Programme: Acoustics and Music Technology - MSc

Year: 2012

Abesh Thakur graduated from Edinburgh College of Art (ECA) in 2012 with an MSc in Acoustics and Music Technology.

Abesh met Sound Design student, Varun Nair, through the Digital Media Studio Project at ECA and, together, they set up Two Big Ears in 2013. The company creates audio technology that “helps you see through your ears”.

Tell us about yourself

I’m from Kolkata, India, and came to Edinburgh in 2011 to pursue a Master’s degree in Acoustics and Music Technology. Previously, I was working in a Fortune 500 company back in India as a programmer for a couple of years, after which I decided to take a break and continue my studies.

I did my undergraduate course in Electronics and Communication Engineering in India, so my MSc was my first ever stint studying or working abroad. I have been a proud resident of Edinburgh ever since.

Tell us about your creative practice?

I’m co-founder, and CEO, of Two Big Ears Ltd. We make audio technology which is both efficient and designer-friendly.

3Dception, which is our 3D audio spatialisation tool for games and Virtual Reality/Augmented Reality application developers, has gained prominence with the rise of Virtual Reality over the past year and is being used in some of the top content made by indie developers, as well as industry leaders.

This is an extremely new yet exciting and challenging market with people all over the world creating mind-boggling technology and content, and to interact and work with these people is a massive source of inspiration. The biggest challenge is to try and understand how a solution meets the market needs and to deliver it. To wake up every day to solve people’s problems in an effective and creative way and to be recognised for it, is what keeps us going.

Abesh Thakur discusses working on a project for Björk

Why did I choose to study at ECA? Amazing course content, a city which redefines beauty and a world-class university with expert faculty; that’s a no-brainer!

Abesh Thakur, 2012 Acoustics and Music Technology - MSc

What did you like about ECA?

The College has been incredibly helpful, not just during the course, but as in our case, even right after. So much so, that the first people we’ve hired have also graduated from the Acoustic and Music Technology programme!

The course was very well structured and paced and what I’m doing right now is a direct extension of what I learned.

The cherry on top is obviously that you get to be in Edinburgh. I don’t think any other city is as charming, crazy and student-friendly at the same time.

What have been your biggest achievements since you graduated?

Starting Two Big Ears and going strong for two years. That’s a very special feeling.

What advice would you give someone wanting to study, and have a career in, your area of expertise?

Since it’s somewhat of a niche degree, I would advise future students to have some sort of an idea about what they want to do after graduation. Whether it’s working in an audio signal processing based company, or to go into research or like myself, start something of your own, it would definitely help having a rough idea of where you want to go with this newly armed knowledge.

Having a good background in music and technology is quite helpful and there’s a lot happening in the industry as well, so it is quite important to be abreast of all the opportunities as well as technological advances in his or her area of interest, while doing the course itself.

Are you interested in studying Acoustics and Music Technology - MSc at Edinburgh College of Art?