As a sound engineer adjusting frequencies is an important part of what your job. Mixing desks especially will normally have many controls for cutting & boosting the different frequencies of various instruments/voices. This is known as “equalisation” more normally abbreviated to “EQ.” Here is a picture of an eq section on a mixing desk & we will study this further in the chapter dealing with mixing desks.


You will probably already be able to identify many pieces of equipment that a theatre sound engineer uses, so let us look at those now & examine the strengths & weaknesses of different playback devices. Very often as a live theatre sound engineer you will have to play back pre-recorded sound effects (SFX) & music using machines similar to those identified below.


Reproduces the digital information stored on a compact disc. The digital information is retrieved off the compact disc & converted into an electrical signal. This signal then leaves the CD player via its left & right outputs before travelling onto the next piece of equipment in the signal path.


The controls on a CD player are normally fairly straightforward. Typically you have these controls below (with the exception of record unless it is a CD recorder.) It is worth learning the symbols for each of these controls as often that is all that will be displayed on a machine. The icons are common to all playback/recording devices & most audio software too. These icons are known as the "transport section" as historically they were used to move tape back & forth on reel to reel recorders.