How to become a studio recording engineer.

15 June, 2023

Sound engineering, like other areas of the music industry, can be competitive to get into. However, there are plenty of things you can do to give yourself an edge as a studio recording engineer.

As a studio recording engineer, you’ll be responsible for recording audio to the highest standards by positioning microphones and operating mixing desks, digital audio workstations (DAWs) and a range of audio processing equipment. You’ll work closely with a producer so you’ll be less involved in the creative and compositional aspects. You may assist in the editing and mixing of recordings to prepare them for commercial release.

It’s a highly skilled role that requires in-depth knowledge of a range of technical processes and techniques. You’ll also need strong people skills to keep recording sessions running smoothly.

Learn the skills

There’s a lot to learn if you’re wanting to become a studio recording engineer. Undertaking a degree in a subject like Sound Engineering or Music Production is a great way to ensure you have a comprehensive understanding of the principles, techniques and equipment required to succeed in this role.

Such courses also include career focussed modules, giving you a greater understanding of the industry and a range of entrepreneurial skills to prepare you for work as soon as you graduate.  

Whilst studying a degree at Spirit Studios, you’ll have access to recording studios where you can put everything you’ve learnt from lessons into practice. Record as much audio as you possibly can. Perhaps start by recording yourself, your classmates and friends to help you build confidence. Experiment with microphone selection and placement, and spend time mastering all the studios and equipment available to you.  This is your chance to make mistakes in a safe environment and learn from them.

You should soon move on to recording bands and artists that you’ll treat as clients, and you can start building a portfolio. Record as many people and instruments that you can find. The people you meet and work with now can become contacts that’ll you’ll continue to work with throughout your career.

Get experience

The importance of gaining experience can’t be talked about enough. It’s ultimately what separates you from another job applicant if, for example, you both have a degree.

Any experience you can get working in a recording studio is fantastic. Whether that’s on a placement, internship, or from reaching out to studios asking if there are opportunities available that you can assist with. 

You can also hire a commercial studio to record the contacts you have made so far. A freelance recording engineer who is regularly bringing in paying clients to a studio could be a contender for any upcoming in-house engineer opportunities.

Find your niche

Exploring the many aspects of studio recording will help you to determine where you want to be further along your career path. Once you’ve found the area you see yourself working in, you can hone in on the skills needed to compete for relevant roles. 

Build connections 

As always in competitive industries, building connections with people that you meet throughout your career is extremely beneficial. It can help you to find opportunities and new openings when they appear. Connections are also useful for advice when you’re starting out, whether it’s about something technical or job related.

Join us on your studio recording engineer career!

Now you know how to become a recording engineer, why not take a look at our Sound Engineering courses? They’re fantastic if you’re interested in learning how to record and deliver audio to the highest standards, and will help you gain the essential skills you need to thrive!

We also offer a Music Business and Event Management course if you prefer to get involved with the logistics of the music industry and event planning. As well as this, we provide Music Production courses for undergraduates and postgraduates, such as BA (Hons) Music Production and a MA Music Production.

You’ll get real opportunities, learn from industry experts, and develop your skills on your journey to a career in music and sound. Take a look at our range of subject areas, or see what student life at Spirit Studios is like by attending one of our open days.

If you’re ready to kickstart your music career, then apply now for the course that suits you. Contact us today if you want to find out more.

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