German voice actor Christian Büsen

Christian Büsen, “der sprecher”, has been a professional german voice actor working for corporate clients, institutions, radio and TV since 1999.
He has a recording studio of his own.

Additional Information


Christian Büsen

is a professional German voice talent with a recording studio of his own.                                                                                                                                                            


Native German voice talent since 1999

Christian Büsen has been making voice recordings for numerous clients since 1999. He narrates documentaries and explainer videos, records commercials and is a voice actor for audio books and other projects as a professional German voice actor. Here you can find audio samples and book the voice over artist called der Sprecher.


Recording studio

Almost no personal production studios before 1990

Historically, almost no (German) voice talent had their own recording studio. The equipment was too expensive so the voice talent used to record at an external studio. The voice actors went in person to a recording studio for all projects. Since about 1990, the technical demands simplified, since computers replaced the expensive magnetic tape machines. More people could afford the equipment, some of them with significant radio or TV experience.

   20230312 studio 039 foto holger schneider

The music taxi

From then on, voice actors started with their own voice booth and equipment. The voice talent could now be booked by a recording studio far away. The studio recorded the voice talent via "music taxi" (ISDN), did all the necessary audio mixing and then finally delivered the project to the client. In the beginning, this especially affected voice over work for radio ads and TV spots.


Broadband connections

Nowadays, voice talent most likely uses broadband connections. Some of them are browser-based, others work like a plugin. With rising Internet speeds, video footage can be transmitted as well. The pandemic led to a growing demand for film or video recordings that were done in the studio of the German voice talent. Many videos, TV documentaries, films, and corporate videos were done via Internet since that time. The major advantage is that the director or client can listen in, and hears the voice talent at optimal quality levels while giving their directions.

   20230312 studio 034 foto holger schneider

The job of a professional German voice talent

Professional voice over talents record documentaries for TV, explainer videos, corporate videos, product videos, audio books, e-learning videos, video games and radio plays. If you are looking for a German voice over for your production, the voice recordings can be done in this studio by a native voice over talent.

While a more complex production is still most likely to be recorded in external studios, many voice artists now produce their recordings themselves in their own booths.

  20230312 studio 150 foto holger schneider

How to become a voice actor

People often say: Every person is able to speak, so what makes a professional voice artist? In fact, there are a few aspects that make audio projects forvoice talent different from everyday conversation:

Difficulties with voice over work

  • Almost no voice recordings are by heart: 97% are script reads.

  • It should not sound like reading aloud, rather like talking to people.

  • As voice over talent, I have no real people as an audience.

  • On product videos or explainer videos, there might be a timecode to respect.

   20230312 studio 058 foto holger schneider

Training fields for a prospective voice talent

To become a voice actor, different fields of training are necessary, such as

  • voice training

  • breath training

  • elocution training

  • training accent free phonetics

  • relation to the listener (response)

  • reading in a lively manner from a script

  • training impulses

  • changes in tempo and rhythm

  • training to get a feeling for pauses (rest signs)

  • stressing the target words

  20230312 studio 143 foto holger schneider

Where do voice actors learn

Some voice overs come from an acting school, were educated in elocution, or worked at a radio station. The use of job titles such as German voice talent, voice artist, voice over or voice actor is not regulated. Due to this lack of restriction, German voice talents can enter the voice over business via different paths. Career changers, actors, students of elocution, and radio employees all work in this business.


How to discern quality

The more professionalism you expect of the German voice talent for your project, the more you should have a look at the education of the voice talent. Are they a native German speaker? What about advanced training in phonetics?

If clients are looking for a truly accent free e-learning video, corporate video, or TV project, it is a good idea to have a closer look into the talent's CV. It is not only about being accent free.

   20230312 studio 048 foto holger schneider

Professional voice over needs accuracy

Even a native German speaker doesn't always know how to pronounce certain German words, a proper name, or how to stress a quite common German word such as "aktuell" correctly. This and many other important abilities as described above can be learned with specific training. If your projects are a translation from another language, it is advisable to have a native German voice over talent to double-check for translation issues- especially if the translator wasn't a native German speaker.


Pricing in Germany

A German voice actor will most likely use a common rate sheet such as that of the German Speaker´s Association. Its name is Sprecherverband, or VDS. German voice over talents sometimes use the rate sheet of the German agency Brilliant Voice. Of course, no German voice over artist is committed to these recommendations. However, they provide a good guideline when quoting your projects.

