Sound (4 blocks)

Course MD613 Christian M. Fischer, Julien Schmid

Lecture Group 1 & 2 | Sun. 8.30h - 10.00h | MD Studio C3 101 - Check this out!!
Practical Group 1 | Wed. 12.30h - 14.00h | MacLab
Practical Group 2 | Sun. 10.30h - 12.00h | MacLab

Music and silence combine strongly because music is done with silence, and silence is full of music. Marcel Marceau

This course will give an introduction overview on state of the art tools for sound design. A lecture gives an overview on basic acoustics, recording, sound synthesis and its purposes and use in modern media.

The practical part will focus on software used for sound synthesis, mixing, editing and mastering. There will be assignments throughout the semester to apply theoretical approaches.

As an outcome, students will be able to work with sounds and samples in the digital domain.

Keywords: Sound Design, Sound Synthesis, Sound Editing, Mixing

References and Textbooks


Week Lecture Assignments Infos
February 19 - 23 Introduction - Sound
February 26 - 01 Basics of Sound Signals Audacity intro. Audio Signal Processing Basics
04 - 08
Silent Movies & Sound Design Spear intro., Audacity assignment History of Sound in Movies
11 - 15
Sound Recording & Microphones Spear, Sound documentary intro. check Sound app. download down below page! Shure Microphone Techniques (PDF)
18 - 22
Sampling & Sequencing, Digital Representations of Sound & Sound Synthesis Fruity Loop & Garage Band intro., Spear assignment Sampling Tutorial and Sequencer Tutorials, Sound Synthesis Tutorial
25 - 29
Listening Comprehension
01 - 05
Midterm Exams
08 - 12
No lecture - Western Easter Holiday
15 - 19
No lecture - Eastern Easter Holiday
22 - 26
Loudspeakers & Spatialization, Hardware & Interfaces
Lecture on Thu. 26. 14.30h
Physics of Loudspeakers and Various Systems, All about Audio Interfaces
29 - 03
Activity Week - subscription deadline: April 26. The outcome will be be graded as an assignment. The assignments have to be handed in until May 06. in C3-124. Mind the following: in case of vacancies in the sound WSs, handed in assignments of other WSs have to face a significant deduction. All students have to subscribe to a sound Work Shop. When the sound WSs vacancies are filled, students are free to attend other WSs.
06 - 10
Acoustic Communication & Soundscape AC in GoogleBooks and Soundscape Info
13 - 17
Sound & Art email your reports until May 27th!
20 - 24
Listening Comprehension email your reports until May 27th!
Final email your reports until May 27th!

Weights: 25% Report, 25% Assignments, 50% Final


Within the lecture, students have to do a report/presentation in groups of 2 (25% of the overall grade). The topics and vital information about the report/presentation are listed here. Topics will be assigned in the first meeting on Feb 18.

Do check the Wiki on a REGULAR basis as the order of lectures & reports might change, so be ready!

In the practical course, students will have assignments on a bi-weekly basis in groups of 2 or individually (25% of the overall grade). Assignments will be listed 2 weeks in advance.

The Final project will be discussed by the end of the first part of the semester (50% of the overall grade). ---

Sound app. download links:


For both OSX and PC platform --> link <--

Fruity Loop & Wine Bottler for Mac

This a PC app. BUT it runs on Mac by downloading another small app. named WineBottler --> link <--.

It will enable you to then install the .exe installer for Fruity loop which you will find here --> link <--