With Purch ramping up video production for 2016, we found ourselves recording voice-over work. We purchased the fantastic Yeti Blue microphone and are very pleased with the quality of the recordings. However, when recording, our offices do not necessarily lend themselves to capturing solid audio. Brick and glass walls, very high ceilings, and any ambient office chatter finds it’s way into the tracks.
In order to contain the human voice and block external noise, we built this cheap fix. Based on the full-size vocal booth approach of recording studios, our version sits perfectly on a desktop.
Listen to the audio file attached to this post to hear the difference. The difference is easily noticeable.
- @ :12 mic in the "vocal booth"
- @ :36 mic outside the "vocal booth"
Building the Desktop Vocal Booth
- Plastic Storage Box. 12 gal., measuring 19.5” L by 15” W by 137/8” H. With handles. (Target $4.99-$5.99)
- Foam Mattress Topper, Twin Size, 1.5” Thick (Target $14.99)
- Velcro Picture Hanging Strips, 12 pack (OfficeMax $8.99)
- Styrofoam, .5” thick (Randomly found this)
Beginning with the Styrofoam, I wanted to add a little extra soundproofing at the “back” of the box, which would be the bottom. I also added a layer on one of the long sides, intending the box would sit horizontally. However, during sound testing it was discovered better recordings are achieved when the box sits vertically. So now one side of the box has extra soundproofing!
I cut the Styrofoam pieces to fit the box, which by the way, makes a total mess. Then, measuring out a piece of the foam mattress topper, I wanted it to wrap around three of the sides in one total piece. After affixing this piece with the stickable Velcro strips, I cut the top and bottom foam mattress pieces and affixed those using the same method. I made sure to add an extra half inch for the foam mattress material when cutting, to ensure filling out any gaps.
The nice thing about using a plastic storage box, especially with handles, for a desktop vocal booth is that you can store and carry your microphone and anything else you may need for recording.