You love music. You spend all of your time listening to music, either on headphones, earbuds, in your car’s stereo or out at live shows. It’s more than a calling, music is a way of life. So how can you make a career out of your passion for audio? Become a sound engineer.
At its very core, a sound engineer (also known as an audio engineer), is a person who uses various equipment to capture sound. Once the sound has been captured, the engineer tweaks the sound with various techniques in a process known as mixing. Finally, the engineer finishes up the recording and makes sure it will sound good on any set of speakers.
Audio engineering is much more technical than just that, however. Once we start really looking at the entire set of career duties a sound engineer has to accomplish, we can see it’s more than just “pressing record”. What microphone is best for this instrument? How can I make my guitar sound like that one song? What outboard compressor gives me the best tone? These are the types of questions going on in the head of an audio engineer. Make no mistake, audio engineering is still a type of engineering, and it can be difficult!
There are a couple general routes that people take to become sound engineers.