For the unfamiliar, SynAudCon is the leading audio education program for industry professionals, offering an absolutely fantastic opportunity that teaches things you didn’t realize, affirms things you did, and presents the chance to get up-close and personal with audio technology and its applications.
By the way, “SynAudCon” stands for Synergetic Audio Concepts, and it is just that.
I recently had the great fortune to attend a Sound System Tech in-person course in Kansas City, near my hometown. Here’s what I experienced.
Painting The Picture
You walk into a venue and you’re greeted with the warm, charming smile of Brenda, half of the formidable duo that creates and curates the SynAudCon experience. She shakes your hand and helps in finding your name tag. Every attendee gets a station, a printed copy of the curriculum, and a couple surprises to brighten your day further. I sit down and greet a few familiar faces.
At the front of the room is a setup rivaling most church systems. Pat Brown, a guru of audio education, is posted amidst the gear, preparing to unload a truck-full of knowledge on the 40 of us in attendance.
A 24-cone array, personally built by Pat by way of Don Keele and Dayton Audio, is flown in the region, joined with two smaller fill loudspeakers and a subwoofer nearby. Measurement microphones, amplifiers, digital processors and magnets galore litter the landscape.
It looks like an incredibly well-built mobile system catered to a “T” for someone in Pat’s position. I grab a cup of coffee, return to my station, and double-click my mechanical pencil. Time to learn.
Without exaggeration, the training manual for the curriculum is nearly worth any price of admission alone. Following the course, I actually put my copy away for safe-keeping and referencing later. The bound copies of the manual, especially printed for each attendee, is a colorful wonderland of vital information.
One of my favorite teaching approaches is to use analogies, metaphors, and drawing connections between ideas I’m attempting to teach and things that people already know well. Pat does just that with his manual. Let me be clear that this is no mere collection of PowerPoint slides printed in black-and-white; it’s a full-color, image-rich, honest-to-goodness book.