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best audio engineering school in austraila?
Old 31st January 2013
  #31
Lives for gear
 
Daniel Antix's Avatar
I'm with you, I'm an ex- AIM student (graduated in 2003) and I don't recommend it. They f**ked me around with my degree and I spent all this money and didn't see the benefit (all went into their new campus). Plus they have teachers who went straight out of the uni into teaching... where's the real world experience!?!?!

Don't get me wrong there are some good teachers there, but if I relied on just uni to learn my trade I wouldn't be still working in the industry today.

Quote:
Originally Posted by TheLastByte View Post
I can remember around 6-7 years ago a young Kid around 18 wanted to go and do the AIM course, ( I spoke with his parents telling them it was a no go zone etc) anyway the kid went to the orientation with his Dad, and got sold on all the **** fast talk from the AIM Mentor/Teachers etc.....

After 2 Years of an Audio engineering degree, (And around $14K AUD) the kid had knocked up an only allowable total of 10 hours on the Old RHINO bottom floor SSL G+ and that was including the tuition, His TOTAL TIME on the CONSOLE was around 90 Minutes, the had 1 Comp/Lim/PT Rig TDM with Adat Behringer analog outputs, basically the poor guy was so seriously crushed, he bailed in the 1st quarter of the 3rd year! By then (Doing Sound Engineering as a Main Course) all up that was around 25$K in fees (Living expenses not included)

As has, and will always be the problem is often many things just can not be taught in this profession, more so every studio differs and has it's own idiosyncratic way of working and style - Generic Courses offer exactly what you could learn from around $600 Bucks in Books and 18 months in a Library.

I think these days if you really have to go to an Audio School, Tafe or JMC would be the best options. These schools where you pay your Term Fee's in 1st Year non refundable instalments have caught many out! Some schools bank on a certain percentage of Students dropping out - and they damn well know this!

This is also why your 1st year is not a set in stone solid course or structured in the disciplines required. They want you to do 4 years in total & waste the 1st year doing Multimedia to set you up for your deciding 3 years, So you get

Music Lessons 101 with Names like Tommy Emmanuelle:
Live Sound 101
Studio Basics 101
Midi 101
Video 101
Business Management 101
etc
etc
etc

This was happening at AIM in the 90's and 2000's I hope it's now under new management!

I can still remember the Sydney Studio Scene in the early 1990's trying to stop a whole gamut of Audio Schools opening up & getting federal funding for fees with petitions from near every Studio in Sydney large and small trying to convince the Federal government it was such a Bloody Jib and that No Studio worth it's salt would take on a 3 year Graduate..... as learning was all important in-house, if I remember correctly Martin Benge from 301 was a huge advocate against these massive Audio Engineer Schools and led the charge for the best part!

All this did was let the Governments close places at AFTERS and Nth Sydney Tafe College which had a brilliant Audio Course that the government felt cost far too much!

Just my 2cents
Old 8th February 2013
  #32
Gear Head
TheLastByte
"you were actually Paid in 1984 $200.00 a week to go to AFTERS"

Actually it was less than $150.00 a week but that was still very generous at the time!

1984 was the year it became a BA accredited course. Again, generous!

Also it's AFTRS (Australian Film Television and Radio School) and in 1984 it was just AFTS.

Just being pedantic.
Old 9th February 2013
  #33
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by lae777 View Post
TheLastByte
"you were actually Paid in 1984 $200.00 a week to go to AFTERS"
Actually it was less than $150.00 a week but that was still very generous at the time! 1984 was the year it became a BA accredited course. Again, generous!
Also it's AFTRS (Australian Film Television and Radio School) and in 1984 it was just AFTS. Just being pedantic.

Actually it was just a long Corrugated Roofed Structure with a TV Studio at the end! Lol...! Though...$150/200.00 was pretty good back then, I wonder what it would equate to know in $$$$$$. edit: [Canteen was damn Fine (with good Roof)....That was Brilliant Tucker!]

