• Things I've been learning while at school

    So I currently attend an audio engineering school in Tempe AZ (I wont mention the name but yes its that school)
    And I have learned A few big tips that have opened my eyes to Audio Engineering and Producing in general thought I'd share ten eye opening experiences (not in any specific order). Also if you dont agree tell why or if its redundant just ignore it was intended for ppl just starting out

    10. You dont have a studio. Lol this is like day one at school. Technically a studio is the room where the band performs. The control room is where the engineer is at with the console and the iso booth is well just that an iso booth. Also studios are treated and have floating floors to help with rumble. Instead of wasting your money recording in an inferior room and letting you talent go to waste buy studio time in a pro studio. If you want afford that than save. There's not Walmart of audio. Also you should pay to mix your beats to maintain the highest quality of sound if you not good at it.

    9. You can make a shit load of money in live sound!!! I dont know why I never see ppl chatting about live sound but I think its where the money is!!! A year ago a former grad was interning with taylor swifts crew and he is now her in ear monitoring engineer. He makes 5k a month! Also since most ppl cry about the mixtape game and how artist go tour off mixtapes isnt it a good idea to learn live sound since concerts are still a great source of income for artist. I believe Rihanna made 90 Million last year of her tour.

    8. Learn to solder!!! Its a must in live sound. And also if you want to intern at studio. Patchbays are a pain in the A** and most have to be soldered. Also if you can solder you can make cables that are just a good as monster cables but 3 times cheaper!

    7. Stop buying crappy gear. Seriously this goes without saying. Ive answered a lot of questions about ppl asking is this okay or that...you know its not. When ppl say "I'm hear noise when I record" the common answer is check your cables but if all is well your just witnessing low inferior gear. (Its actually a good thing you realized it) now you know stop buying crap. Buy the best have it for life.

    6. Learn how to read transient response graphs and frequency response charts. I have found so many mics that have very similar frequency responses to u87's. A MXL v69 ME is a great mic for 299 and it has a similar response as a u87 the high end is a little sharp but if you tilt the mic 45 degrees of axis the highs roll off. (Illmind used this mic to record Skyzoo's mixtape) and it sounds great. Also you get to learn how do things compare in sound. Beats by Dre headphones are good but so are Sennheiser hd280 and cost one third of Dre's but sound just as good maybe even better

    5. Stop calling yourself a producer. I know this one seems a little disrespectful but the game of this forum is "future producer" not current producer. Ppl be like "I've been producing for ten yrs and want to finally step y game up what a good mic under 100 dollars?" WTF if you are a real producer you would know that. I've been guilty of it too but I have since stopped bc its disrespectful to Quincy Jones

    4. Read the Manual before buying the gear!!!! Please read it. Stop asking how to do something before reading the manual. Also I will let you know how it works and if it is suitable for you. I have been looking for a console for two months and I have read several manuals to see how they work. Most fall short bc of my price point and my needs. But at least I didn't buy the console that find out its not ideal. So read the manual before you buy!!!

    3. Watch Pensaco's place - Pensado's Place - ITL #31 - Hardware Compressors and EQs - YouTube its so informational and you get to see a great engineer work and it will show you little tricks and tips to improve your overall sound. Learn how to get your mix like "Johnny Juliano or Vybe Beatz" LMAO

    2. A.This is a two parter. There is a thing called "producer mode" lol. This is funny to me but its true. Inline consoles have a big and small fader and most usually have a flip or rev button that will switch which fader that is going to the mtr (tape or daw) it is useful because if your working with Madona and her daughter is in the control with you and she says I want to hear mommy's vocals louder and the most logical thing for her to do is reach for the large fader. Every one knows the large fader turns up the volume (it doesnt do that lol) but if you slap her hand away you get fired. So put it in producer mode and let her have at it. She doesnt mess up the tape and you dont get fired for slapping Madona's kid.

    B. Most "producers" in hip hop are not producers. They be in producer mode two and dont even know it...lol but my reason for this one is bc as I have become more aware of the music industry I have been let down by most ppl. Producers know everything about everything. I dont know how many times I watched interviews of producer's and they get asked a technical question and they cant answer it. But Dr. Dre gets slammed for not making every beat. But ask him why he tracks in his vocal chain. Diddy is another prime example of a producer who doesnt make beats. But he's more of the "I want her vocals to sound like shes wearing pink lipstick kinda producers lol if you get my drift) I love Diddy! LOL They're is two of the few real producers in Hip Hop. You gotta give thim all praise. I dont dis any one who makes beats bc I do too and you can still make a gang of money but just know the difference between the two.

