Where to Find the Highest Audio Engineer Salary. How Education and Training can affect the Audio Engineer Salary

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1 Where to Find the Highest Audio Engineer Salary The audio engineer salary will vary and be mostly based on the level of experience of the engineer. Other factors will include level of education, number and length of internships, place of employment, the state the engineer resides in and the type of projects the engineer has worked on. Location will also play a big part in determining the average annual salary for the engineer. How Education and Training can affect the Audio Engineer Salary The duties of the engineer will be based on their place of employment and will often involve using machines and equipment to reproduce, record and transmit sound. The main duties can include recording and synchronizing sound with videos. Background noises, voices, instruments and sound effects are just some examples of the type of audio the engineer will work with. Typically, most employers will prefer to hire engineers that have completed a degree program, in addition to an internship. Training programs for this position are offered at the diploma, certificate and degree levels. Degree programs will provide students with a more in-depth look at this career field and the graduate will experience more employment opportunities and a higher audio engineer salary. The basic audio engineering class will instruct the student on the fundamentals of sound production and recording techniques. The topics will also include how to determine sound characteristics, acoustics, design objectives and how to setup equipment. The synthesis class will involve the combination of two musical styles. A student will study where electronic sound originates and the way the signals are processed. These classes will also compare FM and AM radio sound waves. A student will practice how to use digital audio while mixing sounds and signals. The audio mixing class will provide students with an in-depth look at the mixing process, which will involve adjusting tonal characteristics, and volume, for each sound source, for a live

2 performance or a recording. A student will also learn about compression, delays during mixing and equalization. The audio for video class will examine how sound effects, music and voice will impact a film. These lessons will provide the aspiring engineer with the skills that are needed in order to edit, mix and record a variety of audio for film usage. The program instructor will also cover such topics as time codes, picture synchronization and playback. The surround sound class will teach students the difference between regular sound and surround sound. The class work will include how to use recording techniques for surround sound and practice with both modern and classical music. A student will also work with film to create different types of sound. The class includes methods used in synthesis to mix surround sound tracks. The audio post production class will train a student on the right way to produce audio tracks, for film or video. Projects in this course will often require a student to use a number of audio elements, including ambient sounds, sound effects and dialogue. This class will usually require the student to complete a lab. Entry Level Salary for Engineers in this Field The entry level audio engineer salary will range from $24,000 to $28,000 annually. The top ten percent in this field will earn an audio engineer salary that ranges from $90,000 to $96,000. The lower ten percent of audio engineers will make an average salary of $20,000 a year. The median rate for the audio engineer salary is $46,000. The annual salary for this position will significantly increase for individuals who have a degree in this field and it can also qualify them for higher paying entry level jobs. Individuals who had for or more years of experience in the field experienced an annual income of $32,000 annually, while engineers with ten or more years of experience had an average salary of $56,000. Salary for Engineers Based on Work Environment

3 The audio engineer salary for individuals who work in the film industry was around $72,000 annually. Television and radio broadcasting engineers will earn an average of $50,000 a year while engineers working in the sound recording industry brought home an annual salary of $54,000. Performing art companies offer audio engineers an annual salary of $42,000. Some of the top paying states in the country include California, New York, Texas, Florida and Nevada. Nevada currently offers one of the highest salaries for this position at $76,000 annually. Individuals working in California experience a yearly income of $74,000, while audio engineers in New York made an annual salary of $66,000. States such as Tennessee, Alabama, Utah, and Alaska offered the lowest salary for this field. Metropolitan areas will provide a higher audio engineer salary, and more employment opportunities than rural areas. Currently, Glendale California offers one of the higher salaries for this position at $82,000, while in Las Vegas an audio engineer can earn an annual income of $80,000. Degree Programs at Sound Engineering Schools Sound engineering will involve recording, editing and composing sound for media formats. A sound engineer can be employed through music production companies and the TV or radio industry. Individuals who are interested in enrolling in programs offered at sound engineering schools will typically earn an associate s or bachelor s degree in music engineering, sound engineering or audio engineering. Popular Degree Programs at Sound Engineering Schools The two year associate s degree program, offered by most sound engineering schools, is typically the most common education path for students interested in gaining an entry level position as a sound engineer. Students in this program will learn how to use sound engineering to add effects and music to electronic media, radio and TV programs. On a techy level, a student will need to learn the basics of mixing technologies and audio recording. They will also learn the elements of acoustics, recording systems and music theory, sequencing and audio signal flow. Students will learn how to work and communicate within a group and manage workstations that are used for sound engineering.

