Researching what is “the best transcription software” can be a little overwhelming. There are a lot of different answers. A lot of companies promote a “free” software, but free in a very limited capacity. Also speech to text software comes up in search results, like Dragon Naturally Speaking, but that isn’t a transcription software. That’s a dictation software. We covered the differences between dictation and transcription software in this article.
As an experienced transcriber I’ve compiled a short list of the best transcription & audio dictation software available today.
- Superior Sound Quality
- You can customize your time code & there is an automated time stamps feature.
- Software can convert audio or video types to other formats automatically.
- You can type in an MS Word document as you playback your audio or video file.
- Terrific customer service. You will get a response from a human within 24 hours.
- Affordable – $0.93 per month or $22.32 for a 24 month license.
- Windows only.
- Free version is limited.
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- Free to try & very affordable to buy at $34.99.
- Intuitive and easy to use. Great for beginners and experienced transcribers.
- Imports almost any audio or video file.
- Available on Mac or PC.
- Difficult to customize your time stamps.
- Doesn’t have as many features as other programs.
Express Scribe Transcription Software Bundles
Currently you can buy Express Scribe bundled with a USB foot pedal.
This bundles contains both a foot pedal and USB Spectra Headset.
- Works with almost all audio & video formats.
- Includes a USB foot pedal.
- You can customize your time code setting.
- You can type in MS Word as you playback your audio or video file.
- Free software upgrades.
- Free lifetime technical support.
- Windows Only
This is an upgraded version of the Start-Stop Universal Transcription System.
The features, advantage, and disadvantages are the same as the standard software.
- Includes a Free Spectra PC Headset as well as the USB Foot Pedal.
- Plays virtually every audio and video format on any Windows PC.
- Works with all audio & video formats.
- Available on Mac or PC.
- Can set a custom time code.
- Price is $99 per license.
- You are required to type into their text editor. I’d prefer typing directly in MS Word.
- InqScribe requires the user to export and convert the transcript before you can edit in MS Word.
Best Dictation Software
- Best audio to text dictation software on the market.
- Fully customizable to suit your needs.
- The speech to text technology works very well.
- Works in any application where you would normally type.
- You can use this software to assist you in typing.
- Not a transcription software. It is a dictation software.
- Only accurate with one speaker at a time.
- Newer versions seem to be PC only without a Mac option.
Best Transcription Headsets & Accessories
The WordSlinger Deluxe is specifically designed for audio transcription & spoken word. This focus on spoken word is achieved by the frequency response that’s built into the headset. Also, these headphones have built-in audio and volume controls. It comes with a 10 foot cord & plugs directly into a USB slot. It’s a great headset and retails for $59.95.
A foot pedal for me is a big time saver. The reason you want a foot pedal is you can rewind, fast forward, and play the video with your foot. This means you don’t have to use your hands, the mouse, to control the video.
I do not want to stop typing and grab my mouse and hit the rewind button, or even use a keyboard shortcut, as I don’t want to get my hands out of position while typing. Using a mouse to control the video will slow you down significantly.
I use a USB foot pedal by Infinity, it works with every transcription software I use and every computer, both Mac and PC, I have. The Infinity USB foot pedal responsive, versatile, and well-priced. I’ve been using these for years and have never had any issues.
I hope this article was helpful. Comment below if you have a favorite audio transcription software and please leave any questions or comments you might have. If you have audio or video files that need to be transcribed please feel to request a quote or visit our transcription page. Happy transcribing!