Guys Imagine getting paid $1500.00 a fortnight to go to SAE Byron!
Lol......!
Ha!
Old 9th February 2013
  #34
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Daniel Antix View Post
I'm with you, I'm an ex- AIM student (graduated in 2003) and I don't recommend it. They f**ked me around with my degree and I spent all this money and didn't see the benefit (all went into their new campus). Plus they have teachers who went straight out of the uni into teaching... where's the real world experience!?!?! Don't get me wrong there are some good teachers there, but if I relied on just uni to learn my trade I wouldn't be still working in the industry today.
Indeed true....though you Can not Equate UNI with AIM surely not.....No....!
Out of curiosity, just how many hours did you rack up on the SSLG+ More then 10 (Solo) and around 30 (Group?)......Awaiting Sir!
Cheers
J.
Old 10th February 2013
  #35
Gear Nut
 

The way to learn is to get into a real studio.

The way to get into a real studio is to bring something to the table. The best suggestion is work. If you have sales skills and know enough contacts, I can't imagine any studio owner turning you away if you are bringing clients in.

Alternatively there might be some skill that the studio needs and otherwise would have to pay for eg. I recently took on an electronics whizz who can service our beautiful but aging Auditronics console.

The schools can sometimes give the impression that there are studios out there willing to pay a wage while you wait for work to come in. It just doesn't happen.
Old 10th February 2013
  #36
Moderator
 
narcoman's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by loscolorados View Post
but i have no teacher?
you cant "|teach" this gig. You "do" it - although it helps to surround yourself with experienced types. You dont normally find such types in SAE etc..... as noted in an earlier post SAE (like much private education) is about making money (as any business is). There only source of income is you, the student.

LEt me put it another way - I'm an employer and I don't really count an SAE degree as a degree at all.
Old 10th February 2013
  #37
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by narcoman View Post
Let me put it another way - I'm an employer and I don't really count an SAE degree as a degree at all.
EXACTLY - Getting a Gig in a Studio as an Assistant/Tape Op in 2013 is literally Hand to Hand Combat with Full Nintendo, PSP-3, Wi II Check points - and you need to be trained in so many skills - (BattleAxe Combat skills involved)! You also need to be ready for those Ninja's behind you - nope,
the other ones!
Yeap....Those one's!
Best of Luck!
Old 10th February 2013
  #38
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gentleman View Post
AFTRS is $17K per year and admission is not automatic but by experience/talent. If your really serious about being an Engineer spend the 2yrs tuition money and spend your $34K on a decent rig with nice monitors etc, nice mics and preamps, which all hold their resale value btw if you get bored or don't have the drive and talent to make it. Having actually worked for SAE and 301 for a number of years, I can tell you now I know what I'm talking about!! Get your gear, learn your chops, then see if you need to pay money for study. Probably 98 per cent of ppl who shelled out the big bucks are not earning any money in the industry!! What does that tell you?
.

Indeed.

And newsflash, Chrisso talks about the Aussie scene being vastly less busy than the LA and London scenes...

Well, guess what - it's almost impossible to get work in the LA, London, New York and Nashville scenes (!)

And anyone who tells you otherwise is either in the top .0001%, or selling something, or smoking crack.

The grass is always greener on the other side (except that it usually isn't).

I say save your money, and I agree 100% that if you DO spend money -
spend it on something that will HOLD IT'S VALUE - like quality studio hardware that you can re-sell when you're broke.

If you want to create music so badly, then you have to create music.

If you want to spend money so badly, and don't care about making money - then no one can save you from yourself.

As always, YMMV.


.
Old 10th February 2013
  #39
Quote:
Originally Posted by narcoman View Post
you cant "|teach" this gig. You "do" it - although it helps to surround yourself with experienced types. You dont normally find such types in SAE etc..... as noted in an earlier post SAE (like much private education) is about making money (as any business is). There only source of income is you, the student.

