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Live Sound Fundamentals - Online


Live Sound Fundamentals - Online

Our LSF Online Course comprises of 18 lectures.
• Each lecture comprises of four parts with a video for each part (a total of 72 videos).
• Each video is accompanied by:
 - notes, graphics, graphs etc, used in the video
 - 5 multiple choice 'quiz' questions for you to check on your understanding of each lecture content. 
• Each lecture and suite of videos is accompanied by further notes on the subject matter.
• After each lecture with its suite of  videos has been viewed, the suite of videos for the next lecture will become available to you. This is to ensure that the lectures are viewed in the most effective learning order.
• On completing all 18 lectures, there is an optional 54 question exam. If you complete and pass the exam a Certificate of Understanding will be issued to you. If you are not satisfied with your results, after further study, you can re-sit an exam for free and then subsequent re-sits will be charged at £50 plus vat. It is not mandatory to complete the exam at the end of the course. It is your choice. However, if you wish to progress on to our Live Sound Intermediate-Online course (LSI Online), a pass grade on your LSF - Online Certificate of Understanding is strongly recommended.

Lecture 01: Acoustics 1  
   -  Physics of sound

Skills:  Distinguish properties of waveforms. Speed of sound. Identify different waveforms. Identify effects of summation and cancellation. Interpret information from graphic displays.

   Compression and refraction.  Amplitude, frequency and  wavelength. Fundamentals and harmonics. Sine and other complex waveforms. Wave combination, summation and cancellation. 
Speed of sound.
PT1: Physics of Sound
  Sound Wave Definition
   PT2: Physics of Sound
  Properties of Sound
 - Cycle time / period
 - Frequency
 - Amplitude
 - Wavelength
 - Speed of sound
       PT3: Physics of Sound

PT4: Physics of Sound
 Complex waveforms
  Fourier transform
  Special complex waveforms
 - Saw tooth waveform
 - Square Waveform
 - Triangular Waveform
 - White noise
 - Pink Noise

Lecture 02: Electrics  
 - Basic Electrical Theory

Skills:                Identify Conductor and Insulator Materials. Measure electrical properties in a simple circuit. Calculate electrical properties in a simple circuit.                          

Knowledge:   Static electricity fundamental principles.  Difference between conductors and insulators.  Properties of electricity.  hms law. Standard measurements of electricity.
  PT1:Basic Electrical Theory
    Static Electricity
PT2: Basic Electrical Theory 
Atomic Structure
Free electrons in a metal conductor
PT3: Basic Electrical Theory
  Electric Field
  Simple circuit
  Ohm’s law

PT4: Basic Electrical Theory
  Peak to Peak

Lecture 03: Acoustics 2
 - Decibels and Room Acoustics

Skills:              Perform decibel and inverse square law related calculations.  Identify various acoustic phenomena.
Knowledge:   Decibel genesis uses and applications. Use of logarithms in sound pressure measurements.  Inverse square law theory. Sound propagation and its acoustic phenomena.  Room acoustic phenomena.
PT1:  Decibels 
  Pascals as a unit of loudness Ratios and logarithmic values
PT2: Decibels Applications
  Alexander Bell experiments
  Decibels to describe power ratios
  Decibels to describe Amplitude ratios
  Decibels to describe absolute values

  PT3: Sound  Propagation
  Inverse Square Law

PT4: Room Acoustics
  Standing waves
  Room reverb

Lecture 04: Electrics 2    
 - Introduction to Temporary Electrical Systems

Skills:               Cable and Distro choice. Electrical Measurements.  Transformer tapping.  External equipotential bonding.
Knowledge:   Different types of Power sources. Mains Power.  Identifying Power outlets. Sockets and Connectors . Breaker choice and discrimination.
PT1: Introduction
    Understanding Mains
    Electrical Power Generation
    3 Phase power supply
PT2: Hardware and connections
  Understanding power outlets
  Circuit Breakers
  Distro and cable choice
PT3: Transformers and Earthing  
  External Earthing

PT4: Safety and Show routine
  Installation sign-off
  Show monitoring
  Post show

