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Audio Visual Technician Careers

Audio Visual Technicians do a lot of cool things that you probably didn't know they do. In fact, they're behind the equipment used for most live events. They set up, operate, maintain and repair the microphones, video recorders, projectors, lighting and sound mixing equipment that are used at these events.

It's because of audio visual technicians that we can hear a concert from the nosebleeds and watch a sweet light show before a sporting event. Since the events technicians cover vary, the work hours also vary. From nights to evenings and everything in between, the show cannot go on without an audio visual technician present.

What Does an Audio Visual Technician Do

Broadcast and sound engineering technicians set up, operate, and maintain the electrical equipment for radio programs, television broadcasts, concerts, sound recordings, and movies.

Duties

Broadcast and sound engineering technicians typically do the following:

  • Operate, monitor, and adjust audio, video, lighting, and broadcast equipment to ensure consistent quality
  • Set up and take down equipment for events and live performances
  • Record speech, music, and other sounds on recording equipment or computers, sometimes using complex software
  • Synchronize sounds and dialogue with action taking place on television or in movie productions
  • Convert video and audio records to digital formats for editing on computers
  • Install audio, video, and lighting equipment in hotels, offices, and schools
  • Report any problems that arise with complex equipment and make routine repairs
  • Keep records of recordings and equipment used

These workers may be called broadcast or sound engineering technicians, operators, or engineers. At smaller radio and television stations, broadcast and sound technicians may do many jobs. At larger stations, they are likely to do more specialized work, although their job assignments may vary from day to day. They set up and operate audio and video equipment, and the kind of equipment they use may depend on the particular type of technician or industry.

Broadcast and sound engineering technicians share many of the same responsibilities, but their duties may vary with their specific area of focus.

Audio and video equipment technicians set up and operate audio and video equipment. They also connect wires and cables and set up and operate sound and mixing boards and related electronic equipment.

Audio and video equipment technicians work with microphones, speakers, video screens, projectors, video monitors, and recording equipment. The equipment they operate is used for meetings, concerts, sports events, conventions, and news conferences. In addition, they may operate equipment at conferences and at presentations for businesses and universities.

Audio and video equipment technicians may also set up and operate custom lighting systems. They frequently work directly with clients and must provide solutions to problems in a simple, clear manner.

Broadcast technicians set up, operate, and maintain equipment that regulates the signal strength, clarity, and ranges of sounds and colors for radio or television broadcasts. They operate transmitters to broadcast radio or television programs and use computer programs to edit audio and video recordings.

Sound engineering technicians operate computers and equipment that record, synchronize, mix, or reproduce music, voices, or sound effects in recording studios, sporting arenas, theater productions, or movie and video productions. They record audio performances or events and may combine tracks that were recorded separately to create a multilayered final product. Sound engineering technicians operate transmitters to broadcast radio or television programs and use computers to program the equipment and edit audio recordings.

The following are examples of types of broadcast and sound engineering technicians:

Recording engineers operate and maintain video- and sound-recording equipment. These engineers work with computers, computer networks, and software to produce special effects for radio, television, or movies.

Sound mixers, or rerecording mixers, produce soundtracks for movies or television programs. They rerecord songs or compositions that already have been commercially released. After filming or recording is complete, these workers often dub the final product by adding or removing sounds.

Field technicians set up and operate portable equipment outside the studio—for example, for television news coverage. Because this coverage requires so much electronic equipment and the technology is changing so rapidly, many technicians are assigned exclusively to news coverage teams.

Chief engineers, transmission engineers, and broadcast field supervisors oversee other technicians and maintain broadcasting equipment.

How To Become an Audio Visual Technician

Broadcast and sound engineering technicians typically need postsecondary education. Depending on the work they do, it could either be a postsecondary nondegree award or an associate’s degree.  

Education

Audio and video equipment technicians, as well as sound engineering technicians, typically need a postsecondary nondegree award or certificate, whereas broadcast technicians typically need an associate’s degree. However, in some cases workers in any of these occupations may need only a high school diploma to be eligible for entry-level positions.

Postsecondary nondegree programs for audio and video equipment technicians and sound engineering technicians may take several months to a year to complete. The programs include hands-on experience with the equipment used in many entry-level positions.

Broadcast technicians typically need an associate’s degree. In addition to courses in math and science, coursework for prospective broadcast technicians should emphasize practical skills such as video editing and production management.