LEt me put it another way - I'm an employer and I don't really count an SAE degree as a degree at all.
.

plus
freeking
one million.

Please guys, take it from the horse's mouth.

Narco knows wtf he's talking about!

Narco's studios would rather hire a bright, personable, respectful, quick-on-his-feet crackerjack electrical engineer who knows gear inventory, PTHD, tape op, signal routing and patching, and music theory and production like the back of his hand - and takes initiative to get things done during down time - instead of waiting around to be told what to do, promoting personal projects to clients, and texting friends every 2 seconds.

Success in this business is largely about INITIATIVE, ruthless relentless and endless persistent ambition, business acumen, personal skills and charisma, adaptability, networking and self-promotion, developing strong collaborative relationships, and a ****load of luck and timing.

And oh yeah, knowledge and skill count a little. And sometimes ethics and integrity are good for something.

Reliability is imperative. Thinking on your feet, multi-tasking and taking initiative are imperative.

But talent and education are far from the barometers for success.

If you have a degree in music tech, and you don't provide or embody any of the above, good luck getting work.

You want to spend your money on education, fine.

Just remember, this isn't rocket science, and as Narco says - professionals DO, they don't typically TEACH.

There are some exceptions to this rule, but they are the exceptions.

Schools are there primarily to take your money.

Once they have your money, they don't give a **** about you - and will almost CERTAINLY not find you any work.

If you're the kind of person who can only learn in school, fine.

Personally, if you have your heart set on learning music tech, I would find a professional mentor and go work my ass of with and for that person. Be their slave. Learn EVERYTHING about being a professional before you start dumping your money into some black hole of poverty and unemployment.

I think schools in general are a rip off - ESPECIALLY, music schools!!

.
Old 10th February 2013
  #40
Just by co-incidence I was looking at a few courses over the weekend - Full Sail, Pyramind, SAE. I was quite shocked at the prices. In the thousands.
I was half considering doing something for fun, perhaps learn more about Ableton, be pushed into doing some projects i wouldn't normally do.
It would be even better to get some credit at the end of it. But what most seemed to be offering is a 'manufacturer diploma'.
So at the end of one to three years and a few thousand dollars you can claim you know a DAW to the satisfaction of Avid or Ableton.
What a crock.
Old 10th February 2013
  #41
Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisso View Post
Just by co-incidence I was looking at a few courses over the weekend - Full Sail, Pyramind, SAE. I was quite shocked at the prices. In the thousands.
I was half considering doing something for fun, perhaps learn more about Ableton, be pushed into doing some projects i wouldn't normally do.
It would be even better to get some credit at the end of it. But what most seemed to be offering is a 'manufacturer diploma'.
So at the end of one to three years and a few thousand dollars you can claim you know a DAW to the satisfaction of Avid or Ableton.
What a crock.
.

Indeed. Total rip off - preying on the young, naive and star-struck.

There's absolutely no need to spend this kind of money.

I'm sure ANY one of your expert friends would be happy to personally tutor you one-on-one in a slamming professional facility for way less than that! And the degree is virtually meaningless.

I went to visit Berklee last year, and was horrified at the facilities available.

To get a large institution to catch up with technology at the rate it's evolving is literally impossible.

Often times, the course offered at these schools is based on gear which is already generations older than what people are using in pro studios NOW.

Think about it.

By the time you apply to the school, get accepted and take out student loans (which I wouldn't recommend in a million years ), go through the program learning older hardware and software, and finally graduate and look for work, the new generations of software and hardware are already another generation or two beyond your grasp.

So you're always behind the curve.

You're literally WAY better off just going to an expert friend or studio with the latest gear, and paying them to teach you one-on-one. Many pro studios and producers and engineers are offering services like this now (partially because of limited professional work!)

So you can save money, incur ZERO debt, and spend your money setting up your own studio on gear that will actually hold it's value - or even appreciate (!)

