Now you can mix your love of science and music! How? You may ask. The answer; become an audio engineer. When you work in the field of acoustics there are many different avenues you can go down. Acoustics is concerned with the science of sound, whether that’s verbal noises, how sounds echo, environmental noises and how sounds travel. There are many different specialisations which I will discuss, to open up your eyes to the wide variety of careers available;
- Architectural acoustics; if a building is to be built as a theatre or a concert hall it is important that acoustical design plays a prominent part in the design. It’s about creating a space which will allow music to be heard in the best possible environment, so that sound can travel clearly reaching all members of the audience.
- Engineering acoustics; Using different equipment to produce the best possible transmission or reproduction of sound, whether that be by microphone, medical equipment, seismic surveying and communications.
- Musical Acoustics; this is concerned with pitch, timbre, melody, loudness etc basically anything to do with the way sound is transmitted and heard. It can involve musical composition.
- Noise control; Often the remit of the environmental agency. Its about discerning if noises are too loud or persistent or finding ways to dampen loud, aggravating noises.
- Physical acoustics; the study of sound waves which can go hand in hand with physics.
- Speech and hearing, undertaking assessments of peoples hearing and speech and providing technological aids to assist their communication
- Underwater acoustics; using sound waves to locate items underwater, to allow geological discoveries or as a military aid.
- Bioacoustics and medical acoustics; Using sound waves as part of medical assessment
Audio engineering is technical and creative. It allows you to use technical equipment to solve problems or find solutions. Audio engineers often work in the entertainment industry; their skills mean that sound can be reproduced, transmitted and recorded in the best possible way. As an audio engineer you may need to use your problem solving skills in finding the best way to get desired effects, whether that’s finding a novel sound effect or preventing hiss when music is played back.