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Studio Monitor

Primary Tasks

    Secondary Tasks

      The Studio Monitor is responsible for the technical aspects of recording audio books.

      This volunteer operates the audio equipment used to record and edit voice-over narrations and is involved with the set-up and adjustment of the microphone and electronic components such as preamps, compressors, the audio mixing board, and digital recording software. The studio monitor will be a "coach" for the narrator and will monitor the narrator's vocal techniques and reading accuracy.

      Required Skills

      • Excellent verbal communications and social skills
      • Outgoing personality
      • Good listening skills
      • Good hearing
      • Patience
      • Understanding
      • Flexibility
      • Good coaching skills
      • Team player
      • Extreme attention to detail
      • Good manual dexterity
      • Aptitude for working with computers
      • Aptitude for electrical, electronic, and mechanical systems and equipment, especially audio-related

      Beneficial Background or Related Experience

      • Computer and audio/electronic experience
      • Work that required extreme patience and interpersonal diplomacy
      • Work that required close attention to detail

      Monitoring Requirements

      • Correcting narration mistakes, sometimes as many as several hundred in a single recording session
      • Coaxing the best out of the narrator
      • Monitoring techniques such as rhythm, tone, volume, breathing, voice character, mic usage, reduction of mouth noises
      • An attentive mind and ear, even if the material being read is boring
      • An open mind regarding the variety of books selected for recording (at times subject matter may be offensive to personal tastes and beliefs)

      Monitoring is very demanding and can be tedious and repetitive.

      Training May Be Required

      If a person has a technical aptitude, but does not have audio-related experience, the technical responsibilities can be taught. The other listed skills are sometimes hard to find in a person who is gifted with technical abilities.

      Recording Sessions

      • 2 hours, with a break in the middle
      • Studio open 8 AM - 5 PM, Monday through Friday 
      • Flexible scheduling
      • Partnering with a particular narrator works well

      For more information, contact:

      Tim West
      515-281-1360
      800-362-2587 (toll-free)
      Tim.West@blind.state.ia.us