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Recording Narration in Windows Movie Maker

written by: Shane Burley•edited by: Rhonda Callow•updated: 7/1/2011

Learn how to record narration and voice over with Windows Movie Maker.

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    All You Need

    Windows Movie Maker wants to position itself as a full service application for those attempting to do basic home videos. You can layer out several clips, add effects and transitions, and export to a format that you can use later on. One thing that Windows Movie Maker includes that similar editing programs do not is a built in recording function for recording voice over or narration.

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    Recording Studio

    If you want to record narration for your video project first go to Tools in the upper task bar and then go down to the Narrate Timeline option. You are then taken to a menu that has an equalizer reading the strength and volume of sound coming in with a volume bar right next to it so you can control it. To the left is a button titled Start Narration. When you are ready to begin recording your narration you press the Start Narration and Windows Movie Maker begins recording from the on board microphone on your computer. If you do not have one, or want to just use an external microphone, plug it in to the appropriate spot and it will be picked up by Windows Movie Maker. If you do not see changes on the Input Level bar then Windows Movie Maker is not picking up your audio. To make sure that the correct microphone is picking up the audio you just go “more options” link in the lower left hand corner and look for the Audio Device pull down menu to the right. Here you can select the audio device that you would like to record with. Right below that is the Audio Input Source where you select exactly what microphone you will record with. The more options area will also let you limit the possible narration to free audio space in the Timeline and mute the speakers while doing this, though that is usually not a good idea.

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    Finishing Up

    Once you have finished the narration press the Stop Narration button and then a save menu comes up to save the narrative track as an audio file in a specially labeled file entitled Narration. If you then press the “done” option in the lower left hand corner of the narration recording display you will be taken back to the normal Collections window and the audio track of that narration will be present.