Reflections on Being an Audio Intern

Throughout this semester, I’ve not only learned through my academics but also through this internship at the Shapiro Design Lab. Alongside three other audio interns, I learned to use some interesting tools in Adobe Audition, record podcasts through Zencastr, and assist in teaching eager podcast and music makers to use the software and recording techniques enabled by the Winberg Media Production Room.

Since I had previously not explored used Audition, even just discovering the heal tool in the spectrogram view was exciting. Using this, one can reduce and even eliminate annoying short noises, for example, something hitting the microphone, a loud inflection in a voice (like powerful P or sneaky S sounds), and some cases when the gain is too high in a singular moment. In Audition one can also select an area in the spectrogram so manually modify the gain on.

With the Zencastr browser recorder, one can use the Winberg room to create a clean sounding podcast with the other members speaking not even physically present. The user in the Winberg room simply has to create a link to send to other members and have them join using that. We have stumbled into some problems where audio on the other members’ ends was shaky and in some cases unusable, but it is certainly a good tool if the other members have a clean connection and a relatively small or non-reverberant room to themselves.

Through consultations I had managed to teach an introductory level of my knowledge in Logic that I have accumulated through my usual schoolwork here as a Performing Arts Technology student at the University of Michigan. I’ve taught people who want to advance their editing skills for music how to use different plugins in Logic and shown them examples of instrumental lines that could be immensely changed through different parameters of reverb, delay, compression, distortion, and EQ plugins. I have also had consultations regarding analysis of spectrograms for research projects.

Although this semester has been very productive within the lab, I would have liked to have more end-goal projects regarding sound to work on, whether it was creating a musical track or assisting with other pre-existing projects that may have a sound component to them.