Average Salary: $46,870
Expected Lifetime Earnings: $1,957,000
You're one of the guys who makes good money even when you aren't one of those at the top of your game. Remember—those in the industry understand how crucial it is to have clear and professionally mixed sound, and as long as you know what you’re doing, you will be of value to a producer. On nonunion projects, you can expect to make about $350 a day. For union projects, you can make several hundred dollars an hour more. Get work as a sound mixer for a major studio project, and you can be raking in thousands each day.
Of course, you don't necessarily work all year. You almost have to make that much daily, because you're going to go straight from having a leprechaun vomiting gold coins into your lap to having to scrounge underneath couch cushions for spare nickels. To avoid that, it's best to put aside quite a bit of that money you're making when you're really rolling in it, so that you have something in your checking account for the lean months. They'll be really lean months if you didn't save any money to buy food.