Prospective broadcast and sound engineering technicians should complete high school courses in math, physics, and electronics. They must have excellent computer skills to be successful.

Training

Because technology is constantly improving, technicians often enroll in continuing education courses and they receive on-the-job training to become skilled in new equipment and hardware. On-the-job training includes topics such as setting up cables or automation systems, testing electrical equipment, learning the codes and standards of the industry, and following safety procedures.

Training for new hires can be accomplished in a variety of ways, depending on the types of products and services the employer provides. Although some apprenticeship programs do exist, more frequently a new technician will accompany a more experienced technician to get the training and skills necessary for advancement.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

Although not required by most employers, earning voluntary certification will offer advantages in getting a job as a broadcast or sound engineering technician. Certification tells employers that the technician meets certain industry standards and has kept up to date with new technologies.

For example, the Society of Broadcast Engineers offers eight broadcast engineering certifications, two operator certifications, and two broadcast networking certifications. All of them require passing an exam. Similarly, InfoComm International offers an audiovisual Certified Technology Specialist credential.

Other Experience

Practical experience working in a high school or college audiovisual department also can help prepare someone to be an audio and video equipment technician.

Advancement

Although many broadcast and sound engineering technicians work first in small markets or at small stations in big markets, after they gain the necessary experience and skills they often transfer to larger, better paying radio or television stations. Few large stations hire someone without previous experience, and they value more specialized skills.

Experienced workers with strong technical skills can become supervisory technicians or chief engineers. To become chief engineer at large television stations, technicians typically need a bachelor’s degree in engineering or computer science.

Important Qualities

Communication skills. Technicians need to communicate with supervisors and coworkers to ensure that clients’ needs are met and that equipment is set up properly before broadcasts, live performances, and presentations.

Computer skills. Technicians use computer systems to program equipment and edit audio and video recordings.

Manual dexterity. Some technicians set up audio and visual equipment and cables, a job that requires a steady hand and good hand-eye coordination. Others adjust small knobs, dials, and sliders during radio and television broadcasts and live performances.

Problem-solving skills. Technicians need to recognize equipment problems and propose possible solutions to them. Employers typically desire applicants with a variety of skills, such as setting up equipment, maintaining the equipment, and troubleshooting and solving any problems that arise.

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Average Salary
$43,431
Average Salary
Job Growth Rate
8%
Job Growth Rate
Job Openings
18,341
Job Openings

Audio Visual Technician Career Paths

Top Careers Before Audio Visual Technician

Top Careers After Audio Visual Technician

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Average Salary for an Audio Visual Technician

Audio Visual Technicians in America make an average salary of $43,431 per year or $21 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $57,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $32,000 per year.
Average Salary
$43,431

Best Paying Cities

City
ascdesc
Average Salarydesc
East Palo Alto, CA
Salary Range36k - 61k$48k$47,728
New York, NY
Salary Range37k - 59k$47k$47,127
Chicago, IL
Salary Range36k - 57k$46k$45,685
Arlington, VA
Salary Range35k - 55k$44k$44,017
Salt Lake City, UT
Salary Range34k - 54k$43k$43,303
Duluth, GA
Salary Range32k - 49k$40k$39,979
$25k
$61k

Recently Added Salaries

Job TitleCompanyascdescCompanyascdescStart DateascdescSalaryascdesc
Audio Visual Technician II
Audio Visual Technician II
Florida Gulf Coast University
Florida Gulf Coast University
03/19/2021
03/19/2021
$44,78703/19/2021
$44,787
IT Audio Visual Technician
IT Audio Visual Technician
City of Boise
City of Boise
03/11/2021
03/11/2021
$43,82703/11/2021
$43,827
Audio-Visual Technician
Audio-Visual Technician
The Salvation Army Western
The Salvation Army Western
02/25/2021
02/25/2021
$29,21802/25/2021
$29,218
Commercial Audio Visual Technician
Commercial Audio Visual Technician
Tradestar, Inc.
Tradestar, Inc.
01/31/2021
01/31/2021
$29,21801/31/2021
$29,218
Audio Visual Technician/Courier
Audio Visual Technician/Courier
University of Utah
University of Utah
01/22/2021
01/22/2021
$20,87001/22/2021
$20,870
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Audio Visual Technician Resumes

Designing and figuring out what to include on your resume can be tough, not to mention time-consuming. That's why we put together a guide that is designed to help you craft the perfect resume for becoming an Audio Visual Technician. If you're needing extra inspiration, take a look through our selection of templates that are specific to your job.

