The 10 second audio rule

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“I hate having to start over when I make a mistake!”

“It takes forever to review the footage to find the right places to cut in special audio sounds.”

“Getting rid of background noise can be so hard.”

I hear you. Cutting audio can take forever and stopping to re-record can be a massive pain! But, you don’t have to do any of that if you’re using the 10 second recording rule.

All it takes is counting to 10 at a normal pace in your head (not out loud). Don’t count wildly fast like an auctioneer or super duper slow like Eeyore.

1. Once you hit record, don’t speak, just count to 10.

This will allow you the space you need to highlight any background noise where you’re recording. While you should already be in the quietest location you can find (in my last home, I used my car in the garage, not only because it’s quiet, but also because the acoustics are amazing!)

After you have recorded, whatever it is that you are recording, the background sounds like a whirring air conditioner, can be removed much easier because the audio editing software can find it, isolate it and remove it.

2. Every time you need to cut in a special sound, count to 10.

Depending on what it is that you are recording, you may want some additional sounds as part of your finished product. Maybe you want to add in audience noises, or beeps and bells sounds for different things, or Mr T saying, “I pity the fool!”

Whatever the reason, just stop talking and count to 10 where you want the new sound added. When your audio or video is being edited, it’s easy for your editor to hunt through the audio drops than listen to the entire recording.

3. You messed up! Just count to 10.

You do not need to stop everything and restart your recording when you make a mistake. It’s all good. Keep going!

Just count to 10 before you start again AND (this is important), make sure you say “Starting again” just before you start again. This will help your editor to know that they have to go back and find the audio they need to delete.

Not only does it make it easier to get the footage cut, but it also make it faster!

I’d love to hear any tips you have on recording audio, just comment below.



Amanda Ross is the President of SparkologyLab (SL) and the creator of Brand In A Snap (a division of SL). She loves designing stuff in the digital space, trying different curry recipes, and squishing her puppy, Buffy (the people slayer). The topics she shares about are design how-to's, marketing, and digital tips. You can learn more about her on LinkedIN:

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