Hey @DallasSteve – I’m a big OVox fan and a fan of vocoding in general.
There are two critical aspects to vocoding: the carrier (source voice, etc.) and the modulator (the synth.)
To get a good vocode without artifacts you want the voice signal to be as clean as possible. Any artifacts like breath sounds, clicks, pops — even if they are quiet, they can result in weird sounds once modulated by the synth sound.
Adjustments to the carrier and adjustments to the modulator can make a huge difference to the resulting sound. With that in mind, try using a good channel strip like Scheps Omni Channel or SSL EV2 on the vocal before it is vocoded. Use the gate (or manual editing) to eliminate all sounds other than speech.
Now try adjusting the EQ – try cuts and boosts on various ranges and listen to the resulting vocoded sound. Also adjust the amount of compression on the voice. It will affect the vocoded result as well.
EQing the modulator (synth sound) is just as important, but I haven’t set up OVox in a way where that is possible yet and I’m not sure if you can. I just know, from the past, that using a channel strip on both the source synth and the voice and tuning them accordingly makes a big difference with any vocoder.
Lastly, post-processing your vocoded result is just as important! So in a perfect world, you have a fully featured channel strip on the voice, the synth, AND the vocoded result.
PS. Based on your needs, do a search for “Emvoice” – it might be right up your alley. Imagine a realistic voice (male, female, or robotic) singing on your song. You enter the words and enter the notes, and it just works. It’s pretty incredible. I use it to write placeholder parts which my female singer then replaces — but it actually sounds surprisingly good just on its own.
Thanks for your reply. I actually found a solution for my vocals that I am happy with. It is the Waves Ovox. I initially bought Melodyne auto tune, but that was a waste of $100 for me. I was not satisfied with it at all. So I then bought Ovox for about $30 and I basically use it as auto tune and it gives me a very satisfying fix to my old vocals. I use a vocal guide MIDI track in my song production file. I enable MIDI input in Ovox and then I set Note Source to MIDI and I set Correction to Notes. I have to do some editing on the MIDI notes to get them lined up to my vocals but when I finish as I say I am very happy with the result. You can listen yourself, if you like, on my YouTube channel, but Waves won’t let me post a link here. You can search YouTube for “steve gaines laptop band a pastiche play”
Thanks for the link, I’m listening to “The Good Cheater” right now. It’s been a while since I heard a song with actual interesting lyrics, it seems like most songs are word salad and this actually made me follow along.
Your use of Ovox is wild, I’ll have to give it a shot! The closest I’ve come to working that way is when I had only one layer of a female vocalist and I needed a harmony. I put Vocal Bender into “flat” mode and automated the pitch to recompose a layered melody.
Seems like OVox could do that naturally! Anyhow, keep rockin’ man. I tried to look you up on Soundcloud but you weren’t there. Consider throwing your stuff up on there!
I haven’t created a SoundCloud page, but if you think it might actually get some fans for my music I will investigate it. “The Good Cheater” was based on an article I saw on my news feed one day. A women wrote into Your Tango or something like that with her story and I thought it sounded like a good subject for a song. It’s taken directly from her story. The music is a re-write of Kashmir by Led Zeppelin. I like the way it turned out.
Ah, these days it takes a lot of promotion so more than likely Soundcloud wouldn’t be a magic solution for you…
But I like it. I use the “pro” subscription which includes free submission to Spotify and every other audio walled garden that requires 3rd party submission.
Alternatively you can use their free version, and for that if you want Spotify (+Apple, Amazon, and everything else) it’s like $30/year.
Anyhow, if you ever wanted to make your stuff more widely available it’s a good option. There’s also Distrokid which I haven’t used.
But no, I don’t think it’s a magic bullet for promotion by any means.