FAQs

What is big brain audio? big brain audio is a small, agile, friendly, and competent training company. Our specialty: audio production techniques, with a focus on Native Instruments’ Komplete 10 and Maschine, and Ableton Live 9 and Ableton Push. For more about us, see the about page.

How much does a workshop cost? The workshop prices can be found on the workshops page.

Do you accept credit card payment? We can’t accept direct credit card payment at this time. However, you can make your payment either by bank transfer or via PayPal, which does accept credit cards. When you send us the sign-up form, we will send you the PayPal link for the workshop you are interested in.

Do I need to bring my own laptop? No, you don’t need to bring any equipment. Each participant will be provided with their own fully-equipped workstation. If you want to bring your own laptop, you are certainly welcome to. However, we don’t have the resources to give you any technical support if your system is not up-to-date or if the software is not properly installed.

What kind of equipment do you have? For every participant, we have a 21.5″ iMac, M-Audio Axiom 49 keyboard (four octaves, and a bunch of knobs, sliders, and pads…), Ableton Push and Native Instruments Maschine controllers, headphones, and all the software, libraries, and materials you’ll need for the workshop, including Native Instruments’ mega-bundle, Komplete 10 Ultimate. All computers are wirelessly networked together (along with the teacher’s computer) so that we can collaborate, share, and present our work in real time.

Can I take my work home with me after the workshop? Of course! After all, you created it! Obviously we can’t allow you to copy any of the stuff from the installed intruments or librairies, unless it is explicitly open source.

Where are the workshops held? Our workshops are all held in Berlin, at big brain audio’s own Room One in the Crellestrasse in Berlin, a traffic-calmed street lined with a variety of restaurants, bars, and cafés. For more information, see our “Finding Us” page.

Will there ever be big brain audio workshops in other cities? For now, all announced workshops will be held in Berlin, Germany. However, we are available for private or institutional workshops and seminars throughout Europe.

Who are big brain audio workshops for? big brain audio is for people who want to master their audio software tools, including people who DJ and produce music on their own or who would like to give themselves a big boost in their production capabilities. But the workshops are also for sound artists and people more broadly involved in digital content production.

How do I know if the course is the right level for me? You’ll see the level indicated in each course description on the workshops page. If you have a doubt, just drop us a line and ask!

Who are the teachers? The main teacher is Brian Smith, who designs most of the course plans and coordinates with the guest teachers. We are extremely honored to have Stephan Schmitt, the creator of Reaktor and founder of Native Instruments, as our first guest teacher. In addition, we are also proud to have Brian Clevinger — the brain behind Absynth — and Mads Lindgren, probably the world’s best Maschinist, on board as well. Our Kontakt Hands-On Sampling workshops are co-taught by Frank Elting, and the Komplete Synthesizer Sound Design workshop features a special workshop-in-a-workshop with Mike Daliot.

Do you offer workshops on anything other than Native Instruments tools? Yes! Our “production toolbox” includes Ableton Live and Ableton Push, which we feel works extremely well with NI’s Maschine and Komplete 10 bundle of instruments and effects. We also teach techniques involving other studio tools (software and hardware) and continue to expand our course offerings.

What language is used at the workshops? Most workshops are held in English because workshop participants generally come from many different countries. However, most of our teachers speak German either as their mother tongue, or very fluently. One-to-one courses are available in English, German, and French. The language for any given workshop is always indicated on it’s description page (see links on the workshops page).

Is big brain audio available for festivals, special events, or private teaching? Yes! big brain audio also organizes workshops for private companies, educational institutions, and special groups. Just drop us a line at info [at] this domain or send us a message with our contact form and we’ll get in touch as soon as we can!

Is big brain audio part of Native Instruments GmbH? Nope. big brain audio is an indepedently owned and operated enterprise. All workshops are organized and conducted entirely by big brain audio.