The setup. The gear. The tech. The equipment. The microphone and what it runs through. It can build a voice artist or tear one down. Some studios make you feel all warm and present. They make folks sit up and toss an ear your way. Others make you sound distant and cold. Sure, these experiences are subjective, for if they weren’t why would those sound engineers not do more to make their setup sound more warm and inviting. Allow me to put some context to it. I work in studios where I love the sound of the final product. I can hear it sounds brilliant up close and personal in the monitors. Then there are studios that make you sound, no matter how hard you may try not to, like a sad inexperienced newcomer. I call those “voice god studios”. Why do I call them that? Because the only people who has got a snow ball’s chance in hell of pulling off a proper recording there are voice gods. Those few voices out there that sound great on any mic and setup. Folks who could do an amazing voiceover speaking into a soda can. I hate recording in such studios. You cringe when the booking comes through because not only do you know you sound awful on the setup, you know some ignorant people will hear it and blame YOU. Not only do those studios kill your voice, they can kill future bookings.
Luckily there aren’t many such studios.