First he needs a good quality condenser microphone. The Yeti Pro is pretty much the best quality for lowest cost microphone currently on the market. The cheaper Yeti Blue is not good enough, and yes, it does matter. That is the most expensive up-front cost. He also needs a pop filter to put in front of the microphone, those are cheap and pretty much any of them will work fine.

Second he needs an appropriate place to record. Very little voiceover work is done at the client's studio anymore, about 90% of paid work happens from home studios and is booked via services like His recording space needs to be quiet, and accoustically appropriate. That means lots of soft surfaces to minimize or eliminate echo and "boom". You can find a billion different videos on YouTube on how to create a good recording space in your home. The good news is, it can be done cheaply and still have high quality sound.

For software, I recommend Audacity. It is free, and is available for both Mac and PC. Again there are plenty of tutorials on how to use it.

The next step is to start recording and getting used to the setup. Realistically it takes months of practice to get a natural-sounding voice and to get used to how to use the microphone and software well. Just use any ad copy you can find, and read it.

Regarding Voice123 - they are absolutely legit, and they do book plenty of real work. Their free plan will get you exactly nowhere, due to its limitations. The paid plan is usually $395 per year. The good news is, they usually have a sale around two times per year where they cut the membership price in half. So what you want to do is get through all those first steps, and keep an eye out for one of their sales. Theoretically, by the time the sale comes around you already have built up some good experience through practice.

Finally, you almost certainly need a demo to post in your profile. Working professionals can obviously build a demo out of their existing work, but for someone new to the profession you need to pay someone to create a demo for you. Prices and quality vary wildly, so buyer beware. And again, don't waste the money on it until you already have the equipment, space, and practice under your belt.

If you were in the Central Florida area, I would highly recommend Dan Wach's Real World Voice Over Seminar. It is absolutely worth every penny, and basically tells you everything I just said except in much more detail and with coaching and follow-up. You might look for a similar seminar in your area. You might even try contacting Dan through his website and see if he has any recommendations in your area. He is very nice, and very knowledgeable.

Good luck!
posted by Lokheed at 10:26 AM on July 4, 2017 [5 favorites]

Tangentially, this might be entertaining:

In A World
posted by intermod at 7:51 PM on July 4, 2017

Ha! I only just noticed that I linked to a Doctor Who youtube video instead of a Yeti Pro amazon link. Here is the correct link. In the meantime, I hope you enjoyed the video of the Third Doctor taking a shower.
posted by Lokheed at 3:49 PM on July 5, 2017 [1 favorite]

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