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Voice over home studio chairs, stands, desks…

Edge Studio
Here is the list of your faves! Thanks so much to all of the voice actors who contributed their suggestions!!
Please send more suggestions to [email protected].

Chairs … quiet, comfy chairs for home recording!

  • Emerge Vortex gaming chair (Staples) I have more than one now, and they are comfortable for long sitting sessions [Click here]
  • The one item I love the most for long form narration and audiobook work is this chair: [Click here]  The industrial metal frame means NO SQUEAKS!
  • I also have a rear-end cushion for longer days 😉 [Click here]
  • I used to use a guitar stool (Fender) purchased at a music store, but as it aged, it started to loosen and the metal legs squeaked when I shifted. I now use a tall wooden “kitchen bar stool” with a back, which allows me to sit straight and forward when recording, but relax against the chair back slightly when doing audiobooks and longer-form reads. It swivels like the guitar stool did, but thus far it’s absolutely silent.
  • I had sciatica a while back.  That meant that standing for any amount of time was very painful.  Since I record standing up, I didn’t consider anything but high barstools and the like when I needed something to help me out.  In looking around, I didn’t find anything that seemed as though it would work for a reasonable price.  Found my solution by pure chance on Facebook Marketplace.  It’s a standing chair.  They’re also called “wobble” or “balance” chairs.  I have: Vari Active Seat (Amazon listing, for reference:  [Click here]
  • I’d recommend the Inbox Zero Mesh Drafting Chair from Wayfair [Click here] My fabulous coach James Andrews told me I should look at drafting chairs when I was looking for a chair for my new booth. This one is quiet, comfortable, and small enough to fit comfortably in a Studiobricks One. I have to move it outside of my booth for when I need to stand, but if I’m editing or want to work sitting down, this chair does the trick. I really like it.
  • Costco office chair. The chair is quiet and fully adjustable and only $150. I find stools are too inclined to creak and pop, so I’ve avoided them for a long time. A metal folding chair has been fine with a memory foam cushion as well if you give it a chance to settle, but avoid ones with vinyl cushions or you’ll hear them also creak and pop until you get the air out of it. Some spend $1000 on just a chair and that’s just ridiculous.
  • Piano stool: [Click here] Get chair arms out of the way and let your body move for more animated sitting reads
  • Herman miller Aeron chair: [Click here] Not cheap but mine’s into it’s 3rd decade. Makes long hours doing whatever kind of desk work waaaay more comfortable.
  • From tonight’s ‘Home Studio Show and Tell’.  Here’s a chair I recommend for VO studio booth. [Click here]
  • IKEA LIDKULLEN stool – This stool is very well made and should probably cost more than it does. It’s heavy enough to not move around or make noise if I’m in a standing/leaning position, comfortable enough to sit on for hours at a time, and compact enough to move out of the way when I want to stand. The cushion is firm but bouncy and the fabric is durable.
  • Chair/stool for recording:  Winrise Ergonomic Office Chair. [Click here]  This chair is ergonomic with a high back, reclines, with lumbar support, breathable mesh and adjustable height and armrests (Black) I sit in my studio a lot!  Recording voice-overs and filling in on the Road Dog Channel on Sirius/XM.  Best value for the money.  It’s quite, comfortable with lumbar support.  And I upgraded to rollerblade wheels, which are silky smooth and quiet.  A fantastic upgrade!
  • [Click here] I love the kneeling chair idea, and this one has held up for quite a while, but it’s starting to get a squeak that I can’t track down.

Desks … sitting and standing!

  • Romulus 59″ Farmhouse Dining Table (Wayfair). Spacious desktop is a must for me.
  • The desk is a used heavy metal unit that I got from a going-out-of-business sale. It’s very solid. The important addition is a doubled-up moving blanket over the top to reduce reflections and resonance. My studio space (containing 20 deep acoustic panels and two large bass traps to reduce reflections) is 10×12, so space for the table isn’t a problem.
  • Mine is just a slab of MDF and I bought legs for it. You can pretty much make a custom desk for $50. Most store bought desks are MDF anyway, but are over $100. Just throw a moving blanket remnant over it and a desk mat so you aren’t fiddling with a mouse pad and don’t have reflections. The combination of moving blanket and desk mat also stopped vibrations from working their way up the mic arm. If you choose metal legs, just wrap them in black gaffers tape. You can’t see the tape after, and it helps with a chance for reflections in a tight space.
  • RAB Audio ProRak LS840 Studio Workstation [Click here] Ergonomically nearly perfect – not too wide, super-sturdy, multi-level, keeps key hardware (interface, pre, patchbay etc) visible and accessible
  • Studio Trends 46″ Studio Desk With Dual 4 RU Racks Maple [Click here] -This desk is perfect for my setup.  I’ve got a 32′ curved monitor mounted on a clamp mount, so there’s plenty of room for speakers, external camera, light.  Plus the rack space is perfect for outboard gear like mic processor and a power strip. The main desktop allows me a laptop stand with a keyboard drawer for my main computer, and my Rodecaster Pro II
  • My desk setup is an IKEA Alex drawer unit [Click here] with two legs and a press-board (maybe MDF?) shelf for a top. The drawer unit is wildly handy, and the pressboard top can easily be cut to fit inside any dimension booth. It’s certainly stable enough to hold my boom arm and monitor shelf.
  • In my booth, I have a sturdy, little table that holds a standing desk topper (pre-standing desks). It’s draped with a moving blanket for sound purposes. This holds my second screen, a tablet with a cover that helps it stand upright for scripts or for holding printed scripts, mouse pad, a couple of small ducks (because who doesn’t love ducks?), clock, and lip balm.

