This course introduces the fundamentals of music technology geared to the needs of today's professional musician. One of the most significant challenges facing musicians today is mastering the skills required to continually adapt to a changing technology base. Musicians today must understand and be prepared for the fact that this technology base is moving more rapidly than it can be assimilated. The course topics will give an overview of all aspects of the current technology with the primary goal of enabling students to make intelligent decisions in evaluating future technological needs.
The Berklee Internet Radio Network Workshop supports students who wish to participate in the activities of the station, formalizing and identifying their participation in their transcripts. The course accommodates a wide variety of student skills and interests, directing participants into existing station committees: programming (DJs, production, scheduling, evaluation), promotion (public relations on campus and beyond), business and legal (maintenance of approvals, permissions, and licensing processes; organization of business flow within the station), and operations (technical backbone of station operations, e.g. website development, broadcast issues, recording, facilities development, and maintenance).
Ableton Live is a powerful tool that allows musicians to develop musical ideas in a unique non-linear environment that presents a fundamentally different way of working from other software used in music production. In this course, students will learn to create new musical ideas, and produce electronic arrangements using the software instruments and effects that come with Live. Emphasis will be placed on the student developing an individual production style that can be used to write and produce new works as well as create remixes and prepare songs and compositions for electronic performance.
Building upon basic concepts and skills learned in MTEC-111, Introduction to Music Technology, this course will give students an opportunity to further develop their music production skills using Apple’s Logic Pro X DAW software. By completing a number of hands-on projects and assignments, students will advance their knowledge of MIDI sequencing using software instruments; audio recording and editing; electronic orchestration using synthesizers, samplers, loops and Logic’s Drummer; and mixing and mastering using common types of audio effects. Emphasis will be placed on developing strategies to effectively produce any style of music. Logic is a powerful tool for music creation, and students are encouraged to develop their original musical ideas in this class.
This course focuses on developing core sound synthesis skills that can be applied to various types of synthesizers used in modern music production. Students will start exploring synthesis using the modular systems in electronic production and design lab B51 and apply those skills to commonly used software instruments. A variety of synthesis techniques will be covered, including subtractive, FM, and sampling. Students will be able to create and modify sounds they can use in their own productions.
In this class the student will use a wide array of music production tools available for the iPad. Emphasis will be placed on scenarios where touchscreen mobile devices offer unique possibilities in the world of music production and performance. Students will explore new avenues for music creation and performance through solo and collaborative projects in a hands-on setting. Projects will include using the iPad as a self-contained production platform, as well as its integration into larger scenarios in music production and performance. Students will need their own iPad for work in the course.
This course provides the student with the basic conceptual and practical skills needed to design sounds used in music and sound production, with a special emphasis on working with film and video games. Students will gain an understanding of basic subtractive synthesis and sampling techniques and design common types of musical sounds and sound effects. Sound sources used in the class will include original synthesizer patches, commercial sound effect libraries, and original field recordings. Common editing and effect processing techniques will be used to adapt these sources to specific needs of a project, as well as to create new and original sounds and effects. Projects will include musical examples as well as an original sound design for a video clip.
This course examines the technical attributes of loudspeakers that assist the recording engineer in creating the best possible product. Topics include basic components of loudspeaker design, driver parameters, sealed and vented enclosures, crossovers, studio monitors, and computer aided analysis systems. Through the process of designing, building, and testing a high performing pair of passive studio monitors, students learn both the technical and artistic considerations required to create loudspeaker designs for studio, consumer, and car audio applications. The course concludes with a critical listening evaluation of the finished speakers.
This course explores the fundamental concepts of audio amplification. Topics include understanding basic circuit designs for class A, AB, and Class D amplifiers. Both vacuum tube and solid state variations are covered. Students will review basic design parameters and build a microphone preamplifier as their final project.
This course provides musicians the opportunity to develop the skills needed to effectively use effects processors in a computer-based live performance. Students will build on the skills developed in MTEC-213, Producing Music in Ableton Live, and explore some of the effects in Live that are commonly used for electronic performance, such as looping, beat slicing, and other DJ-style effects. Emphasis will be placed on developing strategies to support the individual player’s style and the instrument they use to perform.
As an introduction to game audio, this course provides a general overview of the stages involved in producing sound and music for games. It begins with an examination of the role of sound designer and composer, including the responsibilities associated with each. The course begins with typical studio effects and sound manipulation, and addresses technical hurdles encountered in an interactive environment. Advanced concepts and techniques such as recording custom effects, proper integration of audio, and mixing techniques particular to the gaming industry are experienced through collaborative team assignments. Business topics include scheduling, contracts, and finalizing a workflow are presented through out the semester. By the end of this course, the student will have completed full audio including sound design, dialogue, and music for cut scenes and a short game or portion of a game via readily available audio production, scripting, and interactive tools.
This course allows the student to understand the history and business of dance music from its early disco format in the '70s and '80s to its wide variety of current styles and trends. Students write, produce, mix, and remix their work in the related style within the various dance music genres. In order to do this successfully, students are required to familiarize themselves with the current outlets for dance music (i.e. Traxsource, Beatport, In Grooves, etc.) and the current list of artists, producers, DJs, and remixers whose work can be found charted on these industry sites. A full understanding of the inner workings of this popular genre will be necessary for the students to be successful within this field. Three production projects are required.