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How to Record and Add a Voiceover in iMovie

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Mar 27, 2024• Proven solutions

iMovie allows you record a voiceover either to illustrate the movie scenes or as a comment. Why not use this great iMovie voiceover function? With a built-in or external microphone, it is very easy to narrate a movie and add your voice anywhere you want in your video by adding a voiceover in iMovie. Check out this tutorial to learn how to record a voiceover in iMovie and add a voiceover to your iMovie videos.

Using a Windows PC? Don't worry, check the Best iMovie Alternatives for Windows to figure out how to add voiceover to video.

Part 1: How to Do a Voiceover in Movie Using iMovie Alternative [3 Steps]

Download Win VersionDownload Mac Version

Before we get started, I want to recommend one of the best iMovie alternatives to do voiceover. To help you add voiceover successfully, I recommend an iMovie alternative - Wondershare Filmora for Mac to record and add voiceover to video. It's very convenient! Now let's see how to record and add voiceover in iMovie's alternative Filmora for Mac.

Step 1. Import your videos to Video Editor

Download and run this software, then import your source videos by clicking File > Add File or locate your videos by the browser to load files from iTunes library, Photo Booth, etc.

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Step 2. Record your voiceover

Hit the "Voice Over" button on the toolbar to add a voiceover to your video. Choose your input device and click the red button to start or end recording. When you finish it, hit the "Done" button to save the recording.

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Step 3. Export the new file

After recording the voiceover, hit "Export" to save the new file. You can either save it in different formats, upload to YouTube immediately or burn to DVD.

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Check the video below to see what Filmora can do for you.

Download Win VersionDownload Mac Version

Part 2: How to Record and Add a Voiceover in iMovie

In this part, I will show you how to do voiceover narration in iMovie (both iMovie version 9/11/10). If you are not sure which version you are using, go to the iMovie menu and select About iMovie to check. Since I am using the iMovie 10.1.8, I will show you how to record voiceover and add it to video in iMovie 10 first.

Section 1: How to record and add voiceover in iMovie 10

Recording and adding your own voiceover narration in iMovie 10 is simple, just follow the steps below:

Step 1. Enter the Record Voiceover feature

After importing media to the timeline, place the Playhead to the position where you want to add the voiceover, and then click the Record Voiceover icon below the preview windows.

 iMovie 10 voiceover recording

Step 2. Adjust voiceover recording settings

Now you can adjust the narration recording settings before recording:

Click the Voiceover Option icon and then you can select the desired Input Source and change the voiceover volume as well. Just drag the volume slider right or left to increase or decrease the recording volume. If you check the Mute Project checkbox, iMovie will mute sound from clips when recording, which is normally recommended during recording.

 iMovie 10 voiceover recording

Step 3. Start and stop voiceover recording

Click the red Record button to start voiceover recording. Click the Record button again to stop recording and the recorded voiceover will appear in the timeline as a new audio clip. After recording all the voiceover narration, click the Done button to the right of the voiceover recording controls.

Above are the steps of how to do voiceover narration recording in iMovie 10. If you have not updated to this version yet, you can check the information below about how to do voiceover on iMovie 11 and iMovie 9.

Section 2: How to do voiceover narration in iMovie 9/11

Related: How to Add Subtitles to Videos and Movies in iMovie

Step 1. Open the voiceover window and choose your microphone

Click the Voiceover button which looks like a microphone in the toolbar and you will see a Voiceover menu shown like below. You can choose built-in microphone or use other microphone connected to your Mac.

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Step 2. Select your recording settings

Drag the slider to set the input volume of your recording. You can also use the noise reduction and voice enhancement functions to help you record a better voiceover in iMovie.

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You may also like: How to Remove Background Noise from Videos

Step 3. Record voiceover in iMovie

Click any video clip to start recording a voiceover in iMovie. After the voiceover settings, the preview window will give you the instruction, asking you to click a clip to start recording.

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When you are recording, a red shadow will cover the video clip to show that you are recording. To stop a voiceover recording, you can click anywhere in the project. The finished voiceover will appear in a purple icon below the videos where your voiceover is added. You can drag the slider to extend or shorten the voiceover. To adjust the voiceover in iMovie, you can choose the voiceover clip, hit the gear in the front and choose Clip Trimmer, Clip Adjustments, and Audio Adjustments to make modifications to the iMovie voiceover. You may also need Fade in and Fade out Audio Files in iMovie.

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Related: How to Add Background Music to iMovie

So, above are the steps about how to do voiceover narration in iMovie and iMovie alternative Filmora for Mac. If you are wondering why Filmora for Mac is recommended, you can download it to have a try right now.

FAQs About Adding a Voiceover in iMovie

We have summarized some of the most frequently asked questions about adding voiceover in iMovie, hope that helps. 

1. How to record a voiceover in iMovie?

You have to go through three simple steps to record a voiceover in iMovie. After adding the footage to the timeline, you need to position the playhead at the point in the video where you want the narration to start.

Proceed to mute the audio of the footage you added to the project and adjust the volume at which the voiceover is going to be recorded from the Voiceover option menu. Start the voiceover recording session by clicking on the Record button.

2. How to record a voiceover in iMovie from an iPhone?

The process of recording a voiceover in iMovie from a Mac and an iPhone is identical, as you just have to create a new project, add video clips to the timeline and place the playhead at the point in the video where you want the voiceover to start.

Then just tap on the Record Voiceover button that looks like a microphone. Tap on the Stop button when you’re done and review the recording to detect mistakes. If you want to record another voiceover, you should tap on the Retake button.

3. Why can’t I record a voiceover in iMovie?

iMovie won’t allow you to record a voiceover if it doesn’t recognize the microphone you are speaking into. Also, you should check if the timeline volume is muted as this is often the reason why iMovie’s users cannot hear the voiceover they recorded.

In some cases, third-party plug-ins can cause certain iMovie’s features to malfunction. Disable all iMovie plug-ins and check if the Voiceover feature is functioning.

4. How to allow iMovie access to a microphone?

You can fix this issue by clicking on the Microphone icon and then selecting a microphone you will be used to record a voiceover in the Record from drop-down menu. You should then speak into the microphone and use the audiometer to check if it is picking up sounds. If the bars in the audiometer remain static while you are speaking, that means that iMovie still doesn’t have access to your microphone and you need to check if it is properly connected to the computer.

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Shanoon Cox
Shanoon Cox is a writer and a lover of all things video.
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