4 Individuals who are interested in enrolling in programs offered at sound engineering schools are typically required to have a high school diploma. Program applicants will need to have a strong understanding of music, communication and technical math. The courses will combine the student s technical knowledge with practical hands on experience. Some of the core classes will include studio engineering, music fundamentals, digital sound design, studio recording, audio production, multi-track recording, audio production and music theory and music fundamentals. Career options exist in a number of fields, including the entertainment industry. Potential positions can include sound engineer, sound editor, studio technician, music production tech, composition tech, audio engineer and re-mastering specialist. Advanced Sound Engineering Degree Programs The bachelor s degree program can be completed in four years and is very similar to the associate s degree program. A student will be expected to learn the basic technologies involved with editing sound, and recording in a studio, while also developing their creative side in regards to producing music. A student will also be required to take general education classes, as part of the graduation requirements. A student will divide their time between learning practical techniques and music theory. Most degree programs will require that a student complete a senior project or an internship component. This program is usually offered at specialized technical schools or four year universities. The enrollment requirements for this program will vary from school to school. The bachelor s program will require a student to complete lectures in sound recording devices and music theory, in addition to practical studio sessions. The majority of students will spend a significant amount of time working on their independent audio projects. The typical courses included in this program will involve such topics as basic studio techniques, introduction to the music industry, acoustics and audio theory, sound design, electronic theory, live sound production, copyright laws and studio operations, A graduate will be eligible for such positions as live sound engineer, mastering engineer, dialogue editor, music track editor and studio manager. Read More Sound Engineer Salary and Job Outlook The sound engineer salary can be affected by a number of factors, including their level of education and training, their place of employment and the state they live in. The recording engineer can work in a number of environments, such as recording studios, theaters, radio stations, television stations and arenas or they can also work for the film industry.

5 Median Annual Sound Engineer Salary The median annual sound engineer salary ranges from $24,000 to $90,000, according to statistics provided by the BLS. The lower ten percent in this field earned less than $22,000, with top ten percent of sound engineers making more than $94,000. The salary for this position can be significantly affected by the engineer s years of experience in the field. Engineers with one to four years of experience can make an average of twelve to twenty-four dollars an hour. Individuals with five to ten years of experience can make fourteen to twenty-four dollars an hour, while engineers with twenty years of experience or more can make fifteen to thirty-two dollars an hour. Best Paying Industries for Sound Engineers Industries that employed the biggest amount of sound engineers featured salaries that ranged from $42,000 to $58,000, according to the BLS. The video and motion picture industries employed the largest number of engineers with an average salary of $60,000. Other industries that employed large numbers were subscription programming companies at $56,000 a year, performing arts companies at $44,000 a year, and television and radio broadcasting companies at $52,000 annually. The industries that provided the top sound engineer salary offered pay that ranged from $62,000 to $64,000. The industry that paid the top annual salary were software publishers, offering an annual salary of $66,000. Other places of employment that offered the best salary for this field include the video and motion picture industry, traveler accommodations, religious organizations and television stations. The video industry was listed as employing the largest amount of engineers and it s also considered one of the top paying industries. The states that paid the higher salary for this field include Washington, California, Georgia, Montana, New York, Florida and Connecticut. Washington features an average annual salary of $70,000, while California offered a salary of $68,000, and Montana featured an annual salary of $64,000, as did Georgia. Connecticut offers an annual salary of $56,000. States that offer the lower salary for sound engineers includes Utah, Virginia, Alabama and Alaska.

6 According to statistics, the growth rate for this position is at six percent, which is the average growth for most occupations. Individuals who have degrees in sound engineering will experience the most employment opportunities and the higher salary for this field. Because of the fierce competition of these positions, individuals who have completed internships during a training program will also be able to experience more employment opportunities. Typically, employers will prefer to hire individual that have associates or bachelor s degree in recording arts. Read More Recording Engineer Training A recording engineer will use sound recording equipment in order to produce, record, mix and synchronize voices, sound effects and music. An engineer can also work at a television broadcast studio, theater, or sports arena. Those individuals interested in degree programs for the recording engineer should weigh several factors, including the amount of money and time they want to invest in their education, in addition to internship opportunities and the job growth for this field. Recording Engineer Education and Training Options The aspiring recording engineer can find a program in such fields as recording arts or broadcasting technology, offered at diploma, associate s, bachelor s and master s degree levels. These programs are available at community colleges, music schools and universities. Schools that offer training for recording engineers will offer different program options, in fields such as broadcast technology, electronics and computer networking. With access to current digital technologies, a recording artist can bypass recording studios and utilize music creation software programs on their PCs. This is why it can be important for an engineer to have in-depth knowledge of trends in this type of technology. A student might also