Lecture 05: Electrics 3
 - Signal levels and passive components

Skills:             Skills: Identify the different audio electrical signal standards. Convert audio electrical voltage values into dB values of  different standards. Identify different passive electrical components. Identify the function of passive electrical components into simple electrical circuits.
Knowledge:   Standard values of electric audio signals.  Balanced and shielded electric signal transmission. Microphone sensitivity.
Resistors, capacitors and transformer properties.  Basic impedance theory.  Magnetism and induction theory.
PT1:Electrical Signals
  Electrical signals amplitude
PT:2 Electrical  passive components
  Introduction to impedance
  PT3: Electrical passive components   
  Capacitive reactance

PT4: Electrical passive components 
  Inductive reactance

Lecture 06: Analogue Consoles   
 - Analogue Consoles & Signal Processing

Skills:              Follow a console signal flow diagram. Route signal through and around different analogue consoles. Meter and attenuate an input and outputs correctly. Use direct outs. Assign and use Auxiliary busses for feeding FX and monitors. Assign and use VCA and Mute groups 

Knowledge:   Console Architecture. Function and usage of different components and stages. Concept of gain structure. Bus Architecture. Principle of VCA groups
PT1: Overview and Console Architecture
     Input Stage /Output Stage
  Console Signal Flow/ Block Diagrams
  Input Channel Strip
PT2: Function and usage of different components and stages 
  Pre-Amp functions/ features (insert actual) Mic/Line Level differences
  Direct Outs

 PT3: Bus Architecture   
  Aux Sends and returns
  Mute, Pan, Stereo assign and the channel fader

PT4: Metering, Monitoring VCA’s, Mute Groups and and Concept of Gain Structure 
Metering and Monitoring
  Mute Groups
  VCA Groups
  Gain Structure

Lecture 07: Equalisation
 - Equalisation

Skills:               Operate all different types of EQ  Learn how to use EQ to:  Ensure a flat response of a sound system in an acoustic environment.  Reduce acoustic feedback.  Create a musical mix with maximum clarity.
Knowledge:    Concept of equalisation and the effect it has on audio signals. Different equaliser filters and their purposes in live sound. Why and how EQ is used at various points within the audio transmission path. How equalisers are connected within the signal path.
PT1:Concept and Effect on Audio  
 Complex Sounds and tonal balance
  Overview of EQ
PT:2 Different Filters and their uses  
High and Low pass filters
  Roll off slope
  Band pass filters
  Notch filters
  Shelving EQ’s
  Bell of peaking EQ’s
  Fixed band EQ
  Graphic EQ
  Semi-parametric EQ
  Fully-parametric EQ
  Q-Factor and bandwidth

PT3: How and why EQ is connected to various points
   in the signal path 
  Directional microphones and proximity effect
  EQ sections on consoles
  EQ’s on mix outputs
  EQ’s in speaker management of crossovers

PT4: Summary 
  Complex sounds and tonal balance
  Different EQ filters
  EQ at different points in the signal flow

Lecture 08: Dynamics 
 - Dynamics

Skills:               Use compression correctly in a musical mix.  Use noise gating correctly in a musical mix. Be able to connect dynamics units correctly within the system. 
Knowledge:   Types of dynamic control and the effect they have on the input signal.  Different functionality of the four dynamics units:  Compressors, Limiters, Noise Gates and Expanders.  Controls on dynamics units.
PT1: Dynamics
  Dynamic Range
  Different types of Dynamic control
  Compressors and Limiters
PT2: Dynamics 
  The controls of compressors and limiters  Unit
PT3: Dynamics  
  Hard knee and soft knee
  Stereo linking
  Side Chaining
  Noise Gates and Expanders

PT4: Dynamics
Connecting dynamics units within the system
  Dynamic EQ
  Multiband Compression
  Limiters in PA Systems

Lecture 09: Effects
 - Effects

Skills:              Choose appropriate effects units relative to the application. Connect effects units to the console. Configure and operate effects units.

