About / FAQ’s

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The Studio

DSB Audio is an Ireland-based audiobook narration and production company, founded in 2018 by David Sweeney-Bear, serving worldwide clients from self-published indie authors to major publishers alike.

With a growing portfolio of audiobooks, from short stories to plays to full novels, all produced to the very highest industry standards in a purpose-built fully equipped digital recording studio, DSB Audio can undertake the full production from manuscript to finished product.

The Voice

David Sweeney-Bear’s life-long love of literature began at an early age, having grown up in an environment drenched in the works of some of the world’s greatest writers and poets. Shakespeare, Tennyson, Samuel Taylor Coleridge as well as Orwell, Dickens and Oscar Wilde were familiar names to him even at tender age of 7.

In his teens, David attended stage school and discovered a love of acting and drama, before settling into his long-term passion – music.

There  followed some 25 years of songwriting, singing and live performance of his own original music as well as tenures in various bands. From day one, a large part of this musical journey involved audio production, from the very early days of home demo’s with two tape recorders, through studying audio recording at college to finally producing his own albums with a mix of digital and analogue technology.

From 2018 onwards, David has been concentrating on audiobook production, fine-tuning his narration and  production skills,  recording free audiobooks of some of his favourite classic books and poetry as well as a diverse range of commercial audiobooks.

Reviews & Testimonials

“The deep voice of David Sweeney-Bear is perfect for narrating these haunting stories. My only complaint is that the book came to an end way too soon.” (Embrace The Darkness) – lisaswritopia.com


“The challenge of “Ashik-Kerib” is that it is a very old tale, adapted and retold by a writer with a fairly modern manner of expression. As the narrator, David had to find just the right balance between the story’s sense of age and ethnic flavor and still making it fresh for today’s listeners. I believe he accomplished this and much more. In his interpretation, the story truly took on a third dimension, becoming a bright, savory listening experience.” – Maria K


What are your rates for Production and Narration?

Finished narration and production generally ranges from $200 – $400 Per Finished Hour of audio. The rate charged depends on the nature and complexity of the work. For example, a non-fiction title with no character voices or research required would cost $200 PFH whereas a novel with multiple characters and accents might cost between $250 – $300. A very complex production with added sound effects, music or multiple narrators could be $400 PFH or more. I can give an accurate costing once the project has been outlined to me.

Can you provide a sample for my audiobook?

I am happy to read an audition for any serious project. Please use the contact form initially outlining what you have in mind for your title and we can then arrange a short (5 minutes or less) sample of my reading of your manuscript.

Can you do accents?

My natural accent is well-spoken British, a little more colloquial than “queen’s english” although I can also read in that style. I can do most British regional variations such as scottish, northern and southern irish, welsh, northern british, cockney, estuary, etc. I can also do other world accents such as french, german, dutch, scandinavian, eastern european, russian, spanish, Indian, Australian, etc. My american accent is not perfect but certainly fine for character voices, regional variations are possible but mostly i can do a “general” american accent.

Can you add special effects?

I can add any number of special effects and/or sound effects to a production if it is appropriate to the telling of the story. What i find in general is that most audiobooks do not require any effects whatsoever and in fact these can often be off-putting for the listener. The art of audiobook narration is to tell the story in a way that brings the text to life in the mind of the reader. If it is necessary to rely on extra sounds or effects apart from my own voice, then i’m not doing my job properly! Bear in mind that a dramatized production of a story with full cast (such as a radio production) is an entirely different thing to a narrated audiobook.

Can you add music?

Music is my other great passion in life, so yes! I can add music of your choice to the finished production, or select royalty-free music. I can also offer original music for your project, although this would be additional to the narration and would have to be discussed on separate terms.

How long will it take to produce my audio book?

As a rule-of-thumb each finished hour of audio can take anywhere between 5 to 10 hours to produce, depending on the nature of the project. It is unlikely that your project will be the only one I’m working on at any given time, so it’s very hard to give a generalized answer to this question. When you contact me for a quote i will be able to give a realistic time-frame based on the length of the project and my current work-load. If you have a specific deadline in mind, i can work to that, but will not make unrealistic assurances i can’t deliver on.

Do you do voice-overs and commercials?

As a rule, no. In general commercial voice-over requires a specific skill and voice-type that i do not possess. That said, it is quite possible that my style of voice and narration may be suitable for an advert or voice-over, so please listen to my samples and consider joining my mailing list so you can keep up to date with any new samples or projects i produce. I might have just the thing you need!

Do you do video work?

I can provide narration or voice-over for video. However, I do not offer video-sync or lip-syncing to video.

Is there a minimum or maximum project length?

No. I’m happy to read anything from a short poem to a 3 volume epic.

Have a question not answered here?

Feel free to use the contact form for any specific enquiries.

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