There are few things more annoying than recording what you think was a great track of audio, only to realize that it is littered with snaps, crackles, and pops all over the wav file.
What do you do?
Well here are some preventative measures along with a few remedies after the fact that should get you the final product you thought you had to begin with.
1. Drink lots of water!
Hydration is key in voiceover. Room temperature is best to bring about the least disruption to your vocal cords. I always have a bottle of water near the booth. I try to drink eight or more 12 oz bottles of water per day. I think that’s still below the recommended amount but, if I have a spare moment, I’m drinking water.
2. Warm Up Before You Work
Most activities need a warm-up of some kind. This includes using your voice, especially for professional purposes. I often hearken back to my old “Junior Theater” days for some easy vocal warmups.
Over-enunciate phrases like, “Just which witch went where” and “Mary had a little lamb,” dropping your jaw down as far as it will go for each word.
Tongue twisters like, “Three gray geese in the green grass grazing. Gray were the geese and green was the grazing.”
And, of course, the lip trill.
3. Wear good headphones and catch yourself in the act!
If my preemptive strikes don’t work, then usually I can catch myself in the act in real-time and correct on the fly using one of the techniques above.
My headphones: the Sennheiser HD 599 SE Around Ear Open Back Headphone work like a charm in keeping me honest.
Or sometimes, I just slap myself in the face. Yes, literally I do this. And it seems to work! Individual results may vary. I do not advocate violence toward oneself on this website.
4. When All Else Fails: Post-Production to the Rescue
This software has been a massive timesaver when you’re just not having the greatest day, or even when you are.
The mouth de-click plugin within this software wipes away many of those pesky mouth clicks like they never happened. It’s magic! And if mouth de-click doesn’t work than the regular de-click might do the trick. But the latter can be a little heavy-handed and distort your audio if you’re not careful.
You can also go in manually to your file and perform some surgery but that takes a lot of practice to do effectively and is probably its own topic for another time.