Conceptual difference between other types of signal processing (EQ, Dynamics and Effects).  How FX are connected in live  sound . Different effect algorithms and their control parameters.
PT1: Effects Units
     Signal reshaping versus signal augmentation
  Connecting Effects Units within the system
PT2: Effects Units 
  Delaying and adding one or more copies to the mix (Signal augmentation)
  Delay or echo effects
  Main Controls on a Delay Unit

PT3: Effects Units  
  Artificial Reverb

PT4: Effects Units
Modulation Effects
  Distortion Effects

Lecture 10: Introduction to Front of House (FOH)  
 - Introduction to Front of House 

Skills:               Set-up FOH sound console and racks.  Choose best location for FOH sound console.  Safe use of Easy-Tilts.  Line check and sound check. Understand noise restrictions.  Record your settings.
Knowledge:   Key elements for prep and set-up of FOH control area. Understanding of FOH console.  Role of the FOH technician. Noise restriction terminology.
PT1: Key elements for prep and set-up of FOH control area 
     Key elements for prep and set-up of FOH control area
  Function of FOH
  FOH Tech roles and responsibilities
  Footprint and set-up location
  Prepping FOH
  Space Consideration
PT2: Easy Tilt  
  Learning how to safely use an Easy-Tilt
PT3: Component Check /Set-Up  
  Component Check /Set-Up

PT4: Other Elements of FOH 
Load in
Use of the shout system talk-to-stage  
Line system and sound checking
 Noise restrictions
 Recording your settings
 Tech-ing hints and tips

Lecture 11: Microphones 1
 - Microphones 1

Skills:              Ability to identify different microphone types. Ability to make appropriate microphone choices.
Knowledge:   Understand dynamic and condenser microphone operating principles. Understand the advantages and disadvantages of both.
PT1:Microphones 1 
 Introduction to microphones and their operating principles
   Dynamic or moving coil mics  
Ribbon mics
  Condenser or Capacitor mics
   Valve mics
   Electret & Back-Electret Condenser mics
 PT:2 Microphones 1  
Directional characteristics and polar response patterns
  Polar response graphs
  Sensitivity scale
PT3: Microphones 1
 Different mic pick-up patterns, including:  
Omnidirectional (or Omni)
   Figure of 8 (Fig 8 or Bi-Directional)   Cardioid
   Pressure Zone or Boundary mics

PT4: Microphones 1
  How polar response patterns are created, both with physical housing design and electrically
  Frequency Response Charts
  Proximity effect
  Transient Response
  Output Characteristics

Lecture 12: Prep Process 1 and Stagecraft 
 - Prep Process 1 and Stagecraft

Skills:               Read / produce technical specifications for an artist or band. Read / produce a stage plan and channel list.  Correctly identify stage areas. Make a cable loom. Set up mic stands correctly.
Knowledge:   Understand the procedures involved in prep.  Being familiar with relevant documentation for a  concert/festival/event.  Stage terminology conventions. Roles of the Stage Technician and associated duties.  Conventions used in cabling the stage in respect of power distribution, signal cabling and patch.  Conventions used in for labelling and stage marking.
PT1: Prep Process
     What is Prep?
  Gathering information
  Technical riders
PT2: Prep Process 
  Power Distribution
  Loudspeaker System
  Microphones and D.I.’s
  RF Racks
  FOH and Monitor control equipment
  Line system

PT3: Stagecraft  
  Stage and terminology
  Stage power

PT4: Stagecraft
Main stage box and spilt
 Monitor world
Signal cabling and patching
Microphones and stands
The show

Lecture 13: Monitors 1
 - Analogue and wedges

Skills:              The ability to define stage space. Wire up and component check a monitor system. Foundation of being able to EQ a wedge. Ability to read a tech rider. How to EQ a wedge. 
Knowledge:   Principles and purpose of monitoring. Equipment involved and its application. How best to assist a monitor engineer.                                          
Function of monitors / monitoring in live sound
  What is monitoring
and why is it used?
  Function of monitor speakers
  The role of the monitor engineer 
PT:2 Equipment 
  Speakers – the different designs
PT3: Pre show procedure:   
  Setting up
  Component check
  Line Check
  Sound Check

PT4: General overview and conclusions  :  
  Monitor technician duties
  Mixing tips and hints

Lecture 14: System 1
 - Controllers and Amplifiers

Skills:                 Identify, understand and use Frequency Dividing Networks/ Crossover. Identify, understand and use Amplifiers.   
Knowledge:     Frequency Dividing Networks / Crossover function and application. Amplifier function and application.
PT1:Last stages of the path of transmission: 
 Line level to acoustic
    Frequency dividing networks
  Crossover features
PT:2 Last stages of the path of transmission:
  Polarity and phase
  Crossover advanced features
  Passive and active crossovers
  Digital crossovers
PT3: Last stages of the path of transmission:   
  Line level to acoustic
 How an amplifier works
  Amplifier power supplies
  Output devices

