The Magic of Synchronized Sight & Sound

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VO or Voice-Over Narration with eLearning modules at first seems somewhat arcane. What’s the big deal? Everyone has access to a microphone, everyone can read, and usually the webinar recording is more than adequate. All this is true until it isn’t true.

The highest production quality of an eLearning module occurs when there is syncopation between the voice-over narration and the visuals and words on the screen. When everything is in synch, the viewer automatically becomes more open to the content. There is less reason to shut down, walk away, or not pay attention to the content.

Our premise of knowledge assimilation is that classes of content fit in stacked layers, one upon the other. Each layer is a modality, that is, information encoded in a medium for presentation to the viewer’s visual and auditory cognitive senses. In short, there are two modalities working in a training module: sight and sound. This includes images, bullets, and screen-to-screen transitions are pre-defined, that is, they provide the foundation of the training module. There is no need to synchronize elements because they reside on the same layer of cognitive and modal assimilation. This explains our theory of how we see voice. Now, let’s explain the practical implications of using in-house Studio voices as our first choice.

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STUDIO VOICE OPTION

As you might guess, XLRQSTUDIOS sees the use of voice-over narration a little differently than the mainstream. When someone thinks of voice-over, they usually think of having a lot of choice in voice options. That is an option, but not the one we offer as part of our standard integrated corporate learning package.

XLRQSTUDIOS uses two in-house voices, one male and one female, and we do this for good reasons.

Let’s go over why we don’t have a lot of voice-over variation.

  • Believe it or not, the main reason is that scripts get revised after multiple reviews. What this means is that the VO must be revised multiple times.
  • A traditional VO professional is expensive, and if the budget can withstand it, certainly offers more variation in options.
  • When it comes time to re-do a script, even for a small pick-up, this means studio rental, a minimum VO fee, engineering fees, and so on.
  • You get the picture. Most budgets do not allow a variation in VO.

OTHER VO OPTIONS

Of course, we offer other voice-over options. You always have the option of using your SME’s voice. We don’t do on-site recordings, but we do have the capability of recording your SME over the telephone. We hook the phone connection straight into our studio, and then process and edit the results. Although we equalize it for good sound, it still may have an FM radio feel to it.

Another option is to find a Voice-Over that you like. We don’t mind working with your voice-over. Most professional VO’s know what to do, and have the ability to produce high quality sound files. In this case, your VO contracts with you directly.

CONCLUSION

When it comes to the use of voice-over narration, the production objective is to achieve optimum synchronization between the sight and sound elements within the presentation. This requires editing and multiple iterations. Going in and out of a studio with an outside voice-over is expensive and time consuming. When it comes time to weigh the value of content creation, we feel using our in-house voice-overs achieves the optimum result. Again, you can use other voice-overs or use your SME. We are more than happy to work with them. Once you weigh the cost: benefit of voice-over narration, we’re sure you will make the choice that’s right for your organization’s training needs.

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