Prior to the digital age audio transcription was completed using tape cassettes. Media producers would record their interviews, focus groups, and speeches on a tape and send them to a transcriber. The process would sometimes involve an additional step of exporting footage from a camera or videotape onto an audio cassette.
Nowadays we have the luxury of digital files. Digital audio & video files can easily be sent to a transcriber over an online file sharing service such as Dropbox or Hightail.
Audio specialists & video producers can record a separate digital audio track and send it to a transcriber. Alternatively if you have large video files, you can take the original video file and make a copy of the file without the video track, keeping only the audio. The reason for keeping only the audio is the video track takes up a large amount of hard drive space, and sending the file over the internet is much easier & faster when the file only has audio on it. Also transcribing a high-res video file can slow down a computer that doesn’t have a powerful video driver, if a computer has trouble playing back a video then that will slow down the transcription process.
Transcription has never been easier with the advent of digital audio & video files. Here are the steps to making the transcription process a smooth & efficient one.
- Collect your audio or video tracks that need to be transcribed in a folder.
- Compress the file(s) by converting it to an MP3 file, if the transcriber needs to see the video track while typing then use a video file format like MP4.
- Upload the audio or video file to a file sharing service like Dropbox or Hightail or Google Drive.
- Notify the transcriber that the files are online ready to be downloaded for transcription.
Here are the most common file types used in audio transcription: