Greetings ! ,

It's a question that has passed my mind for a while when recording or not. Does the position matter?

Which one do you prefer? Sitting? or Standing? Do you think it makes a difference?

Would love to hear from ya.


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I'm a firm believer that most voice talent will have a better performance when standing. There are two reasons for this. First, a seated position will often compress the diaphragm, which can affect breath support. Also a seated position will limit the amount of physical movement possible. Physicality during a voiceover performance is essential to creating an authentic and compelling character (and ALL voiceover is about creating character.) However, there are some occasions when a seated position will be more functional, as in recording a very long session or when it is necessary to operate a computer when recording a long series of short VO tracks. In my book and in our workshops, we recommend standing to record whenever possible, primarily because physical movement is less constricted and more natural, thus resulting in a more natural performance.

Another point regarding position during a performance is in regards to how the voice talent positions the microphone in relation to their mouth. A common myth is that it is necessary to speak directly into the microphone. Placing the microphone directly in front of the mouth causes several potential problems: 1) the view of the script can be blocked and 2) the recording may be susceptible to pops and increased mouth noise. The reality of microphone physics is that the microphone doesn't really care where it is in relation to your mouth. 4" directly in front of your mouth will sound exactly like 4" off to the side. Sound waves exit your mouth omni-directionally and placing the mic to one side or the other, or even above and aimed slightly down toward your mouth, will generally result in improved recordings. Microphone placement can also be used to minimize computer fan noise simply by positioning a Cardioid mic so the back of the mic is facing the noise source. This won't completely eliminate the noise, but it can reduce it slightly.

James R. Alburger
Thank you so much for sharing that!
I agree with James that, for the most part, standing is the ideal posture.

That said, you may find ways to make standing or sitting work to your advantage, depending on what type of script you're reading and how you intend to read it.

For instance, a high energy script will definitely, always have me standing. There's so much physicality that comes into a high energy script that you'll tend to deflate it by sitting, thus constricting your performance.

However, for educational or even conversational reads, sometimes, I find I prefer sitting. I feel more grounded, more 1-on-1.

Ideally, you should experiment for yourself. Try the same script standing, then sitting. Then another script sitting, then standing. See if you have any tendencies one way or the other, and thus tailor your own position to the script you have.

The same question can be posed with regard to wearing headphones or not while recording. For instance, I have an easier time doing commercials and "conversational" without cans, but prefer cans for narration, promo or trailer.

So mess around. Take the time to experiment.

Lastly, with regard to microphones, if you happen to be using a super-cardiod (aka shotgun) mic, just make sure your voice "passes through" where the mic points. That is, think of the end of the shotgun mic as a laser pointing a beam of light directly out of it, and place you and your mic in such a way that your voice passes through that imaginary beam. Many people point the shotgun at their chest, also, to get a little extra bass.

Have fun!

Hi Izak.

IMHO stance definitely does matter.

I find it easier to use my abdomen to generate good vocals when I am standing but I can produce the goods when I am sitting just so long as I am not slouching in or on the seat.
Like James said it is all about compressing the diaphragm!




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