THE BASICS OF VOICE DICTATION
No matter the context is, there’s one reason people use voice dictation: they want a recording of the important things being said. It might be for a meeting or an interview. Perhaps you’re a doctor or lawyer who wants to review what happened during an appointment with a patient or client. Creating an audio recording is the best way to document important events. The question becomes, what do you need to know to ensure successful voice dictation?
Fortunately, it’s very easy to make an audio recording for transcription. There are a few simple guidelines to follow for a recording that enables transcriptionists to quickly turn speech to text.
FROM SPEECH TO TEXT: WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT AUDIO FILES
You might not need to invest in any fancy or expensive tools to record the proceedings of an interview or meeting. You may be able to use your mobile device to produce an audio file. There are several apps available (free and paid) for Android and Apple devices that record speech. You can even use your PC or Mac laptop or desktop – all you need is free software and a microphone.
If you’d rather use a digital recorder, there’s a wide variety of them on the market, and you can find one for under $150. Digital recorders are straightforward – you press a button, and they begin recording immediately. You can upload the audio file to your computer to an online transcription service.
Now that you know what you need to produce an audio file, what are some steps you can take to ensure that the quality of the recording is as high as possible for someone else to transcribe audio? You make audio transcription easier when you’re recording indoors in a quiet place. While the most ideal space for recording audio is a soundproof room, that’s not a realistic option for most. Select a spot with carpets or wooden floors and thick curtains to muffle outside noise.
The transcriptionist’s job is far simpler when there’s only one person speaking on the recording. However, that isn’t practical if you want interview transcripts or a transcript of a meeting with multiple attendees. At the beginning of the meeting or interview, it’s good practice to remind everyone that one person should speak at a time in order to produce the highest quality transcript. And before someone speaks, he or she should identify him or herself – the result will be a higher quality transcript. Speaking slowly and clearly is another tip.
Microphone placement matters. If there will be more than one person speaking, the microphone should be an equal distance between the people who will do the majority of the speaking. Once you’ve found the right microphone location, don’t move it!
How do you know if you’ve put the microphone in the optimal place? Do a test run. Record yourself or the participants and play it back. If the recording sounds good, then you know the microphone is in the proper location.
TURN TO MY OTHER OFFICE TO TRANSCRIBE AUDIO
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