Sound Technician

This person has the responsibility of capturing clear audio throughout the shooting process. Sound technicians are required to assemble, operate and maintain the technical equipment used to record, amplify, enhance, mix or reproduce sound. They identify the sound requirements for a given task or situation and perform the appropriate actions to produce this sound. Sound technicians of different types are required in a range of industries including film, broadcasting (radio or television), live performance (theatre, music, dance), advertising and audio recordings.

The specific activities carried out by a sound technician vary according to the sector in which they are employed. Sound technician roles can be split into two categories:

  • Production: the recording of all sound on set or on location
  • Post-production: the balancing, mixing, editing and enhancing of pre-recorded audio.

For larger scale operations, such as film productions, sound technicians are usually required to work within sound teams. There are often separate sound teams for production and post-production. The job of a sound team is essentially to follow or interpret the instructions of the director, sound designer or sound supervisor. There are many specialised roles within sound teams including boom operators, sound assistants, dialogue editor, dubbing mixer, Foley artist, Foley editor,production mixer, sound designer and sound editor. Talent, passion and a good ear are theoretically the only pre-requisite to a successful career in sound.

Job/task description

  • Responsible for capturing all sound on set or on location
  • Assessing the acoustics of the performance area and assembling
  • Operating the necessary equipment
  • Selecting, positioning, adjusting and operating the equipment used for amplification and recording
  • Applying technical knowledge of sound recording equipment to achieve the determined artistic objectives
  • Recording sound onto digital audio tape or hard disk recorders
  • Ensuring the high quality of sound
  • Monitoring audio signals to detect sound-quality deviations or malfunctions
  • Anticipating and correcting any problems
  • Consulting with producers and performers to determine the sound requirements
  • Maintaining and repairing sound equipment
  • Mixing sounds to create scenic effect
  • Integrating (synchronization) of pre-recorded audio (dialogue, sound effects and music) with visual content
  • Re-recording and synchronizing audio (post-synching)
  • Mixing and balancing speech, effects and music
  • Creating and altering sound effects for use in films, television, etc.
  • Ability to work with a wide range of individuals with different viewpoints and skills
  • May be expected to convey technical concepts to non-technical individuals
  • Prevent or resolve problems