Transcribing Audio Files to Text

16 replies
Is there free software available to do this? I know camtasia will but the price tag is too steep to justify.

I guess worst case scenario I could play back the audio into a microphone and use Windows speech recognition. Not sure how good that will work though.

#audio #files #text #transcribing
  • Profile picture of the author MelanieandMiles
    Your question is a bit confusing... Are you looking for a 100% automated solution that is free? Not sure if that exists.

    Dragon Naturally Speaking can do transcriptions from recordings, but it has an up front cost and you need to train the system, so there is setup energy required, too.

    If you are simply looking for a free transcription software, Express Scribe has a free level. This software doesn't transcribe the audio for you, but it allows you to slow down the audio to the point where you can simply listen to it and type it out without having to hit pause, rewind, play... pause rewind, play all the time.

    We have several hours of audio files transcribed every month (that is how we publish our Kindle books and a bunch of our web copy, we speak it out and have someone transcribe it, then do a final editing).

    We tried to automate the process and never came up with a solution that offered us a high enough quality end product... We found ourselves spending way too much time having to read through everything, making corrections that it ended up taking way too much time.

    We have connected with a lady here in the US through who does all of our transcriptions for $8.00 per hour and the quality of her work is amazing compared to any of our attempts to 'automate' the process. So worth the money in our case.

    Best of luck to you.
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  • Profile picture of the author vtotheyouknow
    It's so cheap to have somebody transcribe it by hand that it's really the best solution IMHO.

    You can find a lot of Filipino folks on oDesk with excellent English who work super cheap and do a great job. I can give you the contact info for my gal if you'd like. :-)

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  • Profile picture of the author Sarevok
    The best method to accomplish this is

    You can find this service for dirt cheap.

    Save yourself the headache.

    Life's too short.

    Just my $.02
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  • Profile picture of the author Social App Zone
    This thread made me think. I had noticed YouTube had transcribed their videos to text so there must be an API for this.

    Three hours later, mucking around with file conversions and limitations I got it working.
    Here is the source code I used:

    PLus side it did a damn good translation of the sample I used. Downside is that it seems to only like about 5 seconds of audio. So it is possible I could build something that would break audio into 12 parts per minute and feed it to Google. This might not be excessive for personal use but not something you could really offer as a service as the Google Hammer would probably block your site.

    and then there is as mentioned Fiverr $5 for 15 minutes..mmmmmm
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  • Profile picture of the author zachriah
    Hello PaulintheSticks,

    When you search in Google you will get a list of software that is powered by market professionals and help you in transcribing . These software are Express Scribe,InqScribe and lot more. But I experienced that these software doesn't provide accurate results. Due to which you have to switch toward professional transcriber. IF you get an issue while using these software then you can hire professional interview transcriber ( like Portiva)for ease of work with quality.
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  • Profile picture of the author W Wattles Fan
    Yep Fiverr all the way. A great lady in the Phillipines I use all the time.
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    • Profile picture of the author Chrisb720
      I use for getting transcripts of audio. They do a good job and it is very cheap for the quality you get.

      Hope that helps

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  • Profile picture of the author James Izek
    you can use emdat software for transcription, but the best results you can achieve is through manual transcription doing humans i.e. quality controller transcriptionists.
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  • Profile picture of the author Kalambur
    Visit odesk to find a freelancer, because nowadays it is impossible to transform audio to text with 100% quality. Enable youtube subtitles and take a look how it does that.
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  • Profile picture of the author cherbeat
    I know this may sound a little out of sorts but you have a Voice Recognition software by Microsoft on your computer. I recently found this out myself. I actually use Dragon Speak Easy and Outsource to folks on Fiverr and they did a pretty good job.

    I will say that the Voice Recognition software that is on my laptop did a much better job then all. So even if you are looking to get your videos transcribed start using that Voice Recognition Software. Just click your windows Icon and click "Windows Speech Recognition" and you will be amazed it was even there.

    I know I was. Good Luck

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  • Profile picture of the author Entrecon
    One key to the quality of the output is the original input. If you don't enunciate well the quality of the output is going to decrease. I agree with several folks here that Fiverr is probably your best option, but you may have to try a couple times to find someone that is good.

    Visit My website

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  • Profile picture of the author iscribed
    Or you can head over to Great quality transcriptions and as an introductory offer we're charging just $0.79 per audio minute!
    Signature - Audio and Video Transcriptions at just $0.79 / audio minute
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  • Profile picture of the author Glynn Kosky
    cool for this
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  • I don't thing there is a free solution but the cheapest I think is Dragon, you can of course speak live or you can feel a recording file. You can look up directions on their site how to use a dictation file and feed it into the program. Keep in mind it's not going to be as good as a human.

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  • Profile picture of the author TinkBD
    If anyone decides to go the Dragon route, I don't think that Dragon Home has that feature, but I know for a fact that Dragon Premium does. That's how I transcribe my webinars. ;-)
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