Jul 13, 2017 The software marketplace is being loaded with copious transcription software of both free and paid versions. Singling out suitable software from the software basket may be an arduous task. I hereby suggest some of the best transcription chums especially for the transcriptionists and virtual assistants who need to cut back on their transcription. Hi, There are a couple of services and tools that I have reviewed that are available to help you with automatic audio transcription. Here are some of the tools and services. YouTube I know you mentioned audio transcription but it is possible.
I listen to podcasts. I watch videos. I watch podcasts of different languages. But more than anything I read and write. I practice languages. That’s just how I roll. And sometimes, my ramblings bring me as far as understanding English meaning of some specific kikuyu translation texts.
Frequently I want to save an audio snippet or video clip for future reference. Sure I could save the source media file, if I had unlimited disk space. But what I usually do is keep a link to the original source and text synopsis of the snippet. That both saves on storage and makes future searches for that particular item simpler.
If you’re like me, you really want the original text more than a synopsis. It take s a bit of extra effort, but I have a nice solution that uses only a Mac and open source software. Read below for instructions on converting an MP3 audio file to a text document.
The Basics of Configuring Your Mac to Transcribe .MP3 Audio
Here’s what you need:
- The original media (.mp3 file, for example)
- Soundflower. Soundflower is an application that creates a virtual audio channel and directs audio input and output to physical or virtual devices.
- Audacity. Audacity is a free application for recording and editing sounds.
- TextEdit.app. TextEdit is the default text editor/word processor that is included in Mac OS X.
Follow the instructions on the developer websites to get all of the software installed and working on your system. Once you have the software installed, the next step is to configure your Mac to use Soundflower for dictation.
- Open System Preferences and click on “Dictation & Speech”
- Select the Dictation tab
- Select “Soundflower (2ch)” as the dictation input source
- Click Dictation to “On”
- Tick the “Use Enhanced Dictation” box
Your Mac is ready for dictation. When dictation is turned on in TextEdit (or a another word processing app), your Mac will transcribe sound from the Soundflower input source.
Getting Your Audio and Text Files Ready
Next, you need to queue up the audio file in Audacity and direct output to Soundflower. For those who are new to Audacity, this will be the trickiest step. But relax, you don’t need to learn much about Audacity beyond deciding what section of sound to play and how to select the audio output from the default speakers to Soundflower.
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- Launch Audacity
- Import your audio file into audacity (File–> Import, or simply drag the file into the center of the Audacity screen.)
- Click the play button to give it a listen, then click stop once your confident you have the right sound clip/transcription area.
- Choose Audacity –> Preferences –> Devices. Under playback, choose “Soundflower (2ch)” to switch the output from the onboard speakers to Soundflower. Click “OK”
With Audacity and your sound file queued up, its time to turn your attention to TextEdit.
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- Launch TextEdit
- Create a “New Document”
- You may want to add some meta data to the document, such as the podcast name, episode #, publish date and URL, to go along with the key transcript.
- Position the cursor in the file where you want the transcript to appear.
And … Action!
It’s time to start audio playback and dictation transcription. Here both sequence and timing are important:
- In Audacity, move the scrubber start location 10-15 seconds before the key transcription area.
- Press “Play.” The scrubber and meters will start moving, though you won’t hear any sound. The audio signal is going to Soundflower instead of to the speakers.
- Put focus on Text edit and position the cursor where you want the transcription to begin.
- Select Edit –> Start Dictation. (or use the hot key combination, Fn Fn). A microphone icon with a “Done” button will appear to the left of your document.
- Text will start appearing in the document. It will likely lag by about 3-5 seconds.
- After approximately 30 seconds press the “done” button. Transcription will continue until complete.
This is the fun part: watch as transcription happens in real time right in the document window. Look Ma, no hands!
And now you have the original text (and most likely a few errors) as text to save. In the future you can easily search and retrieve the information.
An Excellent Alternative: Google Docs Voice Typing
While the solution above works great for offline work, one alternative with a lot of promise is Google Docs. The Voice Typing feature work much like the dictation service in Mac OS. It has the crowdsourcing advantages and privacy disadvantages of other Google products. If you’re OK with that, I found Voice Typing to do an very good job with accuracy and it can go longer that Mac OS dictation.
To use Google Voice Typing, follow all of the steps above with Soundflower, Dictation preferences and configuring Audacity. Instead of using TextEdit, you’ll want to start the Chrome browser and create a Google Doc. Once you are in document, Select Tools –> Voice typing
The user interface and process of starting and stopping transcription is the same as with TextEdit.
Dictation and Transcription Limitations
This process sets you well on you way to the goal of a high fidelity audio transcription. But it will be short of perfect. Here’s what you can do to go from good to perfect:
- Understand that Mac OS dictation transcription works for a maximum of 30 seconds at a time. If you need longer, you may want to use an alternate technology such as Dragon.
- Audio playback needs to start before dictation/transcription begins in TextEdit. TextEdit needs to be in focus for dictation to work. If you set the Audacity scrubber a few seconds ahead of target snippet, you’ll be fine.
- Transcription cannot intuit punctuation. You’ll need to add that after the fact.
- If you have multiple speakers or a noisy background, you may need to complete one additional step of creating a pristine audio file to work from. This can be done by listening to the sound through headphones and speaking the text into an audio recorder. Use the recording of your voice to drive the transcription.
Automatic transcription and also transcription with playback features are what make these transcription tools attractive. Here are 10 Transcription Software for Windows.
1.Listen N WriteListen N Write is a straightforward and easy to use tool for transcription. It doesn't have too many sophisticated options but a simplistic interface to convert the speech to text. You can skip or rewind the file to ease transcription task.
