If you’ve been on TikTok lately, you know that open verse challenges are the hot new trend for musicians. Singers, rappers, and producers have been posting their new music with space for TikTokers to hop on and add their own verse. You may have come across some open verse challenge duets that are using studio microphones, autotune, and professional sounding mixing.
If you’re looking to add tuning and effects to your TikTok duets, this step by step guide will help you make it happen! The process is a little long, but on an app like TikTok, having great sound can be the difference between your duet flopping or going viral. Follow these steps to get high quality, mixed audio on your TikTok duets!
1: Download the original video and save the sound to your favorites
Press and hold on the video you want to download, then hit “Save Video.” This will add the video to your camera roll. Before you close the app, click on the sound icon (bottom right, shaped like a vinyl record) and hit the “Add to Favorites” button.
2. Get the video to your DAW
If you have an iPhone and a Mac, the easiest way to do this is with AirDrop. If you don’t, you can upload the clip to Dropbox or email it to yourself. Once the video is on your computer, most DAWs will let you drop the file right into an empty session.
If you’re using Pro Tools, make sure the “Import Audio from File” option is selected.
If you’re using Logic, select the frame rate that matches your movie’s frame rate (it should be 30)
.Now that the video and audio are in your DAW, make sure to nudge the files over to the very start of the session. Here’s what you’ll see in Pro Tools…
…and here’s what it looks like in Logic Pro.
3. Record and mix your vocals
Take your time on this step! You’re looking to stand out in an app where attention spans are very short, so make sure you write something extra fire.
Now, you can create a new audio track in your DAW and record your vocals. If you need tips on recording vocals, check out this video here!
For this example, I just went with Waves Tune Realtime, a compressor (H-Comp), and some EQ (Q8). I also added a little reverb with Soundtoys’ Little Plate. Normally, I’d put the reverb on an AUX track, but since we’re just mixing one track of vocals, it’s fine to put it right on the track inserts. Now that you’re happy with your vocals, go ahead and export them from your DAW.
4. Film yourself singing along with your new duet
Now that you’ve got an audio file of your vocals combined with the instrumental, it’s time to create your half of the video. Once you’ve picked a location to film and set up your phone or camera, press record and then press play on your audio file. It’s important to start recording your video before you start the audio, because you’ll need the extra space at the start of your video when you go to edit.
5. Combine the audio and both videos to create your final duet
Now that you have 2 clips (your performance and the original TikTok) plus an audio file (your vocals added to the original TikTok audio), it’s time to create the finished video file.
Using the same method from step 2, get your performance video onto your computer. Create a new project file, and choose the vertical setting for the dimensions (I’m using Final Cut Pro, but you can use iMovie, Davinci Resolve, or even an app like InShot). The dimensions you’ll want to use are 1080x1920.
Drop both video files into the timeline, and resize them to 50%. Then move them apart on the X axis so you have both clips side by side in the middle of the screen.
Next, drop in your recorded audio!
Now you’ll have three files in your video editing timeline. You will need to nudge your performance video around until the audio syncs up with the prerecorded audio, then you can mute the audio of your two video clips! Now that you’ve done this, you’re ready to export the video and send it to your phone.
6: Upload and post to TikTok
Now that you’ve got your finished video on your phone, it’s time to open up TikTok! Hit the upload button, and make sure to select 60s so you can add your entire video. Select your clip, then add some text to the top or bottom if you’d like!
Now, you need to connect your video to the sound of the video you’re duetting. Hit the “Sounds” icon on the bottom left, then choose the original sound from your favorites. Hit the volume button, then slide the “Added sound” level to zero.
Once you’ve done that, hit the “next” button and add your caption.
You’ll want to start your caption with “#duet with” followed by tagging the user you’re dueting. Then, add the rest of your caption and hashtags, and select the cover. Now you’re ready to hit the post button!
While it may take much longer than using earbuds or the built-in mic on your phone, making your duets this way will make sure that you stand out from the crowd and sound professional! Now go find some amazing songs to make into duets!
About the author:
Adam Sliger is a songwriter and producer from Central Florida. Sliger started his producing career in 2012. Besides writing songs and producing, he also writes for Make That Louder, a site for music gear and plugin reviews.