PT4: Last stages of the path of transmission:  
  Line level to acoustic
    Power and impedance matching
  Amplifier gain
  Amplifier’s operational mode
  Damping factor
  Connections and controls
  Amplifier with integrated controllers  
Amplifier operation

Lecture 15: System 2
 - Loudspeakers

Skills:              Identify and understand the use of drivers. Identify and understand loudspeaker enclosure uses. Identify and understand uses of a loudspeaker system.

Knowledge:   Loudspeaker function, construction and application.  Loudspeaker enclosure function and application. Basic understanding of speaker systems.
Loudspeakers definition
   Loudspeakers construction
Loudspeakers characteristics

PT:2 Drivers and Enclosures
Driver types
  Loudspeaker enclosures
  Types of enclosure
PT3: Sound System Types  
 System types
  Point source systems
  Line array systems

PT4: Acoustic Coupling and Active vs Passive systems     
  Coupled and uncoupled sources
  Self-powered loudspeaker systems
  Powered vs unpowered systems

Lecture 16: Radio Frequency (RF)  
 - Introduction to Radio Frequency 

Skills:                Identify key elements of an RF system.  Set-up and utilise a basic RF system.

Knowledge:   Electromagnetic Spectrum.  RF Transmission and Reception.  Diversity and Companding.  Intermodulation and Frequency Planning.  Antennae, Cables and RF Gain Structure.  RF Licencing.
PT1:Radio Frequency 
 What id RF?
  Electromagnetic Spectrum
  Types of Transmission
  Basic System Components
  RF Modulation
PT:2 Radio Frequency  
  Pre-emphasis and De-emphasis
  Bandpass Filters

PT3: Radio Frequency  
  Signal-to-Noise Ratio
  Diversity and multi-path
  Active Antenna Gain
  RF Gain
  Inverse Square law
  Free Space Path Loss
  Link deficit
   Skin effect

PT4: Radio Frequency   
  Radio Propagation
  Power Measurements
  Frequency Spectrum
  Frequency Planning

Lecture 17: Introduction to Digital
 - Introduction to Digital

Skills:               Identify the components of a Digital Audio System. Set-up a basic Digital Audio System. Correctly configure clocking in a digital system.

Knowledge:    Benefits and shortcomings of Digital Processing. Fundamentals of Digital Computation.  Key parameters of Digital  Audio Conversion.
PT1:Digital Data Basics  
 What is Digital?
  Bits, Bytes & Binary
  Software, Firmware & Hardware
PT:2 Digital Audio Sampling 
What is Digital Audio?
  Digital Audio –Pros & Cons
  Sample Rate, Bit Depth & The Nyquist Theory
  Clocking & Jitter
  Sample Rate Conversion (SRC)
PT3: Digital Audio Sampling (DSP)  
  Anatomy of a Live Digital Mixing System
  What is DSP?
  Capabilities of DSP

PT4: Transmission & Device Control    
  Digital Audio Transmission
  MIDI SysEx
  Open Sound Control (OSC)
  Timecode (LTC, MTC)

Lecture 18: Yamaha CL Series  
 - Yamaha CL Series

Skills:                Identify the devices that comprise a Yamaha CL system. Choose the appropriate devices to create a basic Yamaha CL  system. Set-up and operate a basic Yamaha CL system 
Knowledge:   Yamaha CL Series – devices and specifications. System connection typologies. System workflow and set-up. Signal processing and routing. Show file management & advanced desk features.
PT1: Yamaha CL System overview  
     Yamaha – Company Introduction
  Yamaha QL, CL & PM Series
  CL5 tech specs
PT2: System set-up   
  Device connection
 Connecting topologies (Daisy chain, Redundant)
PT3: Desk overview   
 GUI layout
 Desk set-up
 Signal flow
 Channel and bus processing

PT4: Desk – advanced functions 
Scenes- show files
 Stereo and Multitrack recording and playback
 Remote control
 Offline software

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