Head of our Pro Sound Department, Kishore Banan writes down 6 benefits of learning Sound Engineering professionally.
1. Learn about sound systems and how to optimize their quality
Loudspeaker technology can go from very simple to highly sophisticated, while the fundamental principle of the speaker system transducers remains very similar to the early inventions, it is the integration of computer-aided tools and digital signal processing that make modern live sound systems quite complex. Many times the sound quality is compromised due to an incorrect or inaccurate setup of the live sound speaker system. At True School, you will learn these technologies from the ground up and you will also learn how to do hands-on practical work with loudspeaker systems.
2. Learn about wireless technology used by artists
Modern live entertainment events utilize wireless technology, singers often use wireless mics to sing that allows mobility on stage. This leads to more engaging performances, artists on stage also rely on wireless IEMs (In-Ear Monitors) to listen to the band during the show. IEMs provide many advantages over the traditional monitor wedge speakers, IEMS provide stereo mix, they block out the external noise and have better low frequency output compared to the wedges. A live sound engineer has to understand the basics of wireless technology and must be skilled in setup and running of wireless systems. At the True School of Music, students learn theoretical and practical aspects of wireless systems.
3. Learn about dealing with feedback
Feedback is when a microphone on stage starts to pick up the sound of the speaker system, most commonly the monitor speaker near the mic, because the audio signal being fed to the stage monitor includes this microphone’s pick up, a feedback loop is created which builds up into a loud squeal. This will annoy the artist and the audience. Feedback must be avoided in a live performance as it can make the artist uncomfortable and affect the performance. Feedback can be eliminated by understanding the application of loudspeaker dispersion and microphone polar patterns. A stage setup done with an understanding of these concepts can create a feedback-free show. At True School, students learn these concepts and practice ‘ringing out’ feedback.
4. Learn about emerging technologies like AOE
The live sound industry has moved on from using analogue systems, now a live sound system is mainly digital. Erstwhile analogue setups required cumbersome analogue wiring that was very bulky and time consuming to setup. Engineers would have to route heavy multicore snake cables all over the venue. This practice has become a thing of the past as the industry has adopted AOE (Audio over Ethernet) technology. All audio connections required for a live event can be accomplished using simple network cabling which is thin and easily manageable while supporting hundreds of channels of audio transmission. A live sound engineer must understand AOE protocols that have become standard in the industry.
5. Learn how to recreate studio sound for the stage
With the advent of digital live sound mixing consoles and the ability to load plugins into a live sound mix workflow, a live sound mix engineer can recreate the same balance and mix as the studio release of the artist. This was a daunting task some years back but has become possible today. The audience gets to experience the performance which comes close to what they experience while listening to the released tracks. The live sound mix engineer has to understand how plugin and DSP systems work in modern live sound systems.
6. Gain confidence with projects and guided practice
One of the most appealing aspects of learning live sound in a formal course is the ability to learn and practice in an industry-standard facility without the pressures of real world events. A safe and inviting environment is created to foster learning which is impossible in a real-world live event scenario. Students are guided in a step by step way to develop their understanding and skills in the field of live sound technology.