Interviewing yourself / switching channels from one mic

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Interviewing yourself / switching channels from one mic

Permanent link to this post Posted by Geekquilibrium » Mon Oct 09, 2017 8:55 pm

I have an idea for a podcast I want to do that would be a character-based comedy (Think - "Hello from the Magic Tavern" type of format) but at times I would want to play the interviewee character myself so I would be in essence interviewing myself. I think the best effect for this would be left channel "host", right channel "character".

My question is this: Is there a way to select which channel I record to into WHILE recording from one mic via a shortcut or will I have to record all into one track/channel and then manually cut/paste into the other track/channel?

Thank you for your time.
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Re: Interviewing yourself / switching channels from one mic

Permanent link to this post Posted by kozikowski » Mon Oct 09, 2017 10:42 pm

You can use Overdubbing. Normally, you would record a backing track, maybe drums and bass and then play that back while you record the guitar and them play all that back while you sang.....etc.

http://manual.audacityteam.org/man/tuto ... rdubs.html


Audacity will pile up all the different tracks one above the other as you record them so you can apply corrections, filters and effects to each one as needed. Audacity will either render a mix right there on the edit window (Tracks > Mix and Render to a New Track.), or just File > Export a sound file and Audacity will mix everything together into one show file.

Avoid MP3 until you get to your final for posting or personal music device. WAV for everything including archive for when you become rich and famous. MP3 doesn't edit well.

Is the show scripted? If it is, you might be able to pull this off without too many edits. If it's not, you'll have an interesting time keeping the timing right. Editing a natural two-person conversation is not for the easily frightened.

One other caution. In overdubbing, the machine has to play the backing track absolutely perfectly correctly and record your new work also absolutely, perfectly correctly. If there's anything slowing your machine down for any reason, the session may start to stutter, pause, tick and pop.

Let us know how it goes.

Koz
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Re: Interviewing yourself / switching channels from one mic

Permanent link to this post Posted by Geekquilibrium » Tue Oct 10, 2017 12:48 am

Thank you. I will give it a shot.
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Re: Interviewing yourself / switching channels from one mic

Permanent link to this post Posted by kozikowski » Tue Oct 10, 2017 10:17 am

One thing that can really sell the effect is use two different microphones for the two performers and you can do it with one microphone. Directional microphones have proximity effect where your voice changes as you get closer and further away. I once played two different people by doing that and a little acting. What can also sell the effect is to occasionally talk over each other. That's the "finishing each other's sentences" thing.

Left and Right switching is not recommended. That's terrifically disorienting especially on headphones. When one person speaks it sounds like they're standing right next to you instead of in front as performance.

Even in full surround, effects driven movies, all the dialog is from the center channel.

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Re: Interviewing yourself / switching channels from one mic

Permanent link to this post Posted by kozikowski » Tue Oct 10, 2017 10:39 am

Oddly, I can't think of a good way to do this with one pass in post production.

Announce both sides at the same time. Straight run-through. Duplicate the track so you have two blue waves of the same thing. Apply effects, filters or corrections to one so it sounds enough different from the main voice to be believable. Now go in word by word and mute the "wrong" voice, so the person talking follows the right effect.

That could be a multi-year retirement project.

You might be able to do it with a mixer. Most stereo mixers have a PAN control where you can "put" the performer anywhere left to right. In this case, you pan left and right with each voice in real time, apply different effects to Left and Right to create two different people, but then combine them into one mono track as a final.

In that case you need to be terrifically athletic to switch back and forth in real time and you can't make any mistakes.

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Re: Interviewing yourself / switching channels from one mic

Permanent link to this post Posted by Geekquilibrium » Tue Oct 10, 2017 1:32 pm

I think the varied distance trick is the key for me. It will be almost entirely improv and if I set up my Yeti in a neutral position and try bidirectional mode I can shift slightly left/right closer/farther away. You jogged my memory and I remember doing something like that a lifetime ago (the 90's) for a radio sketch when we needed a "crew of pirates".

I think you are right about the left/right channel switching too.

Excellent advice. Thank you.
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