Voice over Artists or TTS Software! [Which one should you go for in 2018?]

In the words of Sir Arthur C. Clarke, “Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.”

If that’s true, then the year 2018 is full of magic!

Why do I say so? Look around yourself.

Automation today, is artfully sliding into all our daily affairs, without us even realising it sometimes! From a simple coffee maker to something as advance as Amazon’s Alexa, we are surrounded by mind blowing technology!

And the best part is that these developments are on a constant rise, making our lives so much easier.

One such great phenomenon has been noted in the field of Speech Synthesis.

The tech world has really come a long way since 1975, when “MUSA”, one of the world’s first speech synthesis systems was developed. It then consisted of a stand-alone computer hardware and a specialized software that enabled it to read Italian.

These TTS systems were first developed to aid the visually impaired by offering a computer-generated spoken voice that would "read" text to the user.

And do you remember the iconic voice of Professor Stephen Hawking?!

stephen-hawking

By giving voice to one of the greatest minds on earth, TTS proved what it’s capable of! And the technology has been developing ever since.

So much so, that until sometime ago, the only way to voice our video scripts professionally was to reach out to a voice over artist or a voice actor. And now, we have advanced TTS softwares like “Animaker Voice" as potential alternatives.

But the important question here is, “Can it be considered as a perfect substitute to human voice?”

thinking

Let’s see what a modern, sophisticated TTS is capable of delivering over and above a voice over artist.


1. Multiple Languages

Most businesses today either operate globally or aspire to become multinational.

Naturally, they look forward to publishing their video content in multiple languages to suit the different native audience.

But the process of finding voice over artists for all languages is tiresome. The company has to make sure that they hire a voiceover artist whose voice suits the brand as well as the region the video is going to be targeted at.

Surely, voice over artists are great in what they do, but it’s humanly impossible to be fluent in many languages and dialects at once!

multiple languages
Usually, the 3 crucial elements for any perfect voice over are:
  • Proper accent/dialect
  • Consistency in pronunciation
  • A steady pace

This is where a good TTS software can come in handy. A computer generated voice unlike a human voice is consistent in its speech at all times.

Nowadays, these softwares also come with support for at least 20+ languages. So, It naturally becomes a one stop solution for all your voiceover needs and you don’t have to go out looking for loads of voice artists from different nationalities.


2. Shorter Production Time

The traditional process of recording human voice overs is a lengthy one. It involves:

STEP 1: Reaching out to agencies or individual voice actors to send voice samples

STEP 2: Shortlisting and finalising the most suitable voice

STEP 3: Scheduling the voice over work

STEP 4: Reviewing the output; and then requesting for rework (in case of any edits).

If you ask us, the most tedious step is the last one. Reaching out to the Voice over artist over and over again for edits in the voice output, sometimes gets really annoying.

frustrated

But all this is avoidable!

Today, Speech Synthesis and the Text-to-Speech technology has advanced enough that anyone can avail and use it anytime without much hassle.

You don’t even have to possess any serious technical skills to work your way around these softwares. The TTS applications in the market today have such user-friendly interfaces that it’s in fact fun to work with them.

They also allow easy edits and downloads. There’s absolutely no need to step out or book another appointment to get that lengthy voice over work re-done. Everything can be done in-house.


3. Cost Effectiveness

Hiring a voice artist can cost you anywhere between $100 to $1000 or even more, depending on your requirements, like the length of your script or the size of your project.

The purpose of the voice over also greatly impacts the voice actor’s fee. For instance, a voice over for a national broadcast would cost you much more than that for a local broadcast.

Here’s a snapshot from Fiverr.com. This should give you an idea of how much a VoiceOver can cost you:

Voice over rates

But, if you opt for a TTS software to create voice overs, you wouldn’t have to worry about such a premium pricing. In fact, a lot of good applications out there have free monthly trials.

Yes! This is all the more a reason to try them out before actually making up your mind.


Cherish All Creative Possibilities!

Till sometime back, a computer generated voice used to sound very boring, emotionless and mundane. Today, the technology has advanced enough to closely relate human voices because of advanced effects like voice, tone and pitch modulation, emphasis on select words, breathing sounds, etc.

In fact, there have been occasions when it has become difficult to identify which voice is real and which is the output of a TTS engine. One great example is Google’s AI Assistant who can actually make calls on your behalf, sounding completely natural over the phone. Here’s a clip that shows what our future with AI Assistants could be like!

But we do accept the fact that even today there are some things that only a voice actor can deliver better. Yet the remarkable developments in the field of Speech Synthesis deserve a mention!

This is the reason why Animaker came up with its own VoiceOver making tool called Animaker Voice.

What do you think the future looks like? Let us know in the comments below.

Subscribe

Subscribe to get awesome DIY tips that could break the boundaries of other DIY tools.