Why Does My Singing Sound Awful Recorded? ( Top 10 Reasons )

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Beginner singers are often confused as to why they sound so different on each of their recordings. This is a very common problem for beginner singers and some have a very difficult time either trying to explain to themselves why they do not sound good on recordings or they blame it on the song. Although most beginner singers get stuck at this point, there are a lot of reasons why they do not sound good when recorded, oftentimes it is not just one cause but most likely several causes that hinder their voice quality once it is recorded.

When listening to recordings of your voice, you might notice that it sounds different than what you’re accustomed to. This occurs because recordings lack the internal resonance and bone conduction that influence how your voice is perceived. However, it’s important to remember that the way your voice sounds on recordings is how others perceive it in real life. Although it may initially seem unfamiliar, understanding this discrepancy can help you gain a more accurate perception of your own voice.

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In today’s world, it is way too easy to simply download a singing app and modify your voice so it sounds better. However, if you are a serious singer who actually dreams of a career in singing then this is one of the worst things you can do as a beginner singer. The problem is that once you get used to your recorded voice being modified by autotune-like software you will have an extremely hard time facing the reality that you are in fact not that good when you are singing live.

This is why you will see a lot of people with absolutely no singing talent go to singing auditions and they simply get wrecked by the staff. Not only they are delusional singers who do rely on software to make them sound good but they are absolutely convinced that they actually have a good voice until they start singing live. Although this is typical of our modern way of life, as most people stay on social media for fake internet points and they will do anything to get them, including modifying their voice and photoshopping their images.

Why Does My Singing Sound Awful Recorded

It is common for many people to feel that their singing sounds different or even “awful” when recorded. This perception can be attributed to several factors. First, when you sing, you hear your voice through bone conduction, which creates a richer, fuller sound than what is captured by a recording device. Second, recording equipment may not accurately capture the nuances and nuances of your voice, resulting in a less flattering representation of your singing.

Additionally, listening to a recording of your own voice can be a somewhat subjective experience, and self-criticism or insecurities about your singing abilities may play a role in perceiving it as sounding “awful.” Remember that recording quality, microphone placement, and acoustics can all influence the way your voice is captured.

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You Sound Awful Because Are Not Used To Hearing Your Recorded Voice

It is normal when you first listen to your recorded voice to find it weird or even awful. Most beginner singers focus on practicing and once they start recording their singing they find it awful simply due to the fact that they are not used to listening to their own voice. This is also true even if you are not singing, while most people are used to hearing their own voice through messaging apps they rarely listen to their voice recorded with an actual microphone.

If you find your voice awkward or even awful at first you will have to give it some time, listen to your recordings a couple of times every day. In one week this awkward feeling when you listen to yourself will go away and only then you should start focusing on the other aspects of why you sound awful on recordings.

Dehydration Can Make Your Singing Sound Bad Recorded

Hydration plays a big part in singing, while you are singing you probably do not notice how detrimental the effects of dehydration are but once you listen to your recording you will find that your voice is awful. If you want to know which types of drinks are best for your recorded voice, check out my recent article Best drink for singing voice? ( Top 13 drinks to help your voice ). When it comes to hydration it is vital that you take small sips often, rather than drinking a lot of water in one go.

Singing From The Throat And Not From The Diaphragm

One of the biggest mistakes which will make your singing voice sound awful is that you are singing from your throat, rather than from your diaphragm. If you are serious about singing you must learn how to sing from the diaphragm. While you might even not notice that you are not singing from the diaphragm as a beginner singer you will definitely notice the detrimental effects of singing from the throat on your recordings.

If you want to know how much of a difference between singing from the throat and from the diaphragm, then check out my recent article Singing from diaphragm vs throat ( Which one is better? ).

Using A Low-quality Microphone

One of the main reasons why your singing sounds awful when recorded is that you are not using a high-quality microphone. Most people use whatever they have on hand to record their singing, oftentimes they use their mobile phones to record their songs which are not made for singers and will definitely make you sound weird and awkward. If you are one of those singers who do record themselves on their phones do not worry and simply try a more professional microphone.

Professional microphones do cost a lot of money, however generally speaking they do come with specialized software that does a lot of things when it comes to improving the quality of your recorded singing. While most will not actually change your voice, they will cut out background noise and even help you with the pitch. If you find that your singing still sounds awful when you are recorded it probably means that you will need to step your singing game up and practice to get better.

Not all microphones made for singers are good for every singer, some focus more on recording the higher notes clearly while others focus on recording deeper voices clearly. There is no point for me in saying which microphone is the best, odds are that your voice is not well suited for the same microphone. As a beginner singer, you should identify your vocal type and range, only after that go and search for a microphone which in fact will benefit and enhance your voice once it is recorded.

If you as a singer are looking for a good microphone you will see a lot of fairly expensive microphones, my recommendation is to get a condenser microphone as these are specially made for singers and your singing voice will actually sound a lot better once recorded.

