For many of us, removing the security-blanket of headphones allows us to stop (often subconsciously!) listening to ourselves so much while we record, and focus more on the script and the feelings we want to create with it.
We also tend to try to sound more “official” when we have headphones on. Removing them can help us feel, and sound, more normal and loose…which many clients want.
Totally understandable! There are some great, small, compact monitors that can actually fit in very small spaces. You might be able to get creative in where/how you hang or set them in your space.
It’s worth at least seeing if there’s a way for you to make it happen. As Don says “Actors tend to be better actors without headphones.”
Here’s one of Don’s favorite options. They also allow you to plug in headphones when you want them, right in the front of the monitors
Eris 4.5 Monitors (7″ x 7″ on the bottom, 9.5″ tall)
The same monitors have a smaller size (Eris 3.5) and a big sister version (Eris 5.5) that are also great options if you need slightly smaller, or the larger ones are better in larger spaces and/or working with more music.
A) You’ll still be able to hear enough on playback on good monitors. B) There’s great tech software available to help take that out automatically. C) As Don says, “I’ll take some mouth noise with GREAT performance over no mouth noise and a bad performance.”
Right here! Izotope Director of Education and professional mastering engineer Jonathan Wyner discusses mastering with headphones in detail.
Totally get it! At least try recording with one headphone/earbud OFF/OUT, so that you can still hear your system, but you’re not totally immersed in your own voice.