The school thing just sucks on so many levels.

The advantages to school are: specialized workshops and ensembles, (hopefully) experienced teachers, (hopefully) resources for networking and collaborating, exposure to lots of data, gear, performance spaces, ideas and new people, etc.

My problem is that since professional work opportunities are so limited (to non-existent) when you graduate, the thought of going into debt () to learn last year's software and hardware for some meaningless degree that will not help you find work just seems ridiculous.

I think one-on-one study in a private professional facility (or via Skype, etc.) is the way to go. And you can start with a few hours, and see if it's even something you really want to get into.

Again, more and more producers and engineers are doing this. I think this serves the student WAY better. Plus, you can learn at your OWN pace!

Just my $0.02...

.
Old 11th February 2013
  #42
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Daniel Antix's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheLastByte View Post
Indeed true....though you Can not Equate UNI with AIM surely not.....No....!
Out of curiosity, just how many hours did you rack up on the SSLG+ More then 10 (Solo) and around 30 (Group?)......Awaiting Sir!
Cheers
J.

solo? not many. 4 hours a week for 4 years with my class... I was lucky that in the last 2 years of my degree there was only 2 of us in the year so that was fine. I don't think we were even allowed to book the studio alone back then... can't remember. It was still functioning as a professional studio back then too.
Old 11th February 2013
  #43
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Daniel Antix View Post
solo? not many. 4 hours a week for 4 years with my class... I was lucky that in the last 2 years of my degree there was only 2 of us in the year so that was fine. I don't think we were even allowed to book the studio alone back then... can't remember. It was still functioning as a professional studio back then too.
Lol....... I helped to build that room - when the SSL/G+ came of the truck and Hoisted off by crane arm.....All this sea water came dripping out like a Hollywood stage set for Titanic......To say the owners and the Staff were shocked is to say, the baby was born of another tribe! The Phone calls started to SSL HQ and the sh*t didn't hit the fan....well it did though not just yet we went about installing the beast in a very Pro fashion & it was actually that the SSL had been placed as DECK CARGO that was the real pain - corrosion, rust, parts, and boards socked in salt. That day I'm pretty sure I booked solid every Industrial Heat dryer for a week blowing Air in to get the SSL Dry! Add to this the room was one of the 1st floating on springs like the old Air in Piccadilly Circus - and the guys going "Bust" was sad indeed!

Daniel That Sux hug bollocks!
More so very sad - 4 hours a week!
After 4 Years!
I would have jobbed the teacher one, at the end of year for sure!
Oh dear!
worse you were 2nd left in class after 4 years!
And that's how they make their dream pedalling bullsh*t money!
This is the whole deal - kids leave school, don't want uni, then convince their parents to pay up the tuition fee, start a band on the side, and get busy learning every 101 saga that exists at AIM! Thank god you had the sense to get out and look into Uni and other places, the carnage left by these people is criminal - and worse now Hex covered! Maybe that's good now as - No Engineer - No Paying it Back!
Lol!
J.
(Not saying you did that) though I know it's rife!
Old 11th February 2013
  #44
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheLastByte View Post
Lol....... I helped to build that room - when the SSL/G+ came of the truck and Hoisted off by crane arm.....All this sea water came dripping out like a Hollywood stage set for Titanic......To say the owners and the Staff were shocked is to say, the baby was born of another tribe! The Phone calls started to SSL HQ and the sh*t didn't hit the fan....well it did though not just yet we went about installing the beast in a very Pro fashion & it was actually that the SSL had been placed as DECK CARGO that was the real pain - corrosion, rust, parts, and boards socked in salt. That day I'm pretty sure I booked solid every Industrial Heat dryer for a week blowing Air in to get the SSL Dry! Add to this the room was one of the 1st floating on springs like the old Air in Piccadilly Circus - and the guys going "Bust" was sad indeed!

