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I unfortunately don't have a way of recording actual rats but I don't really want to buy a sample as I prefer to make sure all my work is my own. I am going to experiment with my own voice by chaning the pitch and speed of it and see if I get close.

Does anyone have a better way of creating them? Or just any plugin recommendations for making my voice sound like them?

Thank you.

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Sounds like you're on the right track! Using your voice is a great way to achieve this. If you're able to record little kids doing it, all the better since their voices will be able to reach much higher registers than yours without as much processing.

In reality, rats aren't super squeaky like they are in the movies. ☺ They're more sniffy and scamper-y. You may want to try recordings of puppy litters or other infant animals? Guinea pigs? Hampsters?

Another thing to try is pet toys that squeak. Depending on the props you choose you can get a lot of variety and different expressions depending on your performance.

Re. plugins, SoundToys Crystallizer is a good plugin to experiment with this, as is Little Alterboy.

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There's the sound that the rat makes, and there's also the sounds that occur when the rats interact with the outside world.

Jay has covered the primary rat sounds nicely, but also consider secondary sounds, like rat feet/claws scurrying across a varnished wooden floor for instance.

Also, the sound you will want to hear will depend entirely on the perspective of the images you are looking at. For instance, an extra close up shot of a rat face will require sniffing and maybe some mouth articulations and light squeaks, although you wouldn't hear the sniffing or breathing on a wide shot.

Also consider the tension of the scene. A rat running to save it's life is going to make a different sound to one that is simply foraging for food.

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Have you checked freesound.org? That's my first stop when looking for sound effects. I find that having an existing sound, even for reference makes the job much easier. Freesound content is Mostly CC-BY so you need to credit the creator.

freesound.org search for rat

  • Advice. Read the entire question, not just the title. – Mark Jun 24 at 9:00
  • Using existing sounds, even just as a reference or as a basis for creating new ones is usually the most efficient way to do it. I stick by the advice I gave. – stib Jun 25 at 1:48
  • If that was your intention, then I would recommend you clarify that in your answer. – Mark Jun 26 at 12:06

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