Voice Over - Native voices


Most professional voice actors can record, approximately, up to 1,500 words of standard narration wild in one hour. This includes time for listening back to the audio and re-recording any mistakes. However, the time varies depending on the type of project. For example, a professional narrator can frequently record, approximately, 1,500 – 1,800 words for an Audiobook in one hour. This is because they may be well prepared and/or are able to sight read making very few errors. The same narrator reading a technical eLearning programme may only record 10 mins of audio in the same hour.


If the voice over must be time-synced to a video or recorded within a specific duration this will take about twice as long as a wild recording. This is because the actor will have to repeat the sentences many times to get the pacing right. It’s even more difficult if they must match an on-screen speaker or actor phrase by phrase, particularly if the speech is fast. Most voice actors can record, approximately,  8-10 minutes time-sync in one hour, but it can be less for foreign voice over, technical subjects or where timing is more complex.


Lip-sync voice over is extremely time consuming, it will take 4-6 times longer than a wild recording. The voice actor will have to repeat their lines dozens of times to get the timing right. And if they are performing a character role it can take even longer trying to get the timing and the emotion right. There are also pre-production costs associated with foreign dubbing projects because the script will need to be adapted (condensed) to match the lip movements. For this reason, lip-sync recordings are un-common and predominantly used only in feature films, animations or video games with higher budgets. Most corporate videos are dubbed time-sync instead or in a UN-style like a news interview where the voice over acts as an interpreter.