It’s possible to make your own radio jingles on your computer in the comfort of your own home.
Sound Card & Headphones
I’m going to make the assumption that you have a computer with sound card and a set of speakers or, even better, a set of professional headphones. If you don’t have a decent sound card you can look into the Sound Blaster range from Creative. If you’re using a laptop or notebook the sound quality from Creative’s Sound Blaster X-Fi Notebook card is far superior to the majority of internal laptop sound cards. If you want to go for the best then the M Audio Delta 66 sound card and break out box is fantastic in my opinion. Studio quality headphones for jingle production can be obtained from beyerdynamic. The beyerdynamic DT 100 headphones are standard in many radio stations, DT 250 are a step up in quality and my personal favourites are the DT 770 PRO headphones
Free Radio Jingle Software
If you’d like to record, edit, mix and loop you can’t get better than the free audio editor Audicity available from SoundForge. It’s open-source software meaning a team of programmers are constantly making it better. It’s perfect for basic radio jingle editing.
Recommended Jingle Software
If you’ve got a few bucks to spend check out Adobe Audition. You’ll find pretty much every radio station has the software installed in their production studios and on radio producer’s desktop computers. You can record, edit audio, mix it in the multitrack mode, add stunning vocal effects, compression, EQ and more with Adobe Audition (formerly known as Cool Edit Pro).
Professional Jingle Sowtware
If you want to go pro and have the budget to match then Pro Tools is for you. If you choose Pro Tools it would also pay to have extra hardware such as a top of the range sound card, mixing desk, pro microphone and speakers. Pro Tools has a clean, easy to use interface and many special effects, filters and tricks. It’s used in all the big audio production houses. Update: Since writing this Avid, the makers of Pro Tools, have released a very affordable package called Pro Tools Essentials Recording Studio. Great if you’re getting started making jingles – check it out!
If you’d like a voice over free of charge to use in your radio jingles take a look at our blog. It contains numerous free downloads of dry voice overs which can then be mixed into radio jingles. All the downloads contain common phrases and radio idents.
Free Music Beds
You can find free music beds to download online from Shockwave Sound. There may be copyright restrictions on usage so please check the terms for your proposed usage.
Radio Sound Effects
You can get a good radio production library (stingers, swooshes, stabs, beeps, static etc.) for the price of a music album. A couple of good websites for radio sound effects are Pro Sound Effects and AudioJungle. The latter is an online community of quality sound effect producers meaning you may contribute as well as take.
Buy A Radio Jingle
Finally, if you’d like your own custom radio jingle professionally produced. You can make a jingle on the Music Radio Creative website. All you need to do is type your script in and select dry voice, sfx and/or music bed and get an instant online quote for your production requirements.