Case study

Audio Engineering graduate joins research team at world-leading company

Iustin Sandu has achieved his dream – becoming part of the research and development team at one of the world-leading audio system manufacturers, d&b audiotechnik in Germany.

Completing our MSc Audio Engineering degree meant Iustin gained the skills and knowledge he needed to initially be offered a role as a Software Developer. He has since become a Scientific Computing Specialist at the same company.

“This is definitely one of the greatest achievements, for me, so far," he says. "When I started the course, I had had very little contact with the world of scientific research in audio technologies and engineering. The course introduced me to this world and the exciting results that come out when you put theory and practice together.”

From music to audio engineering

Iustin initially studied a music degree and worked as an event technician alongside his studies. After finding himself more interested in audio applications, he chose to study our MSc Audio Engineering. “The course seemed like a great opportunity to get a deeper understanding of the scientific basis for what I had been seeing in my practical experience,” he says.

So why Derby?

“One of the reasons I picked Derby was because the curriculum seemed to cover a really wide range of subject in current audio-related research. This appealed to me because it allowed me to get in contact with the entire spectrum of different research fields in audio engineering, and then make an informed decision on where exactly I would like to go for a career.”

Iustin Sandu working at a sound desk
Iustin mixing a live concert at the ICC in Birmingham

Hands-on experience

During his studies, Iustin got plenty of use out of industry-standard equipment such as our hemi-anechoic chamber, Kemar head-and-torso simulator, dodecahedron loudspeaker and NTi Analyzer.

“The facilities gave us hands-on experience with how such tools are used for measurements and research in the industry. The surround room was also very useful to demonstrate and test spatial audio algorithms and practical projects.”

Iustin Sandu using the University's Kemar head-and-torso simulator
Various equipment inside the hemi-anechoic chamber

Learning from the experts

Iustin says his lecturers were ‘approachable, friendly and supportive’, and he values the efforts of his tutors in helping him to get to where he is today.

“The second (and no less important) reason for choosing to study at Derby was how approachable and prompt Dr Adam Hill was when I contacted him with various questions before starting my application,” Iustin explains.                               

“Dr Hill and Dr Bruce Wiggins are leading academics in their areas and very good lecturers, but also approachable and supportive people. The knowledge they bring with them is very inspiring. It is really exciting to be able to exchange ideas and discuss research topics with people that have so much to offer.”

Making an impact

Iustin Sandu working at a concert
Iustin at the ICC in Birmingham mixing a live concert

The most important aspects of the course for Iustin were the strong connections between scientific research and immediate practical applications. He was able to develop practical skills such as algorithm scripting and acoustic modelling which helped him to be more confident for his final project.

So what are his future plans?

“I am really happy to be working in research and development in the audio industry, so my current plans are to continue this work and bring my contribution to advances in this field of research."