changing podcast voice to something tolerable

I found a site that has some podcasts that are good but the voice is too annoying.
Sounds robotic actually or like his mouth is wired shut or he’s trying to sound
like a broadcaster???

Is there an easy way to apply an effect to this to change the voice?
Would it require multiple effects passes?

What would you do to modify the voice?

You could ask him to try and get a bit more emotion in his voice while he is reading, and stop blowing into the microphone (a pop shield would fix that).

Pop and blast filer?

Normally yes, but he’s wearing a headset with the microphone too close.


I have one of those. Completely emotionless voice that puts people to sleep. I’ve actually done studies of one of the artists in the company that seems to have a voice that you can listen to for hours non-stop. He does presentations that are SRO. I still can’t figure out how he does it–or better, how I can do it.

Anyway, I think the poster doesn’t know the announcer. He’s just looking for the “Professional Audio Filter.” You take whatever you shot and put it into the filter and it comes out professional announcer talking into a Neumann in a soundproof room. We’ve been trying to get one of the programmers on the video forum to write that for years.

Either that, or it’s a cleverly disguised commercial.


I’m just a consumer. The announcer must have engaged a big part of his ego into these podcasts.
Seems like it would be hard to extract that ego from the equation.

But may be harder to alter the podcasts.

I’ve fiddled with a lot of the filters. But I really don’t know what I’m doing. (^:
And the Audacity I’m using leaks lots of memory so it’s hard to use.

SRO? Anyway maybe you can coax that artist to contact the site and they can have him do one of those.
Then they could put up a poll and ask listeners which voice they like.

I can sense sarcasm I think. Are you trying to say it’s a hard problem to solve? If so, I already knew that much.

<<<And the Audacity I’m using leaks lots of memory so it’s hard to use.>>>

1.2.4 did that. Upgrade to 1.2.6.

Standing Room Only. Literally. Or Sitting Room Only. He’s been known to fill a conference room up to people squatting on the floor. Squatting Room Only?

Anyway, no you will not be able to solve the popping P sounds in post other than copying and pasting a P that worked into a place where it didn’t. That should only take weeks–but would work.

As far as everything else goes, he’s the poster child of why people still pay announcers instead of just applying the Professional Audio Filter. The up side of this is, if he’s listening to himself, he sounds like he will eventually get better. The first couple of times people hear themselves, they usually want to crawl under a bed somewhere.

<<<Are you trying to say it’s a hard problem to solve? If so, I already knew that much.>>>

No. Different direction. I don’t think this posting “feels” right. I think you are the announcer and you’re trying to get some free labor out of the deal. Alternately, or in addition, this is a multiply posted, free commercial for the work.

Usually we catch those because they’re not very graceful about it. No, I don’t need any more Nike® sneakers, thanks, but every so often one sneaks by because it could be a legit post.


When I installed audacity on ubuntu I got 1.3.4Beta, so it’s a regression I guess.

I didn’t notice any popping sounds and I don’t care about them anyway.

Nope, no affiliation with the site. And as far as I know the podcasts are all free. I’ve only listend to two of them so far. So not sure what I’d be advertising. And if I was advertising I wouldn’t do it here and not in this particular forum either.

3062 Posts/870 days since initial post
3.5 Posts/day

Not exactly a high-profile place for someone to hawk their wares.

FYI, I found the link to the site at

Anyway if you’re the welcoming committee here you’re not doing a very good job.
Unless your intent is to keep people from coming back.

No we’re not the “welcoming committee”, we’re enthusiastic Audacity users, part of a community of people that have interests in audio editing, open source software, and in particular “Audacity”. As in every community, not everyone always see eye-to-eye, but we try and keep it friendly. Koz has a well known reputation on the forum for having a unique style of descriptive metaphor, and often appearing grumpy, but he is a much valued contributor to the forum and has helped literally hundreds of people to overcome their difficulties in using Audacity.

We are also forum “moderators”, which essentially means that we have the job of removing spam from the forum. With over 30,000 posts to the forum (you missed a “0”), the forum acts as a strong spam magnet. The measures that are employed (including moderation) are essential to prevent the forum from being overrun by spam, which would happen very rapidly and render the forum useless.

A you have categorically stated that you have no affiliation with that podcast, I do of course accept our word, though interestingly my initial impression of your first post was also that you were the podcaster, or friend of the podcaster. “My friend has a problem, can you help him?”. I guess that is just one of the shortcomings of communicating in text.

Back to the problem - There is noticeable “wind blast” on the recording when sounds such as “p” and “b” are pronounced. This is a common issue and is caused by a blast of air from the mouth striking the microphone causing a low “thud” type sound. The problem occurs when the microphone is used close to the mouth and can be avoided in a couple of ways.

When using a conventional recording microphone, a “pop shield” can be placed between the speakers mouth and the microphone to prevent the wind blast from striking the microphone. See here for an excellent short article about using pop shields:

When using a headset microphone, the microphone should be carefully positioned to the side of the mouth to ensure that it does not catch any direct blasts of air from the mouth or nose.

Once the recording has been made, it is difficult to remove these “pops” without adversely affecting the quality of the recording, which is why avoiding the pops during the recording process is so important. However, some degree of improvement is possible by applying a “high pass filter” to the recording to cut out frequencies below the frequency range of the voice. Somewhere around 100Hz would be about right.

Audacity 1.3.6 includes a suitable high pass filter as standard. Earlier versions of Audacity require that you add a high pass filter as a “plug-in”. See here about plug-in effects for Audacity:

The major problem that you were initially asking about “the voice is too annoying. Sounds robotic actually or like his mouth is wired shut or he’s trying to sound like a broadcaster?” is rather more difficult.

Changing the voice is a bit like changing the face of a portrait photograph so that it looks like someone else.
Following this analogy a bit further, if you were changing a picture of someone’s face in a graphic editing program, there are various things that you could do - change the colours, apply a “blur” effect, stretch it or squash it, pixelate it, make it darker or lighter… but non of these effects will change an ugly face into a pretty face. The only way to achieve that is to replace the face with someone else’s face. (cut out the face and drop in a different persons face).

A similar method would commonly be used in professional recording situations - the speaker would be replaced by someone with a better “radio voice”. This is one of the reasons why professional radio presenters and voice over actors are employed.

With Audacity, you can blur, squash, stretch, or otherwise distort the recording, but if you want to make it sound like someone else, then the method would be to go through the podcast and transcribe the text, then record yourself, or someone else reading the text and replace the original voice recording with your new recording.