This post provides detailed information on the sound technician job description, including key duries, tasks, and responsibilities they commonly perform.
It also highlights the major requirements you may be expected to fulfill to be hired for the sound technician role by most recruiters/employers.
What Does a Sound Technician Do?
A sound technician, who is also referred to as an audio engineer or AV technician, operates audio equipment to record, enhance, manipulate, reproduce and amplify sound for live events and productions.
They typically report to a lead engineer, supervisor or creative director and work on location at venues, studios, churches, conferences and more.
While some roles require only a high school diploma, many prefer or require candidates with postsecondary education like an audio production certificate or related engineering Bachelor’s degree.
Certifications from industry organizations can also be an asset.
The core functions of a sound technician job description include setting up gear, programming mixers, recording/editing audio, troubleshooting issues, and ensuring balanced sound.
They also test equipment, advise on technical needs and stay updated on the latest technologies.
These roles are critical across creative industries globally for delivering flawless audio. Employers look for sound technicians with technical aptitude, collaborative ability and attention to detail.
In the US, no license is needed but technicians should adhere to safety, building codes and regulations set by contracting venues/studios.
Overall, sound techs creatively apply complex audio knowledge to faithfully amplify performances, preserve recordings and craft impactful listening experiences.
Sound Technician Job Description Example/Sample/Template
The sound technician job description consists of the following duties, tasks, and responsibilities:
- Set up sound equipment like microphones, speakers, amps, mixers for events and recording sessions
- Connect audio gear with appropriate cables, connectors and routing for signal flow
- Calibrate equipment levels, apply tuning, set gain staging for optimal performance
- Discuss sound, lighting and stage plans with production team members
- Program and operate mixing boards to balance, EQ and process sound
- Manage and mix live sound for performer monitors and audience speakers
- Record, edit, enhance and master audio during recording sessions
- Troubleshoot issues quickly as problems arise to avoid disruptions
- Collaborate with directors on sound aesthetics for theatre, film and broadcast
- Ensure safety procedures followed when rigging speakers, mics and stands
- Check power requirements for equipment and install surge protectors
- Brief talent on microphone technique for best audio quality
- Play sound cues and effects for games, plays and broadcast programs
- Maintain inventory of gear and supplies like cables, batteries and more
- Test equipment operation regularly for functionality
- Research and stay current on the latest audio technologies
- Advise on room acoustics and isolation for control rooms, studios, etc.
- Evaluate sound system component options for purchases and upgrades
- Coach assistants and trainees on standard audio practices
- Prepare detailed equipment schedules, input lists and stage plots
- Use rigging gear to mount speakers safely and orient directionally
- Manipulate sound characteristics like panning, fading, compression
- Create audio back-ups on external drives after recording sessions
- Clean and perform routine maintenance on gear as needed
- Document settings, asset inventories, and technical riders.
Sound Technician Job Description for Resume
If you have worked before or are presently working as a sound technician and are making a new resume or CV, then you can create a compelling Professional Experience section for the resume by applying the sample sound technician job description provided above.
You can highlight the major duties and responsibilities you have performed or are currently carrying out as a sound technician in your resume’s Professional Experience by utilizing the ones in the sound technician job description example above.
This will show that you have been successful performing the sound technician duties and responsibilities, which can significantly boost your chances of being hired for the new job , especially if it requires the sound technician work experience.
Sound Technician Requirements: Skills, Knowledge, and Abilities for Career Success
Here is a list of vital skills, knowledge, and abilities usually required for success as a sound technician:
- Expertise operating mixing boards, audio gear, recording technology
- Understanding of sound wave fundamentals and acoustic principles
- Ability to creatively apply audio effects like compression, EQ, reverb
- Proficiency with Pro Tools, Ableton, programming software
- Skill rigging and mounting speakers, cable routing safely
- Troubleshooting abilities to quickly solve sound issues
- Equipment like microphones, mixers, speakers, recording devices
- Connectivity protocols like XLR, USB, MIDI, Bluetooth, Thunderbolt
- Signal flow and sound system design for live concerts and studios
- Mixing theory and positioning for optimal sound balance
- Music production equipment, software and workflows
- Industry laws, regulations, building codes and safety guidelines
- Collaborative teamwork and communication skills
- Organizational skills for complex production logistics
- Attention to detail ensuring flawless audio quality
- Ability to work long, irregular hours for production schedules
- Creative problem-solving and quick reflexes under pressure.
Sound Technician Salary
When you look at what sound technicians make in the U.S., the average yearly salary in 2022 was $57,710 according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
But that average salary jumps way up if you live in certain states. California pays their sound technicians the most – around $72,210 a year.
And sound techs in Washington D.C. are banking $68,790. New York pays $66,980 and Massachusetts shells out $64,680.
Connecticut rounds out the top five at $64,500.
So if you’re a sound tech looking to cash in, head out West or to the Northeast. Of course exact salaries depend on things like years of experience and specific job titles.
But those states definitely pay more for sound tech work compared to most of the country. Something to think about if you want to get the big bucks!
If you love both music and technology, going into engineering could be a really rewarding career move.
It lets you blend your passion for tunes with your tech skills
This article has delved into the sound technician job description, including the duties and responsibilities, essential skills required, and educational backgrounds necessary for success in the field, along with the salary potential and more.
From the science of sound waves to bringing artists’ visions to life through mixes and recordings, sound techs fill a unique niche in entertainment and media productions.
With the ability to pivot between live venues and recording studios, these roles offer variety and the chance to develop well-rounded audio abilities.
For those looking to progress, continual learning and keeping current on the latest hardware and software is key in such a dynamic, technology-driven field.
Certifications and higher education can also open doors to more advanced engineering and leadership positions.
Overall, sound techs with an artistic ear, analytical mind, manual dexterity, and knack for problem-solving can find rewarding lifelong careers.
Their specialized expertise ensures everything from theater dialog to surround sound cinematic effects gets transmitted flawlessly.
For employers and clients alike in music, film, broadcast, and beyond, an exceptional audio engineer delivers professional polish.