Music stands

  • My music stand is the Manhaset Tall, it’s the only one I’ve found that works standing up. It also works sitting down of course.
  • Manhasset Music Stand the classic… tighten the bolts! weigh down with those dumbbells… again [Click here]
  • Manhasset Music Stand Extensionsthat stand needs to hold several pages of a score or the iPad and a clipboard with character notes… and other stuff [Click here]
  • Lamicall desktop stand.  (Best solution for displaying copy on a ten-inch tablet while editing audio.)

Mic stands

  • I have two Rode PSA-1 boom arms, one for a large condenser Neumann and one for a Sennheiser 416. I have a fairly low voice, and found that the boom arms were vibrating at certain frequencies.  I completely covered both boom arms with rigid slotted foam pipe insulation, and that solved the vibration/resonance problem.
  • Round base mic stand, BE SURE to use the dumbbell hand weights below to weigh them down when used with boom arms [Click here]
  • Boom Mic Arm desk mounted folding boom arm with extremely firm joints that stay in place, also has some cable ties so the mic cord doesn’t dangle [Click here]
  • Mic Stand Extension Tube – set of 4, 3″ extension tubes with mic threading and adaptors, makes it easier to get “just the right distance” for yourself, and others in the studio w/o having the mic stand tip over [Click here]
  • I had a $25 Amazon stand which worked fine, but I upgraded to a Rode PS1A+ arm that has worked great. It has quiet operation and is long enough to position for sitting or standing. The built in cable management clips were also a nice addition.
  • Rode PSA1 Desk-mounted Broadcast Microphone Boom Arm – to replace the floor-based mic stand that had a large footprint on the floor and would sag over time from the weight of the mic. The Rode Boom Arm is flexible and stays in place – it works so well for my small space! Highly recommend this!
  • On Stage MS7701B Tripod Microphone Boom Stand I bought off Amazon.  Perfect for my Sennheiser MKH-416 shotgun mic [Click here] I bought it off Amazon.  Perfect for my Sennheiser MKH-416 shotgun mic.  I don’t like booms that clamp to my desk due to unwanted noise from the springs.
  • My boom arm is not a traditional spring-loaded boom arm (I haven’t found a reliably steady one), but this instead: [Click here] It’s a bit finicky to set up and position, but once it’s in place, it’s not going anywhere. I have it in an overhead setup, so I don’t have to use a pop filter.

Monitors & stands

  • For my narration screen I use a 12×12-inch monitor (from a second-hand store for $25) hooked via a VGA cable as a remote monitor to an iMac. The monitor sits approximately a foot in front of my normal reading position and is slightly angled to reduce reflections to the microphone. I’ve had a couple of VO techs check my sound and it seems to pass muster.
  • I got a vertical laptop stand from Twelve South, the BookArc Flex. That way my laptop takes up minimal space in my booth. It stays upright on the floor, leaving my desk free for my monitor, keyboard, mouse etc. You can get it on Amazon or at the Apple Store. It’s really helped with organization.
  • MD8B-1 from Suptek has been very helpful. It’s fully posable and can also be pitched up to switch to a standing position. This was only $30 on Amazon.
  • ProLine Monitor Stands [Click here] Great adjustable monitor stands with locking pins. Very solid stands that get my monitor off the top tier of my workstation desk.  I use Auralex monitor wedges with these.
  • PreSonus Eris E 3.5 studio monitors. Gator Frameworks desktop studio monitor stands. (Heavy duty, well built to last, can handle heavy loads, pricey but worth it.)