Daniel That Sux hug bollocks!
More so very sad - 4 hours a week!
After 4 Years!
I would have jobbed the teacher one, at the end of year for sure!
Oh dear!
worse you were 2nd left in class after 4 years!
And that's how they make their dream pedalling bullsh*t money!
This is the whole deal - kids leave school, don't want uni, then convince their parents to pay up the tuition fee, start a band on the side, and get busy learning every 101 saga that exists at AIM! Thank god you had the sense to get out and look into Uni and other places, the carnage left by these people is criminal - and worse now Hex covered! Maybe that's good now as - No Engineer - No Paying it Back!
Lol!
J.
(Not saying you did that) though I know it's rife!
.

Wow, holy smokes!

.
Old 12th February 2013
  #45
Lives for gear
 

Who actually owns AIM now?....I do know it's now a different setup.....well you'd hope so!

Anyhoo - Onwards!

I would honestly say to anyone wanting to get a total inside view on being an Assistant/ and/or Tape Op these days that you need to take control.

Buy a Daw
Mac would be great as you can run Windows Setup's as well!
Hakintosh might work well, though could trip up w/ certain Interfaces & cause
grief. Knowing Both is always good!
Grab as many Free Plug In's as possible - buy cheap one's if your DAW has crap ones - DAW's like Reaper are very cheap, almost free compared to a PT HD Rig - A small PT Daw will help on that side though!
And basic Pro Hardware.
I.E Pre,
Comp,
Lim,
Eq,
Reverb,
Daw,
Interface,
Convertors
Small Console,
Headphones,
A Handful of Mic's (Say 1 LDC and 2 SDC for Stereo, a Few Big Dynamic Mic's, a couple 58's & 57's, Cheap ribbon & mod it etc),
Speakers,
Midi Controller -
Make a Bunch of Bass Traps etc
Etc
(Add anything missing)

Then Make sure it's all Quality - Stuff you can easily Re-sell and Trade on, you wan't the best you can afford in terms of pieces of gear - not cheap semipro - though fully Pro! As much as you'd spend 1st year at SAE/JMC etc. (I know that's a very wide ranging statement these days.) As so much gear can be used in many ways, and Upgrades & Modifications are easily done on Mid end Equipment making them better quality equipment: Grabbing a Reel to Reel recording and knowing Alignment will also help in leaps and bounds, many guys still have Analog Tape as a Compass - Knowing that sound could well be a huge advantage, even if rarely used! (This will also give you insight into Hardware/Software emulations) Read up on CLASP systems, and all the "Older Digital Technology" in John Woram's Books! Learn your Volts to Farads & Loads in loss of 1000 meter's capacitance from your watts to Decibels dBm/dBu to K-Meter scales and let nothing Impede you - know these tables of how the Audio world works! Make sure this is in your Personal Heads Hard drive, and locked down, so when your spinning at 12000-RPM, your not panicking! Leave room for more storage!

Then While at the same time: - Read, Read, Read!

Buy The Recording Engineers Handbook by John. L Woram, maybe 1 other like F. Alton Everest on Acoustics, another on say your preferred field though also another book that is also all encompassing of Film/Post, TV, Radio, Broadcast in general! Hilary Wyatt & Tim Amyes cover all this in Audio Post For TV & Film etc - Study up and track bands for free/part payment - Study the same time, learn you signal flow, and full electronics' etc Pull stuff apart - put it back together again! Don't Hang on Forum Hype! Places like GS can be a useful resource (I found more stuff doing Google searches on GS then searching on the actual site!) As Google show all GS server Files & thus Posts & Threads from way-back to 2000 and before etc. Though never just go with what GS says is the in thing of the moment or cool flavour of the GS month - we all know the GS tidal flow! and it changes. Then really Pick peoples brains, be cool, and start working at a few small places getting experience & then ask for references while getting to know others (Kinda word of mouth references are very cool!).

