Mono or Stereo For Voice Recording. Should I Record Voice In Mono or Stereo

Mono or Stereo For Voice Recording. Should I Record Voice In Mono Or Stereo

Should I record voice in mono or stereo? What is the difference between mono or stereo for voice recording?

In fact, many people confuse them with each other. Therefore, they often use them in the wrong way. The incorrect method of recording vocals will adversely affect the later mixing.

Let’s explore together!

What is the difference between mono or stereo for voice recording?

If you need to record a single person’s vocals, you should record in mono. However, if you need to record the vocals of multiple persons and instruments, you should choose stereo.

Check out the video now for a complete overview.

Take a Closer Look At Mono and Stereo

You can record vocals through 2 modes: Mono (single-channel audio) and Stereo (two-channel audio system).

#1. Mono sound (Monophonic)

Mono, or single-channel audio, comes from one direction. When you listen to mono systems, you will feel that the sound you are hearing is coming from a fixed direction.

Some typical examples of Mono sound:

  • The sound comes from a person standing in front of you.
  • The sound came from a bird standing on a tree.

#2. Stereo (two-channel audio system)

Stereo sound is sound that comes from many different sound sources. Stereo sound can create a more ‘wide’ feeling in a recording. As a result, you will get the realistic sounds like you are listening to live music.

In fact, many people prefer to listen to stereo because they get the sensation of listening to live music.

People often use both mono and stereo in recording vocals. Thanks to mono recording, the singer’s voice can become clearer and stronger. Meanwhile, the stereo recording can make the singer’s voice wider and louder.

How to Make Mono and  Stereo Recording?

When you choose mono recording, you will only need to use a microphone to record through a single channel. Thus, you also only need to use a single speaker to playback the recording.

You can also playback a mono recording through the two speakers. However, each speaker will sound duplicated with the other speaker. That means both your ears receive the same sound (if you use headphones).

Besides, if you select stereo recording, you will need to use two microphones during the recording process.

Nowadays, you can record stereo sound with handheld recorders. Their working mechanism is to record sound using two available microphones. Through two built-in microphones, these handheld recorders can store two different sounds.

When to Use Mono or Stereo for Vocal Recording?

As mentioned above, you should choose mono if you are recording the vocals of a single singer. However, if you are recording two or more singers, you should choose stereo.

When a singer sings, he only generates a single signal. If you record his vocals in stereo, there will be no difference between the left and right channels. Therefore, Stereo recording is useless in this case.

When you need to record the vocals of multiple singers at once, you should choose stereo recording.

However, there are some situations where you should record a vocal in stereo. For example, you should do the stereo recording for the chorus. You can also use a stereo recording if you want others to think you sang in a theatre.

You should also consider the state of the vocals you want to get on the recording. Mono recording makes vocals stronger, clearer, and more realistic. Meanwhile, stereo recording can make vocals louder, wider, and softer.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Should I record vocal reverb in stereo?

The short answer is yes. Thanks to stereo recording, you can increase the reverb of the vocals. However, this can make your mixing more difficult. Therefore, you need to consider this method carefully.

  1. What should I use for background vocals, Mono or Stereo?

When recording background vocals, you should use stereo. As a result, you can create width for the background vocals and highlight the main vocals.

  1. For music production recording, which one is the best?

When producing vocal music products, sound engineers often choose mono recording. There’re many cases where they need to switch to stereo for vocal recording

In music videos, on the other hand, stereo recording of vocals will provide realistic sound. It is something that many people want to receive.

However, most experts will recommend mono for vocal recording.

  1. How to Record In Stereo?

Here is our favorite way:

  • Let’s start with the preparation of two omnidirectional microphones.
  • Basically, all you need to do is position each microphone towards a different part of your singer.
  • Thanks to that, you can get ‘A’ and ‘B’ parts to create a complete recording.
  1. Can I record individual instruments with mono?

Entirely possible. The way to record musical instruments with mono is similar to recording vocals.

  1. What are the benefits of mono headsets?

Mono headsets only come with one earpiece. Therefore, you can still keep an ear on what’s going on around you while using this headset.

It is especially useful when you work in an office where you can receive calls all day.

In addition, when using mono headsets while on the road, you can also easily avoid accidents.

Final Words

Hopefully, through this article, you can gain basic knowledge about mono and stereo recording. Vocal recording is an important factor in later mixing.

Therefore, to get the best sound recording, you need to choose the right method to record vocals.

Your choice depends on the number of singers you record and the type of vocals you want to get from the recording.

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