Everybody seems to think you can’t get a good vocal recording without a vocal booth.

I say nay.

I’ve sung in many a vocal booth, and while it would be nice to have one, that ain’t gonna happen.

They’re huge.

They’re expensive.

And they’re not the ONLY way to get a great-sounding vocal track.

Here’s what I do.

Being in a home studio, noise is inevitable. Fan noise from your computer or hard drive, air conditioner noise, traffic noise, etc.

Would a professional vocal booth solve a lot of these noise problems?


BUT…there’s another way.

And this way doesn’t work every single time, but I’m almost always pleasantly surprised by the results I get.

What’s the secret?

Using gates and/or expanders to create that “vocal booth” sound.

Think about it.

When you’re listening to a vocal track, you generally don’t hear the various noises from the room until the singer stops singing. It’s those spaces between phrases where the noise becomes apparent.

So I slap an expander/gate on there, and it takes care of the noise.

Suddenly the vocal sounds like it was recorded in a nice, quiet booth.

Now, this takes some tweaking, and there’s a right and a wrong way to do it.

One of the new bonus videos I’m adding to Understanding Compression later this week will cover my approach to using gates/expanders.

Just another of many reasons why you should jump on the Understanding Compression bandwagon:


Joe Gilder