Why Does Our Live Stream Audio Sound So Bad?

Bad Live Stream Audio

You’ve probably heard a church live stream (or a thousand) that sounds really, really bad.

The mix is dry, and you hear every flaw in everyone’s voice.

It just sounds bad.

Imagine how embarrassed your praise team is when they feel like they sounded great, only to hear the live stream playback! They won’t appreciate the sound tech or the live stream tech.

You don’t want to have a church split over bad audio.

Getting Better Sounding Audio on a Live Stream

The reason audio sounds good in person but horrible on a live stream comes down to acoustics. In a live venue, there are natural reverbs and distance from the speaker to the ear that helps everything to blend together really nicely.

When those audio signals are sent into a television or computer speaker, though, none of those acoustical or reverb factors exist.

It’s just dry audio.

That’s why the effects are super important.

Add Some Room Effects

You need to add some room reverbs to your live stream mix.

The sound needs to “feel” like you’re listening in a live venue.

It will make the voices blend with music better, and make your praise team love you. So, add some reverb effects to your live stream mix!

You don’t want the reverb to last too long, or to be too loud. So, experiment and figure out what sounds like you are listening to the praise singing in a large open room.

It probably won’t get to sound exactly like your particular sanctuary, and that’s okay.

You just need it to sound blended, and feel good to the ears.

Add Some Room Noise

Audio pros “mic the room” to get the extra dynamic that’s difficult to replicate through straight effects. There’s an audience reaction element, and the natural reverbs from your own sanctuary.

In some cases, a great sounding room mic can be mixed in and negate the need for added effects.

However, for most live streams, a little bit of both goes a long way.

Make it Sound Good

Do whatever it takes to produce quality audio.

In larger churches with paid professionals on their audio staff, they run their audio through a digital audio workstation (DAW) before it goes to their church live stream.

They can do a lot of amazing things with real-time audio this way, including adding real-time vocal tuners. These, though not flawless, make sure that your vocal singers, who will naturally go sharp and flat while they sing, sound like they have perfect pitch.

If you can figure out how to do that, your stream will take a huge leap forward in the quality of audio you put out.

If you cannot do the vocal tuning live, that’s okay. No one expects perfection when they are watching a live event.

One thing you can do, is to stream the live event with as good a mix as you can put together. Then, record the live stream and multi-track record your music. Then, after the service, you can mix and tune vocals, and overdub the audio on the video.

Then, you can upload the “produced” version of the live service with perfect audio.

One Reply to “Why Does Our Live Stream Audio Sound So Bad?”

  1. Pingback: How To Stream a Church Service: The Beginner's Guide - Church Setup

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