Audio production technician

An audio production technician


Audio production technicians set up, prepare, check and maintain equipment in order to provide optimal sound quality for a live performance. They cooperate with road crew to unload, set up and operate sound equipment and instruments.

Excludes people performing media or broadcast activities.
Includes people working in event and rental companies.

The duties of an audio production technician include, but are not limited to:

  • Meeting with clients to determine the requirements and specifications of recordings or performances.
  • Safely setting up, repairing, servicing, and replacing equipment when required.
  • Manipulating and enhancing live and recorded audio.
  • Diagnosing and troubleshooting equipment.
  • Understanding briefs and making helpful suggestions if possible and appropriate.
  • Editing and mixing audio to client specifications.
  • Improvising props to produce required sounds.
  • Keeping abreast of advancements in the field through ongoing training and networking with others in the industry.
  • Building solid, professional relationships with other artists and clients.

Other titles

The following job titles also refer to audio production technician:

front of house sound engineer
live sound technician
sound engineer
Front of house technician
stage manager
event technician
audio engineer
venue technician
PA man
live sound engineer
stage sound technician
acoustics technician
PA woman

Minimum qualifications

Most new entrants to the industry have a degree in a relevant music technology subject, such as sound recording or audio engineering. The level of knowledge expected is high as the equipment used is increasingly complex.

ISCO skill level

ISCO skill level is defined as a function of the complexity and range of tasks and duties to be performed in an occupation. It is measured on a scale from 1 to 4, with 1 the lowest level and 4 the highest, by considering:

  • the nature of the work performed in an occupation in relation to the characteristic tasks and duties
  • the level of formal education required for competent performance of the tasks and duties involved and
  • the amount of informal on-the-job training and/or previous experience in a related occupation required for competent performance of these tasks and duties.

Audio production technician is a Skill level 3 occupation.

Audio production technician career path

Similar occupations

These occupations, although different, require a lot of knowledge and skills similar to audio production technician.

video technician
followspot operator
intelligent lighting engineer
scenery technician

Long term prospects

These occupations require some skills and knowledge of audio production technician. They also require other skills and knowledge, but at a higher ISCO skill level, meaning these occupations are accessible from a position of audio production technician with a significant experience and/or extensive training.

mask maker
disc jockey
video designer
puppet designer
music producer

Essential knowledge and skills

Essential knowledge

This knowledge should be acquired through learning to fulfill the role of audio production technician.

  • Acoustics: The study of sound, its reflection, amplification and absorption in a space.
  • Musical instruments: The different musical instruments, their ranges, timbre, and possible combinations.

Essential skills and competences

These skills are necessary for the role of audio production technician.

  • Work ergonomically: Apply ergonomy principles in the organisation of the workplace while manually handling equipment and materials.
  • Understand artistic concepts: Interpret an artist’s explanation or demonstration of their artistic concepts, inceptions and processes and strive to share their vision.
  • Assess power needs: Prepare and manage the provision of electrical power for different areas.
  • Perform technical sound check: Prepare and run a technical sound check before rehearsals or live shows. Check instrument setup and ensure correct functioning of the audio equipment. Anticipate possible technical problems during a live show.
  • Fit up sound on stage: Set up, rig, connect, test and tune audio equipment on stage.
  • Use personal protection equipment: Make use of protection equipment according to training, instruction and manuals. Inspect the equipment and use it consistently.
  • Pack electronic equipment: Safely pack sensitive electronic equipment for storage and transport.
  • Adapt to artists’ creative demands: Work with artists, striving to understand the creative vision and adapting to it. Make full use of your talents and skills to reach the best possible result.
  • Perform soundchecks: Test the sound equipment of a venue to ensure smooth operation during the performance. Cooperate with performers to make sure the venue equipment is adjusted for the requirements of the performance.
  • De-rig electronic equipment: Remove and store various types of electronic equipment safely after use.
  • Prepare personal work environment: Correct settings or positions for your working instruments and adjust them before starting operations.
  • Technically design a sound system: Set up, test and operate a complex audio system, based on a given sound concept. This could be a permanent as well as a temporary installation.
  • Operate an audio mixing console: Operate an audio mixing system during rehearsals or during live performances.
  • Manage personal professional development: Take responsibility for lifelong learning and continuous professional development. Engage in learning to support and update professional competence. Identify priority areas for professional development based on reflection about own practice and through contact with peers and stakeholders.
  • Work safely with mobile electrical systems under supervision: Take the necessary precautions while providing temporary power distribution for performance and art facility purposes under supervision.
  • Work with respect for own safety: Apply the safety rules according to training and instruction and based on a solid understanding of the prevention measures and risks to your own personal health and safety.
  • Maintain sound equipment: Set up, check, maintain and repair sound equipment for a live performance establishment.
  • Set up sound reinforcement system: Set up an analogue sound reinforcement system in a live situation.
  • Keep up with trends: Monitor and follow new trends and developments in specific sectors.
  • Set up equipment in a timely manner: Make sure to set up equipment according to deadlines and time schedules.
  • Provide power distribution: Provide power distribution for light, stage, sound, video and recording purposes.
  • Follow safety procedures when working at heights: Take necessary precautions and follow a set of measures that assess, prevent and tackle risks when working at a high distance from the ground. Prevent endangering people working under these structures and avoid falls from ladders, mobile scaffolding, fixed working bridges, single person lifts etc. since they may cause fatalities or major injuries.
  • Tune up wireless audio systems: Tune up a wireless audio system in a live situation.

Optional skills and competences

These skills and competences are sometimes, but not always, required for the role of audio production technician. However, mastering these skills and competences allows you to have more opportunities for career development.

ISCO group and title

3521 – Broadcasting and audiovisual technicians

  1. Audio production technician – ESCO
  2. Sound engineer job profile |
  3. Sound Engineer Job Description – Betterteam
  4. Featured image: Image by Stephen Sidney W from Pixabay
Last updated on February 24, 2023

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