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 that I’ve tried personally.
- 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.
- Very Affordable. Less than $1 a month (0.93 cents/month for a 2-year-subscription)
- Multiple subscription plans available.
- Discount Code Available! Just type flawless at checkout.
- Windows only.
- Free version is limited.
- You do need internet access for all of the features to work correctly.
Update August July 2021 – Coupon Code
Due to the positive response from this blog article, FTW has kindly offered our readers a discount code.
- 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.
- Includes a Free Spectra PC Headset.
- Plays virtually every audio and video format on any Windows PC.
- Lifetime License – No Need to Renew or Pay for Upgrades
- Windows Only
- Expensive at $179.99
- 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!
There are many AI assistants & other methods to transcribe out there today in 2021, but bear in mind your data is not necessarily in safe hands. When transcribing anything secure it is best to do it locally on your own computer.