What Does a Broadcast Engineer Do?
Broadcast engineers must juggle a lot of priorities — and that’s part of what makes the job so exciting. Also called broadcast technicians or broadcast and sound engineering technicians, they work primarily in television and radio. They are trained to set up, maintain and operate the specialized equipment that controls the transmission and quality of the images, audio and video we see on television and hear on the radio. They provide technical support for films, concerts and music recordings, ensuring the quality production and transmission of audio and video. They often work with the design, installation and maintenance of computer networks and work with computer programs to edit audio and video recordings.
The job often involves night and weekend work. It may require working in inclement weather.
- Manage and maintain audio equipment to regulate volume level and quality of sound during radio and television broadcasts
- Manage local and wide area computer networks to distribute data and programs
- Operate and maintain the transmitters used to broadcast programs
- Convert video and audio records to digital formats
- Record speech, music and other sounds on recording equipment or computers, sometimes using complex software
- Comply with FCC (Federal Communications Commission) regulations and state, federal and local laws
- Set up and take down equipment for recorded events and live performances
Broadcast technicians and engineers need a high school diploma and a two-year associate degree in broadcast technology or a related field. Course work should include math, science, production management and video editing. In addition to classroom instruction, aspiring technicians should also get hands-on experience in the industry.
- Are good at multi-tasking
- Work well under pressure
- Are an excellent communicator
- Excel at troubleshooting
- Possess strong manual dexterity and hand-eye coordination
- Like working with audio and video equipment