How Much Do Audio Engineers Get Paid Per Hour In 2023?

Audio Engineer Work With Music For New Song Stock Image Image of
Audio Engineer Work With Music For New Song Stock Image Image of from

The Importance of Audio Engineers

Audio engineers play a crucial role in the music and entertainment industry. They are responsible for recording, editing, mixing, and mastering audio tracks, ensuring that the final product sounds professional and appealing to the audience. Their expertise is not limited to music production alone; they also work in film, television, and live events, making their skills invaluable in various creative endeavors.

Factors Affecting Audio Engineer Pay

Several factors determine the pay rate for audio engineers. One of the primary considerations is experience. Seasoned audio engineers with a proven track record and an extensive portfolio tend to command higher rates than those who are just starting in the industry. Additionally, the type of project and the client’s budget may also influence an audio engineer’s pay rate.

Hourly Rates for Audio Engineers

In 2023, the average hourly rate for audio engineers can range from $30 to $100 per hour. However, it’s important to note that this figure can vary significantly depending on the factors mentioned earlier. For example, audio engineers working on major music productions or blockbuster films may earn higher rates due to the scale and complexity of the project.

Entry-Level Audio Engineers

Entry-level audio engineers usually earn around $30 to $50 per hour. These individuals are typically recent graduates or those with limited professional experience. They may work on smaller projects, assist senior audio engineers, or handle basic sound editing tasks. As they gain more experience and build their reputation, they can expect their pay rate to increase.

Experienced Audio Engineers

Experienced audio engineers with a solid portfolio and several years of industry experience can earn between $50 to $100 per hour. These professionals are highly skilled and have a deep understanding of various audio equipment, software, and techniques. They can handle complex projects independently and deliver high-quality results. Their expertise and reputation allow them to command higher pay rates.

Freelance vs. Full-Time Employment

Audio engineers have the option to work as freelancers or pursue full-time employment. Freelancers often have more flexibility in setting their rates and choosing the projects they work on. However, they are responsible for finding clients and managing their own business affairs. Full-time audio engineers, on the other hand, may have a more stable income but may have less control over the projects they work on.


Audio engineers are vital in ensuring that sound quality meets the highest standards in various forms of media. Their pay rates in 2023 can range from $30 to $100 per hour, depending on factors such as experience, project complexity, and client budget. Entry-level audio engineers can expect to earn around $30 to $50 per hour, while experienced professionals may earn between $50 to $100 per hour. Whether working as freelancers or in full-time employment, audio engineers contribute significantly to the success of music, film, television, and live events.