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I am planning to do video podcast lessons, similar to CGP Grey production but on a different topic. What amazes me in CGP Grey is the quality and clarity of the voice.

I am sure there are different factors contributing to the final result

  1. Initially good voice
  2. Good microphone
  3. Postproduction tricks

As far as I was able to gather about the last two points, he uses a Rode Podcaster, and Final Cut Pro X. I am planning to buy the same equipment. For the first point I personally start with a big disadvantage, as my voice is very nasal. I know some tips from a singer friend of mine, but I doubt I can make it better.

My question is: given the above HW/SW makeup, how does one improve a nasal voice to have the best possible quality? Microphone setup and positioning, magic FCP options, filtering, special software to add to the mix?

Please keep into account I am completely clueless about the topic.

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2 Answers

Agreeing with AJ Henderson, getting your vocal performance in a better place would be key.

You can also look into audio plugins like iZotope Nectar, which is great all in one plugin for working with vocals. It can help emphasize the lower end of your voice, tame and compress the nasal-y mids, add some harmonic distortion, as well as reverb.

http://www.izotope.com/products/audio/nectar/

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Hardware and software isn't going to make a lot of difference. There is a saying crap in - crap out. Your best bet is to work on vocal lessons to address nasal issues. Nasal issues are fully avoidable by learning to use your diaphragm for speaking and learning how to enunciate clearly.

You can't change the tone of voice without the quality going and/or sounding unnatural after the fact since the audio has to be synthesised to adjust frequency without adjusting the speed of playback. You can use an EQ to make it sound more clear and less muddy, but it won't actually change the tone.

Good audio equipment simply captures what is actually happening clearly without noise. Software simply tunes the sound to accentuate what is already there. You can use tricks like frequency shifting and reverb to try and make a bad sound sound better, but it will still be a bad sound or at best mediocre.

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