Transcription Enemy Number One – Low Quality Audio Files

June 9, 2014 Samantha

When choosing a transcription company to transcribe your audio or video files chances are you are looking for a final transcript that is on time, accurate and well presented. However, the Achilles heel of transcription is the badly recorded audio or video file.

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We don’t like badly recorded files!

Bad Audio Files = Lower Quality Transcripts

Although I quite like the idea of people picturing me sitting in some kind of futuristic computer hub (think The Matrix meets Mission Impossible), I unfortunately live in present day times and am forced to use only the technology available, meaning so far, there is very little that can be done to improve low quality audio files. Alas, I cannot put badly recorded files through some kind of computer program that cleans them up to perfection. In fact many of the clean up procedures take a long while to configure and in some cases can actually worsen the audio quality! The quality of your recordings will have a direct impact on the quality of your final transcript, no matter what transcription company you use or how many times you have your transcript proofread.

Top Ten Reasons Not to Send Bad Quality Audio Files

Bad Quality Audio is More Expensive to Transcribe

Bad Quality Audio and video files are more expensive to transcribe because the typist has to spend much longer periods of time listening and re-listening to the audio in order to pick up inaudible and unclear parts of the dialogue. The worse the recording, the higher the cost.

Bad Quality Audio produces Lower Quality Transcripts

Despite all the extra time spent on low quality audio and video files, even the best typist can only transcribe what is audible and depending on the file, this can be a few words to whole sentences and paragraphs. Even with a second proofreader, badly recorded audio is often unsalvageable.

Bad Quality Audio Is Takes Longer to Transcribe

Bad quality audio can take a week or more to transcribe because of having to recheck the audio. Even with this extra time spent, the final transcript is unlikely to be as good as a transcript that has been produced from clearly recorded audio or video files.

Bad Quality Audio Is Harder To Research

Technical or medical files that have been badly recorded pose even more of a problem, as they make research almost impossible. After all, how can you research something when you can’t hear the dialogue properly?

Bad Quality Audio Is more Expensive to Proofread

Bad quality audio and video files are more expensive to proofread, as they will have to be listened to many times alongside the audio, researched (if possible) and also more time will be spent trying to clean up the audio. Again, the worse the audio, the higher the cost.

Unfortunately, badly recorded audio and video files cost more for an inferior final product. This is why it is so important to submit high quality audio and video files, for the best results. We recommend that you record your audio and video files as clearly as possible in a quiet area, using high quality recording equipment. If your files are medical or technical in nature, please let us know, as this will help us select a typist with the correct skills, experience and knowledge to transcribe your files. Finally, it is always a good idea to provide as much information as possible when sending your files; this includes names of people mentioned, company names, technical terms, new drugs mentioned, abbreviations and useful websites.

If you are interested in using our transcription services or would like more information about how to record a high quality audio or video file, contact us today and we can help.

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Samantha

Transcriptionist and Virtual Assistant.

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