Excited about your new recording device? Most of us are thrilled by anything that comes in boxes and has an instruction manual. But soon the excitement gives way to frustration when you find out that your dictations don’t sound the way you want them to. I had a friend who sat down to transcribe her voice over for a documentary project, and was stunned to realize that she couldn’t decipher clearly most of the words she’d spoken.
And there are people who’ve been told by transcribers that the audio recording clearly falls in the C category, the industry term used for poorly recorded audio. We don’t blame you if you want to hurl your recording device out of the window. There is a better option, follow a few basic rules and see the world of difference it brings to your recording.
Pause, punctuate and please don’t swallow words
Most people rush through recordings and end up with a recording that sounds like a steady stream of indecipherable words. Talk like you are writing, punctuate your sentences. Speak clearly and if you’ve swallowed a word erase it from the recorder and listen once carefully to be doubly sure you are deleting the right word. Most recorders come with simple deleting options, and it is usually an orange or red dot, on your recorder.
Organize the information you are planning to dictate
Do a mental check-list and plan ahead on the way you are going to assemble your information. It will save you the trouble of hitting pause every few seconds to search for notes or that number you’d scribbled down. If you feel you are veering off the point halt recording and get back on track, it is a much better option than an incoherent recording.
Do not dictate in noisy places or while driving
Most recorders are sleek and advertise that you can record on-the- go. But if you don’t want your recording, to be a cacophony of truck horns, swearing drivers and other noises and voices that you never intended to record, dictate at a relatively quieter location like your cabin.
Imagine what your transcript would look like
I recently ran into a physician who follows this queer but effective method. Everytime you record imagine a transcript of the recording. Visualize those blanks, stutters, unwanted words that make no difference to the information you are dictating, and yes of-course your dictation being labeled as C category. Take these precautionary steps and ensure you longer spend hours on end haggling and arguing with audio transcription services firms.