    1.School is the best way to make it happen if you want to work in a studio!!! I know most will debate this but if you want to work in an elite studio you need to go to school. Oasis studio in LA only takes students from my school. Eddie Krammer assistant Engineer is also a former grad. We have some instructors that have worked with Stevie wonder, Michael Jackson , price, Paris Hilton (BIG MONEY) and so many more. The thing about school is that the intern dept and instructors have made the relationships and networking already. They go to bat for the their students and have travel to NYC to convince studio managers to give their students a job. 54 nominations at this yrs grammys. And 28 winners is a damn good look. Some have even worked on the watch the throne album. Also you get to see what standard gear is so you dont buy crap. You get to use it too. I'm pissed I cant afford a good pair of monitors but at least I know what they sound like so when I am able too I'm not wasting my money. Also you learn from pros that have tracked vocals with Stevie wonder (and had a session crash on him lol) those stories give you invaluable info that you cant find on forums. Learning Pro tools is cool but you need to really know it. like how to get passed a password protected file in pro tools with out the password. or how to get back a corrupted file when Stevie wonder is cussing you out (talk about pressure) Also you get to learn analog first!!! we get logic when we start but we dont dive into recording into a daw until 15 weeks in. The first 15 weeks are recording to analog tape.

    I just wanted to share some eye opening experiences I have had while on my journey...to the ones who are working in the industry share a few!!!

    Also I'm thinking of doing a weekly video of tips I learning while in school. Would any of you be interested and what topics in general would interest you. Keep in mind my school is super crazy about recording sessions or class time with a video camera. Thats the reason why you never see any sessions on youtube (and why I never mentioned the name lol). Its prohibited! but I may try to turn my laptop camera on during my next session. I'm recording to analog tape than gonna transfer to pro tools later. Full band!!!
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Things I've been learning while at school started by epotts06 View original post
    Comments 108 Comments
    1. Crazer's Avatar
      Crazer -
      Really Enjoyed Reading This
    1. mr.music2's Avatar
      mr.music2 -
      GREAT post!!!I hope people actually take time and read this and do they own research!!This music game is getting RIDICULOUS!!
    1. BOONIEBOYBEATS's Avatar
      BOONIEBOYBEATS -
      nice ass post
    1. seqnsultan's Avatar
      seqnsultan -
      good info and great post. Thks a bunch.
    1. RazhuProductions's Avatar
      RazhuProductions -
      Good advice dude, thanks
    1. Kube's Avatar
      Kube -
      Cool post. I've done a 6 month Electronic Music Production course at SAE and will be starting my diploma in Audio Engineering in January, can't wait! there's so much awesome stuff to learn.
    1. LilRickMusic's Avatar
      LilRickMusic -
      Appreciate the Tips!
    1. SoTerrible's Avatar
      SoTerrible -
      That's what's up bro, I'm currently going to American River College for audio engineering and feel the same way as you I thought I was a producer haha.. Anyone in the Nor Cal area looking for a great school for music I highly suggest ARC our entire music depart was upgraded a few years ago with 10 million in equipment and new construction. Check out our facilities on doctorvmusic.com. We start out on tape too but not reel to reel just a good ol hd24 mtr but working on a SSL AWS 900 in level 2 Studio Recording Tech! At first I wasn't liking the while analog thing cuz everything I've done has been in the box and digital. But now that I know what everything odd and does I an doing stufg with Reason/Record I never knew I could do!School is the best thing I've ever done for my music career and is a must if you want to have a job in the industry. J.Terrible
    1. dvsjay's Avatar
      dvsjay -
      I see that everyone find this great. I mean it's informative and helpful in every aspect however, some of the stuff in there belittles people's belief and desires.

      First off, it's great to always get down and technical about what stuff really means like calling yourself a producer, or your work space a studio etc. It's even awesome advice that you're pleading with the general forum to educate themselves formally or otherwise. I am all for it and yes the essence of the message is great so I am definitely not spamming / trolling.

      It has been debated that recent use of the term "producer" and "studio" has been distorted. Which is why you can do a search for "home studio" and you will most likely see mixing gear and stuff and not necessarily what you described. And am sure that most of the persons who call themselves "producers" don't have an audio engineering certificate. I'm not saying don't educate yourself, I'm just merely saying don't feel discouraged or pushed aside by those fortunate enough to undergo formal training. Not everyone can afford to go to college (especially those from "3rd world" countries whose currency against tho US dollar is weak, stacked wit the extra high cost of being an international student). Then of course there is your target market. May be really easy to jump into a job in the bigger continents, but way to often persons come back to their homes and the market is not available so even starting their own business would not pool any activity. So now they're unemployed with a HUGE student loan to pay. That's reality.
      (And hiding the school name. Is it really because the school wants to remain a secret or you don't want others to find an affordable institute? Am not sure, so am asking because any school would love interest from persons and even persuade them to join if they're qualified.)