Listen N Write supports MP3 and WAV files and generates the necessary size for the output. It operates on Windows 10, Windows 7 (32 bit), Windows 7 (64 bit), Windows 8, Windows Vista (32 bit), Windows Server, Windows Vista (64 bit), Windows XP.
The tool is free with no installation or downloading charges. Once you launch the program, the file appears in a media player file. The corresponding text can be edited in the text editor that pops up. It does not, however, do automatic transcription.
By default, Listen N Write plays for 5 seconds and pauses for you to type. You can adjust the speed and playback options if you find the speed to be too fast. Fast forward and rewind can be adjusted using hotkeys. Using a Bookmark feature, critical sections in the file can be marked for a quick recall later.
2. EurescribeEureScribe makes the transcription faster for audio and video files. One of its striking features is that it breaks down larger media files into smaller segments. This can help you memorize quickly, and you can also use many keyboard shortcuts to have a hassle free typing experience. The output will be stored in RTF file or as subtitles video files if you are making movie subtitles.
However, to use other formats such as PDF, an explicit conversion will have to be done later on. EureScribe works with all the main formats like WAV, MP3, WMA, AVI, MPEG and DVD video. There are two editions for this tool designed to fit different users. Personal edition can be helpful for individual needs. Workgroup for organizations or companies that are working on subtitling a project or film.
3. MAXQDAMAXQDA is a powerful transcription and data analysis tool. You have various options to analyze interview, audio/video files, images, and online surveys. Unstructured data and test theories can be organized to generate creative graphics and reports. The tool can be used to adapt the audio speed quickly and adjust the sound. Also, by the use of foot pedals, transcription can be accelerated.
MAXQDA first creates an empty document automatically and connects it with the media file. And the Transcription mode control panel will appear where you can customize how MAXQDA should behave during the transcription. You can change the playing speed to speed up or slow down the clip. Using a rewind interval option, you can decide for how many seconds the player should jump back to continue playing the media file after you have stopped playing it.
A rewind interval of 3 to 5 seconds is preferable. A time stamp can be set which automatically enters a time stamp into the transcript each time you click an Enter button. Time stamps can be used to connect text in the document and corresponding location in the media file. So using the time stamp, you can jump to any place you wish. Foot pedal and hotkeys can be used to speed up transcription.
4. Transcribe! - Seventh StringTranscribe! from Seventh String is useful for users who deal with music and audio files. It can be used to work with a particular part of music from a recording.
The music player of Transcribe! has many transcription specific features which are specially designed for speech to text conversion. Some of its features are that it is adaptable to changes in pitch and speed. It has storage and recall of named loops. With the support of foot pedals, transcription is further easier.
5. Enhilex Medical Transcription SoftwareEnhilex Medical Transcription Software is designed for easing out the medical transcription process. Medical terms and abbreviations can be easily managed using this tool. It can hold an unlimited number of lab names and abbreviations across various folders.
These entries can be copied from notepad and pasted into MS Word or any other file format. It has a well-structured database where search operations can be done fast. It has a one-month free trial, and if you like it, the full version can be purchased.
6. TranscribeTranscribe can efficiently convert speech to text even with background noise and multiple speakers. Using automatic transcription feature, it can speed up the transcription process with twice or thrice the normal rate. Using the control buttons such as the pause and rewind buttons, and also the hotkeys, transcription can be better controlled.
Speech to text conversion can be advanced with accurate. You can transcribe quickly with the media player playing the audio file and having the text file in the same window. It will save a lot of time spent on switching between text and audio file. It supports all the main file formats such as mp3, mp4, m4a, AMR, WMA and wav.
And there are many hot keys to function as shortcuts. Transcription at each keystroke will be auto saved. Undo key can be used to go back to the previous state so that you can rectify your errors and move forward. The output file can be exported as a .doc file to your device using Export icon.
Also, there is a dictation feature that can be used to convert spoken words directly into text using voice recognition. You can even repeat what you hear in the video in your voice so as to convert it into text. Dictation engine supports all the key European and Asian languages. Also, there are supporting features such as USB foot pedal and time stamps for exact transcriptions.
7. Transcriber ProTranscriber Pro is a convenient, fast and easy to use tool for professional translators. It opens the audio and text file in the same window for an easy transcription process. Some hotkeys can be completely customized, and time stamps and speaker are also tagging. Playback speed adjustment and unique HTML export options are some other unique features of Transcriber Pro.
Transcription Software Auto Rewind For Mac Download
The proofreading is less tiresome with navigation through media and the document and the assignment of unique tags. You can also split the transcription and finally merge them so that multiple users can work at the same time. Transcriber is compatible with Windows 8/8.1/10, Windows 7/Vista.
8. Transcription Helper
Transcription Software Auto Rewind For Mac 2017Transcription Helper is a handy tool for transcription. Playback can be controlled using hotkeys and foot pedal. There is a feature to generate time stamps automatically to navigate to specific points in the video. The transcript document can be exported into the text document which can be used in other programs.
This is an excellent tool to create subtitles, translating lyrics of songs. It supports all the key audio and video formats including WAV, MP3, WMA, AVI, MPEG and MOV files. With such remarkable features, Transcription Helper works well for lengthy audio and video clips.
9. Voice AgainVoice Again, using the slow down and speed up features can translate speech to text without changing the pitch or other parameters. The tool can be utilized for the documentation of interviews and dictations. Voice Again retains the vocal clarity of the clip even at variable speeds using its high-quality algorithms.
The rate can be changed to 10 times slower or up to six times faster. There are noise reduction features and audio, graphic display with zoom controls. Videos of WAV, MP3, OGG and WMA formats are supported. Also, Compact Disc Audio from your CD or DVD drive can be imported. You can also bookmark important parts of a recording using the annotation feature.