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Navigating the Audioverse: Yamaha product specialists talk the new webinar series

Yamaha has launched a series of webinars aimed at pro audio professionals, hosted by Yamaha's own product specialists Andy Cooper and Karl Christmas, who gave PSNEurope some insight into the new initiative

Yamaha has introduced a series of webinars that form a part of its new Audioversity training initiative, aimed at professional audio engineers, systems integrators and venue technicians. This new series will cover a wide range of pro-level topics aimed at the live production, hospitality, house of worship, corporate installation and broadcast markets. The first session covered system design using CL and QL series digital mixing consoles.

Hosted by Yamaha product specialists and recognised pro audio industry veterans Andy Cooper and Karl Christmas, the new webinar series kicked off on May 1 and will continue monthly. Each webinar will take place twice daily in order to be available to as many participants as possible globally. Participants will need to register in advance for each webinar. 

Here, we catch up with Christmas and Cooper to find out more about the initiative and what makes it unique… 

Tell us more about the Audioversity training initiative… 

Yamaha’s Audioversity initiative is aimed at formalising and giving global structure to all our training activities that have, up until now, been handled on a regional basis. By pooling and sharing training material and projects, Yamaha can now offer far more structured and better training content to its customers, no matter where they are located in the world. 

How will this initiative help audio professionals progress? 

By the very nature of professional audio work, due to schedules and the ever-changing technology that engineers use, there is a constant need for personal self-development in order to stay ahead of the game. Our training aims to support this by offering a broad set of training opportunities that will cover many topics either face to face, via webinars or by having access to video and written training material. 

Who is it aimed at? 

Engineers and technicians in the live touring, theatre, house of worship industries and installers and system integrators in the fixed commercial installation market. However, there is nothing to say that those working in other areas, such as education, broadcast and corporate AV, will not benefit from the varied content. 

What sort of topics will you cover? 

Topics will be varied. They will include standard ‘how to use and operate’ various equipment types, along with advanced system and networking topics, through to best practice in programming for commercial installations, as well as integration with third-party products. The first two webinars will focus on Yamaha’s CL and QL series consoles, and how to get started working with simple Dante networks. 

What was the motivation behind this initiative? 

We understand that users and investors need to constantly improve their skill set and maximise their return on investment. The Audioversity framework will allow us to directly ensure that our customers get the most out of Yamaha equipment as well as audio systems in general. 

What makes Yamaha’s teaching approach unique? 

Yamaha is lucky enough to have a very large, close-knit global team of very experienced technical staff. Cumulatively, they have been presenting to and training end users for decades, amassing a great deal of knowledge on how to clearly explain the subject matter. Also, because the global training team is so interactive, they are able to share insights amongst each other as well as understand the subjects from the perspective of all parts of the world. 

What do you make of today’s audio education? 

Audio education varies from region to region. Some are good and some not so. We find that our classes are particularly in demand in places where the traditional type of education is lacking. We provide a number of tiers of training classes, so we can tailor them to the needs and expectations of the attendees. It’s always better to learn to walk before learning to run. Our main concern would be that some ‘training’ events can turn out to be more of a sales pitch. We try to make our training as non-partisan as possible, given that we are a manufacturer. We are always happy to discuss using Yamaha gear together with a range of third-party equipment, taking a system-wide approach. 

What can audio professionals do to stay up to date with the industry? 

As we know, audio professionals’ lives are often nomadic, making attendance to training difficult. We would recommend that people take every opportunity to absorb training from manufacturers and professional bodies such as AVIXA or The Association of Sound Designers. If they cannot make it to a specific event, then webinars could be an ideal solution. And if you miss the live broadcast, catch up online later!