Get ready to level up!

Skip the music production basics, and go straight to aspects that will level up your production.

Creative Music Production: Arm yourself with a series of tools you can use to get inspired and start finishing tracks right now. Learn how to create emotive chord progressions and hooks with ease; build intricate drum patterns, nuanced with character that set a solid foundation for your tracks.

Sound Design & Synthesis: Unlock full control of your sound, and understand how synthesis really works. Learn to reverse engineer sounds, create complex patches and develop your trademark style. Step away from the presets and get ground-breaking results.

Mixdown Fundamentals and Advanced Mixdown: Approach your projects with new confidence. Break bad habits and replacing it with a tried and tested system. You’ll achieve effective, balanced mixes for your tracks, and allow you to mixdown others’ music too should you look to diversify your income streams.

Course FAQ

If your question is not answered below, contact us.

  • Are there entry requirements for this course?

    No. This course is hands-on, and aimed at improving your skill-set as a music producer. There are no formal academic requirements for this course.

    At the end of your training, once you have completed all the course quizzes you will receive a certificate of completion.

  • Will I learn specific genres on this course?

    Lessons will generally focus around the more “popular” electronic genres such as techno, house, drum and bass, and the majority of sub-genres within these areas.

    More in-depth questions about genres outside of this can be brought up during your weekly 1-2-1 sessions with your tutor. Feel free to ask away!

  • What are the lessons like?

    Lessons are where the main content of your training is delivered to your class. Lessons are:

    - Taught live by your course tutor, twice a week. Each lesson is 2.5hrs long - you will receive 20hrs of lessons per module (so 80 hours in total for this course).

    - Delivered to your class online as a closed group.

    - Taught at fixed times each week. Lesson times will differ depending on the start date of the course, and may also differ between modules.

    - Lessons are recorded and uploaded to your learning portal for you to re-watch as much as you need, so you do not need to worry if you cannot watch the lessons live.

    - You will not need a webcam for your lessons. You can however type questions in a chat forum during your lesson. For a short period at the end of each lesson, your tutor will review these questions and aim to answer the most relevant questions relating to the lesson topics.

  • What are the 1-2-1s like?

    1-2-1s are quality time to cover anything you need answers for, in order to help you progress. 1-2-1s are:

    - Taught live by a tutor (not necessarily your lesson tutor).

    - Taught as 4 x 30 minute slots per module (16 x 30 minute slots in total for this course - 1 weekly). When you enrol an administrator will be in touch to arrange what weekly timeslot will suit you and the tutor.

    - You will need to use a mic or your computer's in-built mic for your 1-2-1s. You will not need a webcam for your 1-2-1s, although it is recommended so that you can interact better with the tutor. 1-2-1s are taught using Zoom, which allows you to record the 1-2-1s directly to your computer, should you wish to watch these back in your own time.

  • What happens when I enrol?

    We look forward to welcoming you as a SEM student! Once you enrol, join the community online and give us a shout on FacebookInstagram or Twitter, by tagging us and using the hashtag #SEMONLINE to tell us what course you’ve enrolled for. Please add info@semmanchester.com to your email address book so that you receive the admin emails for getting you setup, and keep an eye on your inbox as this is the main way we will liaise with you throughout your training. 

    Once enrolled, you will be taken to your course player, which contains all the getting started information to ensure you’re all ready for online training. You will be required to fill out a survey to book on for your 4 course modules (Creative Music Production, Sound Design & Synthesis, Mixdown Fundamentals and Advanced Mixdown). Your course content will unlock as your course progresses.

    If you have any questions about enrolling, please book a call or email us.

  • What do I need to study this course?

    You will need:
    - A computer capable of running Ableton Live* (see system requirements here).
    - A pair of ideally flat-response headphones, or speakers.
    - An internet connection to allow you to follow the lessons online.
    - Music production software*
    - 3rd party plugins (see ‘What plugins do I need to study this course?’)

    *This course is delivered on Ableton Live 10 Suite, but it is fine if you want to use an alternative DAW that you are more comfortable with such as FL Studio, Logic, etc. Should you wish to follow along using Ableton Live, you can download a full free trial of Ableton Live 10 Suite here.

    Recommended but not essential
    - A MIDI keyboard
    - A second computer screen would be ideal so you can follow along on Ableton Live whilst watching your lesson.
    - We always advise backing your music up on a second source other as well as the computer hard-drive, for example, a good sized USB (256gB+), external hard-drive, or cloud based system.

    Email us if you need any advice on getting setup for training.

  • What plugins do I need to study this course?


    The below plugins are recommended to get the most from your training, but are not needed until the modules they are taught on.

    The Sound Design and Synthesis module uses 3rd party plugins such as Serum, Massive X, Diva and FM8 to practice with. Out of this plugin list, the only plugin for this course that we would strongly advise purchasing is Serum by Xfer Records, as it is one of the most versatile synthesisers in the industry and has a lot of features to make learning synthesis easy. Serum can be purchased for $189 outright or via rent-to-own for $9.99 a month on Splice.

    The Mixdown Fundamentals module heavily uses the 3rd party plugins included in the FabFilter Mastering Bundle which is £379, or with a 50% student discount, £189.50. You can provide your course confirmation to Fabfilter to claim the student discount. Before you buy - you can download a free evaluation copy of the FabFilter Total Bundle, which includes all FabFilter plugins. This lasts 30 days; when the 30 days are over you can extend it here. Please note the extension is most likely a limited feature due to COVID-19 so this link may be deactivated.

    The other plugin that will be used on this module is Valhalla Room. This is $50 for a one-off purchase.

    The Advanced Mixdown module also extensively uses 3rd party plugins included in the Slate Digital Everything Bundle. The Slate Digital Everything bundle can be rented for $24.99/month with no ongoing monthly commitment, or can be purchased through SEM for under £100 for the year - speak with us about this.