7 want to look into the relationship a school has with local recording studios, in order to determine what type of internship opportunities are available. When selecting a school, the size of a class can also be a factor. Training as an engineer will typically require individual attention and personal feedback. A student who wants to have one on one time with their teacher or needs a smaller class size, should look for a program that features a low student to teacher ratio. An additional factor that can play a part in determining if a school has a program that s right for you is their internship program. Hands on experience in this field is essential when it comes to qualifying for employment after graduation. An internship can provide a student with field experience while they obtain academic credits. A student should look for a program that has proven relationships with local recording industry employers, such as movie, television and radio studios, sports arenas and community theaters. Degree and Certificate Programs for Engineers A recording engineer certificate program can be completed in less than a year. Enrollment requirements will vary from school to school but will typically include a high school diploma or the equivalent. The associate s degree program can be completed in two years and will provide the aspiring engineer with the foundational knowledge and skills that are necessary in order to be successful in this field. During this program a student will be able to participate in an internship program, usually during the last semester. The bachelor s degree program for engineers can be completed in four years and will also include an internship component. Students in this program will receive the required core training in recording and audio. The master s degree can be completed in three years and is designed to prepare the graduate for advanced positions in this field. Read More Find out How to Become a Music Producer How to become a music producer will involve completing an advanced degree program in addition to internships. The producer will work by combining vocals and instrumental elements in order to mix audio tracks. Often, how to become a music producer will involve obtaining a bachelor s degree with a concentration in music production and the completion of an internship or senior project.

8 How to Become a Music Producer: Job Description The producer will oversee the development of tracks. They will ensure that the visions of investors and musicians are fulfilled in terms of sound effects, vocals and instrumental arrangements. Technical skills will be required for this position in order to playback tracks, operate soundboards, edit, mix and record tracks. The management duties for the producer can involve booking recording sessions, hiring audio engineers and coordinating studio time. The music producer will also have the final say in regards to how a track is edited. Producers will also need to interact well with others in order to ensure that every party involved with the creation of an album or tracks shares the same artistic vision. They will also need to have the ability to articulate musical concepts in simple terms and be able to easily and tactfully resolve any type of creative difference. Education and Training Options for Music Producers There are no formal education requirements for how to become a music producer. Having a background in audio engineering can provide a producer with an advantage when it comes to managing engineers. Additionally, knowledge of music theory can be very useful when coordinating vocal and instrumental arrangements. There are a number of bachelor s degree programs that are dedicated to aspiring music producers. Areas of study for these programs can include digital mastering, recording, sound techniques, production and mixing. There are also master s degree programs available in similar field, for individuals who want to advance quickly in this field. The master s degree programs are three years in length and will also often feature an internship component. The length of the internship for both types of degree programs can vary from school to school, but it will usually take place during the final semester of a program. During a degree program, the student will participate in a number of internships, which will take place at recording studios, radio stations and TV stations. These internships will help the student to get their foot in the door for this very competitive industry while also providing them with the hands on experience that s needed in order to qualify for immediate employment after

9 graduation. Often, an internship at a recording studio can lead to employment after the intern has graduated. States that feature the best employment opportunities for this position include Chicago, Nashville, Los Angeles and New York. Read More The Best Music Creation Software Music creation software will help engineers, musicians and producers to edit, mix and record music, as well as re-master finished tracks. Also referred to as digital workstations, music creation software products perform well on both MACs and PCs. This article will take a look at some of the most popular and top selling music creation software programs on the market. Top Selling Music Creation Software Programs FL Studio, the producer edition includes a complete set of production features. This program also provides a step sequencer and event editor. Easy to navigate thanks to the user interface, this program is designed to work well for both the amateur and the professional. Logic is one of the best DAWs on the market. This music creation software program edits and records midi data and audio. The user is able to add high quality effects and master and mix the tracks in surround sound or stereo. They can also export the final mix as a number of audio file types. Unfortunately, Apple discontinued Logic versions for Windows, so if you re interested in this program, you ll need a MAC. Ableton live has always been a fan favorite and is described as an excellent DAW that features a powerful and beautiful interface. This music creation software program is easier to learn than some of the other top programs on the market, thanks in part to the number of free tutorials that are available. This program goes a long way towards preparing the user to be productive, as fast as possible. The introductory version of Ableton Live contains some limitations for individuals

10 who are somewhat new to audio engineering software. As an example, the intro version only contains twelve effects for each project. This can be considered as a significant limitation when compared to other high quality programs. Reason Essentials is an entry level version of the Reason DAW. The Essentials version is more than adequate when it comes to editing and recording tracks. This program features excellent instruments, effects and mixing tools that will meet the needs of beginners and pros alike. Popular DAWs that are Easy to Use and Affordable Track Studio EX can turn a PC into a multi-track music recording studio. It can play back and record an unlimited number of midi and audio tracks. This program is also available in different languages, including Spanish, Dutch, German, Italian, French and Portuguese. This program will work with almost any type of soundcard because it s compatible with audio drivers for ASIO. Sony ACID Music Studio is an affordable and easy to use option for DAW programs. It can record audio files and allows you to edit tracks using a number of effects. The user can also mix elements together in order to produce high quality sounding tracks. Read More

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