Not Using A Pop Filter

As a singer you will definitely need a good pop filter, this is the small membrane placed in front of the microphone which removes all the popping sounds which you make while singing. You as a singer will produce these sounds once you are singing, and while you are breathing. It is extremely detrimental for a singer not to use a pop filter as you will sound extremely weird on recordings. Oftentimes one of the mistakes which beginner singers make is that they stay way too close to the pop filter, while you are singing you are exhaling a lot of water outside and if yous stay too close to the pop filter then this will become wet and moist.

If you notice that the pop filter is wet then you will either have to change it to a dry one or let it dry. Once the pop filter is wet it will start to vibrate and it will not be able to filter out the popping sounds, in fact, it will enhance them and add a weird vibrating sound effect to your recordings.

Bad Recording Software

There are a lot of softwares that do allow you to record your singing, however, most of them are not made for singers rather than for streamers or for people who speak in public. Softwares that are made for streamers are not good as the software has a dual purpose, to record the voice of the streamer and to record the sounds of the actual game which are streaming. If you as a singer will try out one of these streaming softwares you will find that your voice quality while recorded is awful and there is a lot of background noise also being recorded.

If you are searching for a good recording software you will probably see a lot of free apps on your phone which all claim to be the best. If you are serious about singing my recommendation is to avoid these as much as you can. Not only because these free apps only work on your phone, which doesn’t have the best microphone for recording your singing, but also because they will modify your voice to sound actually better than it really is.

My recommendation is that once you have identified your voice type and have already purchased a good microphone to take a look at the people who are actually using them simply search for the recording software which they are using.

Recording In The Wrong Place

A lot of beginner singers record themselves where ever they feel the most comfortable, however, most surroundings are not well suited for recording your singing and you will sound awful in these recordings even if you are a talented singer. Once you have got a good microphone, pop filters, and recording software it is imperative to think where you will actually record your singing as this will also impact the quality of your voice.

Now I am not saying that you should build yourself a soundproof room, however, a couple of sound-absorbing materials will be extremely beneficial for the quality of your recordings. You can get these extremely cheap at any mall, just get some glue and stick it on the wall right next to where your microphone is. As for how many of these sound-absorbing materials you need, you will have to figure it out or take advice from some sound engineering forums or sites.

Singing Out Of Tune

One of the reasons why you sound awful on recordings is probably because you are singing out of tune. While you are singing you are probably thinking that this will be an amazing recording, and once you listen to it you will have to face the reality that you are singing out of tune. However singing out of tune doesn’t necessarily mean that you are a bad singer, it simply means that you will have to practice a lot more to sing in tune.

If you are a beginner singer then my recommendation is to read my recent article How to sing for beginners step by step ( 14 Easy Steps ), this way you will learn how to sing in tune correctly.

Bad Singing Posture

Posture has a lot of importance when it comes to the quality of your voice if you are laying down on your bed and recording yourself like that you will find that your voice sounds probably awful. The main reason is that you do not let your diaphragm and lungs work to produce a high-quality sound. If you are recording your singing it is vital that you stand upright and relax, too much tension in your body will also hinder the quality of your voice.

Picking the wrong song

If you are a beginner singer, sooner or later you will learn and know your limits. If you try recording yourself by singing a song that isn’t well suited to your voice then you probably will sound awful. You need to experiment until you find your true voice, and your true voice needs to sound good both when singing live or when listening to your own recordings.

Key Takeaways

  • Your singing sounds awful recorded because you are not used to hearing your voice, you are dehydrated, you are singing from the throat and not from the diaphragm, you have a bad recording microphone, don’t have a pop filter, you have bad recording software, you are recording in the wrong places, you are singing out of tune, you are not having a good posture and because you picked the wrong song.
  • Hearing your singing recorded may sound different and sometimes less appealing due to various factors such as microphone quality, room acoustics, and personal perception.
  • When singing, we often hear a combination of our voice’s vibrations through bone conduction and the sound waves traveling through the air. However, a recording only captures the sound waves, which can lead to a different perception of your voice.
  • It’s common for singers to feel uncomfortable or critical of their recorded voice at first.


Why do I hate my singing in recordings?

Hearing your singing voice recorded can sound different from what you perceive when singing. This difference in perception, combined with self-criticism and the unfamiliarity of hearing your own voice, can contribute to a negative reaction.

How can I make my singing sound better on a recording?

To improve the sound of your singing on recordings, ensure you have good microphone technique, record in a suitable environment with minimal background noise, and consider using post-recording techniques like EQ and compression during the mixing and mastering process to enhance the overall sound quality.

Why do I hate the sound of my recorded voice?

The recorded voice can sound different from what you’re accustomed to hearing due to factors such as bone conduction and resonances in your own head. This discrepancy between your internal perception and the external recording can lead to a dislike of your recorded voice.

Do singers hate their recorded voice?

It’s common for singers to initially feel uncomfortable or dissatisfied with their recorded voice due to the unfamiliarity of hearing themselves outside of their own perception. However, with time and experience, singers can develop a more accepting and objective view of their recorded voice.