Holders for headphones, glasses, cups…

  • A perch for your readers [Click here]
  • I use this stand! [Click here] I record inside my closet & this stand sits outside the “booth.” It’s perfect bc it holds my laptop & there’s a little spot for my interface as well. The wheels make it super easy to move around and adjust as needed. Also works well when I have to sit down on the couch for zoom classes.
  • A headphone clamp on the desk was a nice addition. Mine is a ZYM item number: EMCONTLHEADPST-1 and was only $13 on Amazon. It also has another clip for your headphone cables.
  • Ikea cup holder: [Click here] Keep that drink OFF the desk and prevent it being knocked over and ruining your life.
  • Clamp on Large Cup Holder [Click here] – Perfect for holding my LARGE daily cups of coffee and energy drinks without having to worry about anything spilling
  • Cell Phone Bracket Mount Gooseneck Stand [Click here]This is great for holding my cell phone while I work.  Keeps it at eye level and I can charge it at the same time.
  • Halter Laptop Riser With Keyboard Tray [Click here] I love this because it raises my laptop higher to make script reading easier.  Plus it holds my keyboard for my desktop computer.Attached to the boom arm listed above I have this for my iPad: [Click here] But I don’t actually clip my iPad to the holder—I turn it vertically and lean it back just a little bit, so I’m basically just setting my iPad on the bottom prongs, and it leans back on the others. I’m not doing any strenuous or exuberant tapping, so it stays in place just fine, and is dead simple to remove when I need to take my iPad somewhere else—it’s basically like setting it on a music stand.
  • Random useful item: [Click here] It’s a great place for my coffee mug to sit, and the headphone hanger was definitely useful for my recording headphones until I went to a monitor-based setup for recording (I still use my Sony MDR 7506s for editing auditions, but they hang on a hook velcroed to the wall behind me). I think now I hang a clicker from it, for duet narrations.
  • Audio Technica AT-HPH 300 headphone hanger.  (Saves space and always keeps your headphones safe and handy.  Pricey but worth it.)
  • Triad-Orbit Universal tablet holder.  (Used not for a tablet, but to mount an interface to a speaker stand.  Pricey, but, the best solution.)
  • Purely Gooseneck flexible tablet stand.  (Best flexible solution for mounting copy displayed on a ten-inch tablet above the microphone.)

Additional faves!

  • Ok, so it’s not furniture or mic stands BUT I do not enter my studio without a cup of Throat Coat Tea – like, a BIG mug of it. And the mug must be heavy so it holds the heat. But not one with a lid, because I burnt my tongue once (but that story is for another time.) So Throat Coat Tea in a big heavy mug!
  • To reduce reflections coming from the area behind my recording position, I mounted a heavy industrial curtain bar across the ceiling behind my reading position and hung a Producer’s Choice sound blanket on sliding hooks. When I’m recording I pull the curtain behind me; otherwise it is stowed to one side of the studio.
  • A recent addition (and a true gizmo) is a hand-held nebulizer with a miniature face mask. It lets me easily get some lubrication to the vocal folds. I drink two liters or more of water each day, but that doesn’t necessarily keep your vocal folds lubricated. I used to use a small “personal steamer” but this nebulizer is much easier, and runs off of a USB connection. The units you hear about from vocal coaches run $100 or more, but I got this one from Amazon for about $30 and it seems to do the trick. Can’t claim longevity yet, as I’ve only had it for two months.
  • Small Hanging Mirror. seeing my face and f****l expressions helps me get into each character quickly, chances are I’ve memorized crucial bits of text, and a glance up brings the character forward
  • 4″ paintbrush: A paintbrush is the OG for getting dust out and off of gear.
  • USB mini vacuum: [Click here]  Enter the new kid….the mini vacuum for desktop, floor etc. Charges on usb and one charge lasts forever.
  • giant desk mat: [Click here] quiet, comfy, reduces reflectionsMy favorite accessory is an on-air system to let everyone in the house know when we are recording. It is a combination of this police light, a smart outlet, and an Amazon Alexa routine. [Click here]   I set up the routine so when I say “Alexa, start recording”, the smart plug activates the lamp upstairs on our main floor, and also shuts off our HVAC.  When finished, “Alexa, stop recording” turns the lamp off and the HVAC back on.
  • Logitech Lift Mouse – I love how ergonomic this mouse is. In addition to VO, I play guitar and anything that causes strain in my hands or forearms adds up and can put me out of commission. I have small hands and most ergonomic computer accessories I’ve seen are much too bulky for me. Long editing sessions are no longer a pain.  I’m revamping my booth soon and I’m looking forward to seeing what other voice actors recommend from their experience!
  • I also like this wireless mouse and keyboard: [Click here] And this mouse pad that I customized with photos and words in Canva: [Click here]

This list can keep growing! If you have any suggestions to add, or if you update your studio from one of the suggestions above to an alternative you like even more, send it over to [email protected].

If you’re looking to improve your home studio gear or accessories, Harlan Hogan and VoiceOverEssentials is a one-stop shop for everything you could possibly need, and all selected by a VO pro. You can get a great value on some of their inventory when you visit through our link: