Recording Vocals with Audacity (Kind of need help?)

Hi. I just have some kind of query. I am thinking about recording audio tracks in the future but I am wondering if Audacity can record a vocal like something from A Tribe Called Quest’s “The Low End Theory” (Music Album on official CD) and something from Robin Thicke’s “Something Else” (Music Album on official CD). I’m kind of referencing Q-Tip’s solo vocal in Track 5 from The Low End Theory album and kind of how Robin Thicke’s vocal was recorded in Track 8 from the Something Else album.

A Tribe Called Quest’s “Verses From The Abstract”

Robin Thicke’s “The Sweetest Love”

Just trying to get a professional, clear sound quality vocal like how those two tracks sound like on an official CD.

I put on some average headphones to hear both tracks really close recently and I hear a little bit of a natural background echo in the vocals or something of that sort in the tracks. I heard both excerpts from those albums in a stereo system through the official CDs. I am wondering how much reverb has to be added to a vocal recording in Audacity to achieve something like those excerpts from those two albums. Can some reverb really give the vocals a professional sound? I’m trying to get the vocals to sound professional like those two excerpts on an official CD.

I’m trying to learn how to keep recordings in clear sound quality as well and I’ve been working on trying to understand how to keep things in clear sound quality.

I am using a USB microphone that came with a Nintendo Wii video game to capture vocals in Audacity:

Should I get a better mic or can something really be achieved by reverbing properly?

Also if I mix an instrumental track & a vocal recording together, can reverb mess up the recording?

Any help is much appreciated. Thanks.

…yeah…I’m only using Audacity 1.3 Beta (Unicode)…? That’s all I could really use right now…?

I’m trying to learn how to keep recordings in clear sound quality as well and I’ve been working on trying to understand how to keep things in clear sound quality.

Most of the time the problem with home recording … is the home. Unless you have a soundproofed room or something that will pass for one, the recordings are always going to sound like you recorded in a kitchen, bathroom or rain barrel. Doesn’t matter what kind of microphone you have.

This is a sound clip from someone who ran out of studio time and decided to just pick it up at home.

There is no filter for that. She will always sound like she recorded in a garage. Oddly, many garages sound pretty good because they’re stuffed with so much crap, all those boxes and junk act like sound deadening. Mine can do that.

Give us a push. Record a sound track with your microphone connected to your computer and post it here. I wrote a description of the type of sound file that will do us the most good.

Don’t try to help it along. Just record the room, your voice, export a sound file and post it. We need to start from someplace.

Scroll down, upload attachment > Choose File.


As Koz wrote, the recording environment is really important. In particular, if there is excessive reverberation (room echoes) or background noise, then you will never get a really professional sounding recording.

Also, the Audacity 1.3.x series is obsolete and no longer supported. The current version is Audacity 2.1.1 and is available (free) here:

Alright, I see,…………I’m trying to see if I could really get to what I really need help with, if the reverb (Gverb) effect in Audacity can get the vocals that are recorded naturally to sound like something in at least the “Sweetest Love” track that would be great. If someone could help with finding the right reverb effect setting so that it could do something to the vocal that will sound like something from Q-Tip’s vocal part in “Verses From the Abstract” or Robin Thicke’s vocal part from “The Sweetest Love” that would be great. I think I’m probably really looking for the proper reverb (or Gverb) effect setting? If we could all find the proper adjustments for the reverb (Gverb) setting to have it sound something like those two tracks that were mentioned that would be great if maybe some people could share how they set there settings up too so that it could sound like something from those two tracks or maybe even something like this one:

I referenced “Verses From The Abstract” and “The Sweetest Love” because I also kind of want to know how to mix vocals (with or without reverb effect) with an instrumental track. Can reverb effect possibly mess up the instrumental track too when the vocals are combined with an instrumental and exported?

I’ve done a few recoridng tests with the microphone that I got from the video game package and it does record the vocals naturally. It captures the vocals in the Audacity program very dry and natural. I’m referencing the term “dry” in a way that came in this Youtube video where microphones were being tested: I’m also referencing the term “reverb” from whatever way the microphones were being tested in this video:

If someone could explain what they were talking about with the words “dry”,”wet”, and “reverb” a little bit more that would be great?

If it isn’t proper reverb (Gverb) settings I guess I’ll let you know if I’m ready to send an audio recording test and I’ll send one in a private message? I am just trying to see if this is what I really need help with.

I think I have a few more questions too, but I know I gotta understand probably the “dry”,”wet”, and “reverb” type of recording techniques with a microphone first……?

It captures the vocals in the Audacity program very dry and natural.

The best you can do is a raw voice recording with no “room” in it. No echoes, reverb or noises. Once you get that, you can go anywhere else.

Dry is without effects, wet is with. Many software packages provide a slider so you can hear what different combinations sound like.

Reverb is a little messy. Many people mean any room effects, but it should technically be broken up into Reverberation and Echo.

You may run out of elves. I don’t know that any of the elves have good experience with music post production. That’s why your thread slowed down. That’s right out of my world.