   Screenshot 2023 03 24 141249vds

The target market is Germany

The basis for your calculation should always be the target market. If Germany is the target market of your e-learning, corporate video or other project, then a German rate sheet should apply. Of course, rates in Germany might be different from those in other countries, but they are also similar to many European countries. What is important to understand about the rates in Germany: The German voice over talent will always take the use of their voice in different projects into consideration.

   20230312 studio 079 foto holger schneider

Different types of usage

If you hire a German voice actor for German voice over for your e-learning project, for example, this would most likely stay internal, within the company's intranet, and would not be published on a public website. Therefore, the German voice talent would charge only the internal fee for your e-learning project. A corporate video however, would be shown on the Internet, as it has an advertising purpose. The German voice over talent would now charge the corporate fee, which has no limitations concerning duration of usage. TV spots as well as paid media videos like on YouTube, would be charged by German voice talent for each year of usage. If you are not familiar with the pricing and need some help understanding the rate sheet correctly, the voice talent will surely help you and calculate only the type of usage, that you really need for your project.

   Screenshot 2023 03 24 145234 paid

Working as a translator for voice over

Working as a translator on a translation for voice over has a few special aspects. In my experience, there is sometimes a lack of knowledge regarding timed projects, such as films with a foreign speaker, that are now adapted for Germany. Its not their translation ability, rather their ability with timed translation.

   20230312 studio 167 foto holger schneider

Everything is important... but too long

Clients often do not want to shorten anything within their script, and a translator of course wants to translate each project in a very precise way, without inaccuracies. If the German voice project was in English originally, we might get into trouble now.

As a video has a fixed timecode and often the film material cannot be extended, the German voice talent has to make all concepts fit into the timeline.

   20230312 studio 163 bearbietet foto holger schneider

German is more complicated

A German script is up to 20 percent longer than its English equivalent. In German, not only are more words are used, but German words are also longer. So even if the number of words in a German text would not exceed the reference film script too much, the words have more syllables and the grammar in German
is more complex.

The number of characters should be similar

A comparison of the number of characters gives a better clue then the number of words. I have seen many translations where this aspect wasn´t given
adequate attention.

   20230312 studio 045 foto holger schneider

Good communication and knowledge make the process easier

Therefore, good communication between the client, translator and German voice talent should take place from the very beginning. It can make the whole process
more efficient and less time-consuming for all participants.


Voice recordings in the studio

The recording room not only shuts out external noise, it is also a semi-anechoic room with no reverberations or flutter echoes. State of the art is a Neumann TLM 103. Of course, there are many other good microphones I will not name. But, as always, the cheap ones will have a lack of dynamic range and often produce a hiss. A German voice actor for your clients' projects will probably have found the microphone that best suits their voice. The second important bit of audio gear is the microphone preamp, which enhances the microphone signal.

The audio interface finally converts the analog signal into a digital signal, which allows us to work on it in the DAW (digital audio work station) of the computer. However, the recording room is the perhaps most important factor. A voice booth is convenient in the sense that the voice talent can easily move its location. But as these booths are often designed to conserve space, they are quite small and this has an audible effect. Therefore, a good, professionally treated room tops the voice booth in terms of sound quality.

   20230312 studio 082 foto holger schneider

How a voice recording is done

The first steps in a professional voice artist's work are to mark up the script to indicate which syllables to stress, and to discuss the delivery style with the client. If there are any pronunciation questions, these can be discussed at this time. Once the script has been recorded, the recording is edited.  Mistakes are cut out and breathing sounds attenuated or removed, if necessary.


Mastering the voice over recording

The voice talent also applies an equalizer or compressor during postproduction to optimize the sound. The equalizer is used to adjust the relative volume of selected frequency ranges. The compressor balances the large dynamic range of the voice recording by amplifying quieter parts and dampening louder ones.

   20230312 studio 024 foto holger schneider

Delivery of the voice recording

The finished audio file is usually delivered via the Internet. Thanks to increasing bandwidths, delivery even in uncompressed formats such as WAV or AIFF is no longer a problem.

Professional voice actors often receive orders from other countries. Delivery via the Internet is the most convenient solution. Generally an FTP upload is the best choice, especially with larger audio files


The need for German voice over talent

Voice talents deliver their recordings worldwide. The dialogue with clients is usually in English; the voice recording is done in the voice talent's native language. In English, there are various translations of the term “deutscher Sprecher”.

“German voice talent” is frequently used. Another term is “German voice actor.” However, the latter definition tends to emphasize acting capability, such as lip-syncing or cartoon dubbing. “German voice talent” is the more commonly used term. Sometimes, “German voice artist,” “German voiceover talent” or simply “German voiceover” are used.

   20230312 studio 098 foto holger schneider