Dubbing audio with your camera's microphone for websites and YouTube videos can add distorted echo and background noise creating an unprofessional quality to your media files. Nobody wants that, especially when entering voice or music competitions. Having dabbled in soundbite creation, I found that simple programs and cost efficient microphones will enable you to create a professional recording that can rival any studio, but there are a few basic conditions you should be aware of.
Audio file types. Always create a wave (.WAV) file when producing the original copy. Although large, waves create the most defined audio sample and are easily manipulated using almost any editing program. Editing a wave file keeps the best possible quality while also helping you make corrections at even the finest increment within your data stream.
Microphones. Throw away the one that came with your audio package because you will need a professional microphone that will not only capture your voice but also your range. Cheap microphones will distort at higher or lower levels, which will be unnoticeable at first, but when you adjust the gain during editing will add feedback to your piece. Always choose a microphone that is right for your needs, and don't be too frugal because you can only be as good as your equipment.
Capture programs. There are literally millions of ways to capture your audio file on your hard drive. I will not go into details of all the different types, styles, and usability of each because that would be boring to you, and me, so I will share with you the free program I have been using. Audacity. Easy to cut and paste sections of audio, reduce background noise from the entire cut, increase gain and add simple effects without bogging down your processor, or paying a dime. Record your audio all in one shot and tear it apart from the source. Simple and affective.
Reformatting your audio. Just like capture there are millions of methods to reformat your audio. MP3 is the easiest and most compatible format and can be done using the export function in Audacity. Adjusting bit rate is done during the export, just choose the file type and the options tab. It also allows you to adjust limited stereo options. Bit rate signifies the quality and size of the resulting data file: Larger bit rate = better quality. So, now that you have created your sample audio cut it is time to win some money!
Folger's "Best part of wakin' up" Jingle Contest runs between January 22 and March 6, and with a chance to win $25,000 you better wake up and smell... well, you know. Since celebrating their 25th year of "wakin' up", Folgers has been looking for new talent to add to their popularized jingle, and you could join the ranks of performers like Johnny Cash and Rascal Flats. Wakin' up Folger's iconic jingle with a flare all you must be a video between 60 and 90 seconds long and to help brew up some inspiration, Folger's has showcased the previous winners on their contest website where you can also find all their official rules. So compile your high quality audio byte, attach it to a creative and inspirational video and submit because, the best part of wakin' up is Twenty Five Thousand bucks. ;-)