Learn How To Write an Audio Visual Technician Resume

At Zippia, we went through countless Audio Visual Technician resumes and compiled some information about how best to optimize them. Here are some suggestions based on what we found, divided by the individual sections of the resume itself.

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Audio Visual Technician Demographics

Gender

male

81.8 %

female

14.1 %

unknown

4.1 %

Ethnicity

White

66.9 %

Hispanic or Latino

15.5 %

Black or African American

10.1 %

Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

60.1 %

French

9.3 %

Japanese

4.2 %
See More Demographics

Audio Visual Technician Education

Majors

Degrees

Bachelors

45.6 %

Associate

21.9 %

Certificate

17.5 %

Top Colleges for Audio Visual Technicians

1. Johns Hopkins University

Baltimore, MD • Private

In-State Tuition
$53,740
Enrollment
5,567

2. Stanford University

Stanford, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$51,354
Enrollment
7,083

3. Harvard University

Cambridge, MA • Private

In-State Tuition
$50,420
Enrollment
7,582

4. University of Pennsylvania

Philadelphia, PA • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,584
Enrollment
10,764

5. New York University

New York, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$51,828
Enrollment
26,339

6. New Mexico State University

Las Cruces, NM • Public

In-State Tuition
$6,686
Enrollment
11,139

7. University of Georgia

Athens, GA • Public

In-State Tuition
$11,830
Enrollment
29,474

8. Cornell University

Ithaca, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,188
Enrollment
15,105

9. University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Champaign, IL • Public

In-State Tuition
$15,094
Enrollment
32,974

10. Purdue University

West Lafayette, IN • Public

In-State Tuition
$9,992
Enrollment
33,495
See More Education Info
Job type you want
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Part Time
Internship
Temporary

Top Skills For an Audio Visual Technician

The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 38.7% of audio visual technicians listed customer service on their resume, but soft skills such as communication skills and computer skills are important as well.

Best States For an Audio Visual Technician

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as an audio visual technician. The best states for people in this position are Nevada, Rhode Island, Connecticut, and New Hampshire. Audio visual technicians make the most in Nevada with an average salary of $55,398. Whereas in Rhode Island and Connecticut, they would average $54,884 and $54,566, respectively. While audio visual technicians would only make an average of $54,241 in New Hampshire, you would still make more there than in the rest of the country. We determined these as the best states based on job availability and pay. By finding the median salary, cost of living, and using the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Location Quotient, we narrowed down our list of states to these four.

1. Connecticut

Total Audio Visual Technician Jobs:
323
Highest 10% Earn:
$85,000
Location Quotient:
1.57
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

2. Vermont

Total Audio Visual Technician Jobs:
65
Highest 10% Earn:
$83,000
Location Quotient:
1.37
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

3. Delaware

Total Audio Visual Technician Jobs:
86
Highest 10% Earn:
$81,000
Location Quotient:
1.11
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here
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How Do Audio Visual Technician Rate Their Jobs?

Zippia Official Logo

4.0

Operations Coordinator of AVMay 2019

4.0

Zippia Official LogoOperations Coordinator of AVMay 2019

What do you like the most about working as Audio Visual Technician?

Lack of micromanagement. Show More

What do you NOT like?

Seasonal spikes it workload during certain quarters and lack of work in off season for conferences. Show More

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Top Audio Visual Technician Employers

1. Marriott International
4.4
Avg. Salary: 
$37,961
Audio Visual Technicians Hired: 
49+
2. KVL Audio Visual Services
3.4
Avg. Salary: 
$37,667
Audio Visual Technicians Hired: 
39+
3. America's Best Contacts & Eyeglasses
4.1
Avg. Salary: 
$32,094
Audio Visual Technicians Hired: 
33+
4. Best Buy
4.8
Avg. Salary: 
$54,956
Audio Visual Technicians Hired: 
31+
5. Audio Fidelity Communications
4.5
Avg. Salary: 
$38,567
Audio Visual Technicians Hired: 
29+
6. United States Army
4.0
Avg. Salary: 
$38,065
Audio Visual Technicians Hired: 
28+

Audio Visual Technician Videos

Updated October 2, 2020