Then Put Together a Package:
1.A Demo Reel/CD.
2.References
3.Experience gained,
4.Books poured through
5.Contacts with Artists
6.Be prepared to make coffee, clean up, go get stuff.
7.Do the long hours
8.Load in Gear
9.Bump out Gear
10.Make more contacts
11.Be affable, friendly & have a great sense of humour!
12.Make sure YOU have your own 3rd party Insurance alongside Insurance covering any outcomes that you may predict would happen in a Studio! (So basically no one has to worry about you and OH&S etc....your covered, that would certainly impress me!)
13. Stick at it, learn your chops
14. know basic Musical theory & harmony structure.
15. Know where to grab/and/or keep spare Tubes, Pick's a Soldering Iron, a few Extra Stands, Headphones, have a good relationship with a Music Store so Skins, Strings & Things are always on tap and/or account - Keep this toolbox in the boot of your 1982 Cortina!
16. Follow Bands by going to Gigs - Offer FOH/Monitors to them in small venues.
17. Make sure, whomever your working for/with knows your hungry for knowledge and to learn anything and everything gratis - even if not fully audio related! The more areas you've gained experience the more you can trade on that!
18. Know the owners/Bookers/Managers of venues.
19. keep all this knowledge on tap!
20. Be on Call 24/7 no matter what!
21. Know the best delivery formats and introduce yourself to Mastering Houses as well. Also Note how clients like certain things done! Observe how Engineers and Clients interact - find the fine line!
22. After you've done the Study and enough Practical hit the street!
23. Be prepared to sleep on the Studio couch!
24. Learn psychology 101-1001.
25. Always know where Takeout's and Pubs and/or colourful characters can be found!
26. Forget the next 10 years and the 500 GF's and one nighters your mates are having!
27. Know the TV, Advertising & Radio Station Secretaries - tell them what your Aiming for - Word of mouth can travel in lightening speed!
28. Be prepared to do "Cold" Walk in's & Walk Out's if a Live Engineer fails and you get the call!
29. Have confidence, make people feel at ease and that you might just be gently indispensable to them at that moment - Don't know it all even if you think you do or even if you do! More so then the guy at the desk? - Keep it under your Hat for now!
30. Hit the Pavement - No phone calls to Studios, No Emails etc - Front Up! Solid, confident and strong in yourself and Get that Full Time Gig. Ask for a small expenses wage after a certain 6-8 month period, it won't be much, though you'll feel good about the past and what you've been through to get here! Say you wan't a Mentor, that you want the extra experience on the High Level - that you believe you can do it, you master plan is your own facility - though you want the solid grounding, after all - Studios are idiosyncratic - not at all like SAE and the schools like! They all work differently.

Start taking Part time Courses at AFTERS - Yeap they Co$t money, though you'll meet people and get an intro, this could be as a Gaffer, Rigger, Best boy or boom operators assistant, even a Clapper! Work Free for Final year Students doing their Government funded final year Short Film for free! Do anything, gain credits, ask to be credited! Offer to play the Dude on the Pup veranda & waive any fee! (Speaking on Film costs money - Silent parts are cheaper x 10.) Be a walk past or crowd participant, anything really! At least you'll be immortalised on the screen forever! Even if only you and the Crew know it!

Remember:
Tropfest
Sydney Short Fim Festival
Melbourne Short Film Festival
SBS/ABC 2 short Film/Doco Festivals
(Really look for a groove anywhere and take it - it's all experience!)

Lastly although their are now not so many "Listed Studios" their are Hundreds of Private facilities that have as good or now better gear then many "Mid Studios" and even some "High end Studios" had back in the Jurassic hey day! If people don't have commercial premises, often they just don't publicly advertise - this also keeps the Break in's & rates/rent etc at minimal Levels. Then Knock on the doors - ask for nothing save what "You can do to enhance the owners fortunes and gig's coming through the doors.

I rushed this......though I hope it helps some young Aspiring Engineer!
TLB.
P.S Lastly AIM high - though don't go their!
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