      Also, a back up plan (question someone asked earlier) is always a great idea, regardless if you use it or not. If it were as simple as saying "I want it so I will get it", then everyone would be seated exactly where they want to be. Some people make it, some people don't.

      So if Jack calls himself a producer and his work is just as good as commercial releases but he never even finished high school, why should someone tell Jack that he isn't a producer. This may only break his spirit and where as Jack could have landed a DECENT enough job based on experience and his portfolio, he now just sits and says he's untrained. Which is why if someone finishes schooling at an institution without internship, they remain unemployed longer because ALL companies look for experience in the field. Internship allows one to prove their worth since they're already in.

      Anyways, I think I've ranted a bit longer than I expected. But all in all, very informative post, but keep it real. Keep up to date with the terms producer and studio, and realize that not everyone can simply "just make it" or "just save up". Single parents, low paying jobs, family responsibilities, geographic locations all play a part in ones decision on how they approach their career if they do have a chance at it.
    1. Team Machine's Avatar
      Team Machine -
      good post, would love some tips videos
    1. Dream League's Avatar
      Dream League -
      Thanks for the info bro!, Scotty P.
    1. atombombceo's Avatar
      atombombceo -
      great post, I as a super producer agree with your tips.

      alot of people call themselves producers and aren't but atleast they have goals right. .
    1. Matjias Gammelvind's Avatar
      Nice post, really enjoyed it.
    1. eMGeeLBC's Avatar
      eMGeeLBC -
      Quote Originally Posted by Rubix Shogunna View Post
      RZA never went to no damn audio school, if you got it, you got it. Simple as that.
      I gotta say I agree with that to an extent, I know a couple of people who went to audio schools and their beats suck! But never know might be some good networking possibilities and learn things you never thought to study
    1. antheezie's Avatar
      antheezie -
      Quote Originally Posted by eMGeeLBC View Post
      I gotta say I agree with that to an extent, I know a couple of people who went to audio schools and their beats suck! But never know might be some good networking possibilities and learn things you never thought to study
      There is so much more to being a producer than making beats. Thats what the OP was saying.
    1. rapt0r's Avatar
      rapt0r -
      Registered 20 minutes ago. First thing I've opened here. Never will regret this spontanious decision. Really glad about it, actually. Great post. I'm aiming for engeneers too, but i live in a country that hasn't got that sort of school. I guess I'll have to go abroad.
    1. volcanobeats's Avatar
      volcanobeats -
      great post man, actually going to engineering school starting next year so thanks for the tips
    1. skerrick's Avatar
      skerrick -
      did you actually just recommend DR dre beats?! im sorry man theres some useful info in here but using headphnoes with boner sized bass drivers for production is the definition of counter intuitive.
      apart from that theres some interesting stuff here. although, im on $3200 a month as a telemarketer, so putting up with taylor swifts music every day for only $5000 a month sounds like a nightmare to me, although it is pretty cool that hes helping an international artist with such a big name, its definitely the kind of job that beefs up a well written resume.
      thanks for the article, great post.
    1. cinimage21's Avatar
      cinimage21 -
      Amazing Post I appreciate you for creating Valuable Post. Thank You
    1. SVsoul's Avatar
      SVsoul -
      Good post and informative... More or less it's all true, but I can tell it was written by a person that views the trade in a cynical manner... There are many facets to this industry that can be mastered and catered to the distinct sounds. I believe it is in the mind's eye of the person recording. Essentialy, and without prejudice as you wrote, I could record an A+ industry quality fully produced mastered and rendered project for pennies in comparison to the elitist market that is the sound gear world. It's a given that u can't use the cables that came with your first Affinity Squire for recording or you might get undesirable noise... I understand stating the obvious for truly green starters, however recorded music at some point is converted or created in digital form.. The study of sound waves and how to manipulate these waves are the essence of the recording, coupled with mankind's desire to create and express... So I say nay folks! I don't care if you start out with FL Studio and record with a USB mic into your phone... You are still "producing" what you intended to produce. If you follow the teachings of this person you will slave in another person's "sweatshop studio" and never realizing the freedom and education that comes from learning.. Start with music theory and composure.. Learn how to fully understand why notes and melodies that turn into ensembles can change everything prior to plugging in your first DAW, VST, VSTi, et al... I was educated in music and hold a masters. I can tell the true value of education at his institution by merely stumbling over his punctuation, misuse of contractions, improper subject-verb agreements, and nomenclature... Read a book. Stop discouraging those poor souls that are beginning. You just want to limit the number of fish in the job pool.