Thin microphone 0612

How to capture great audio

Better quality audio = more accurate transcript

Sonix users on recording audio ๐ŸŽค

Pete Combs, KOMO Radio

Pete Combs

KOMO Radio

Listen on Sonix

Pete Combs, KOMO Radio

William Smith

Daring creative

Listen on Sonix

A few tips for capturing great audio ๐ŸŽถ

Record indoors if at all possible

In windy or noisy outdoor environments, you simply want to record most of your audio track indoors or in-studio. If you must record on-location, background noise or wind can be avoided by using a "dead cat," "wind muff," or windshield which are fluffy microphone covers designed to minimize wind noise. It is nearly impossible to edit wind noise out of your audio track.

Set up a sound booth

The best place to record audio is in a small, carpeted room with wall treatments (pictures, curtains, etc) in order to avoid harsh sounds characterized by an echo. Closets full of hanging clothes are great as a make-shift sound booth.

Equipment matters

The best way to get clear and high quality audio is by using a standalone microphone instead of a built-in mic. Most built-in microphones are omnidirectional which means they will record unwanted sound from every direction.

Uni-directional microphones are the best. The quality from them is almost guaranteed to be better, and you can move the mic around to find the best spot to pick up sound. Microphones are a lot more sensitive than a lot of people think. Even aiming some microphones in different directions can drastically change the amount of sound you are picking up. Usually having a lavalier microphone clipped to a person's shirt will pick up the most direct and clear sound.

Lean in, get close

The closer the microphone is to the speaker, the better. You'll get better audio quality, less background noise, and better sound fidelity. Also, please enunciate your words as if you were speaking to an audience in a large auditorium.

Speak at a balanced and uniform level

Even with a good microphone, great sound isnโ€™t guaranteed. Microphones can be extremely sensitive to small level changes. While we might not think much of someone getting really loud and then really quiet while talking, that can usually be too much for a microphone to handle. Sudden loud sounds might cause distortion, while some very quiet sounds might not even be picked up.

Check your audio

Use headphones to immediately monitor or check your audio quality to ensure that background noise is not present. Our perception of sound often makes us unaware of background noise. Here's a simple example: Imagine being in a room with the air conditioner on. After a short amount of time, you won't notice it anymore. But all of a sudden, it will turn off. Now the room seems eerily quiet. Our brain and hearing adjusts to our environment pretty quickly, but they will notice sudden changes.

Unfortunately, microphones do not behave in the same way. A microphone will pick up all of the extra noise for the entire recording. When you listen to it again, it will be very obvious. This is why it is always important to check your audio (with headphones) before recording hours of content. You don't want to have to do it again!

Conclusion

Having high quality audio is crucial to having great transcriptions. Background noise, wind, muffled voices, and echos will easily result in a poor audio quality score. At Sonix, our automated transcription algorithms are analyzing your recordings. Thus, we rely heavily on you. Please ensure that your recordings are made in the best possible environment. The number of edits that you'll have to make will be much less.

Other Sonix Articles ๐Ÿ“ƒ

Tips on how to capture great audio

Hear from other Sonix users about how they record high quality audio

Why should you transcribe?

Five reasons you should be transcribing your audio and video files

History of speech recognition

How did we get to where we are today in speech recognition? Sonix explains

How to remove the metallic sound

The metallic, tin-like sound you hear in your audio is an unwelcome annoyance

Six best tips for transcriptionists

Helping transcriptionists work faster and be more accurate

AI, ML, and NLP

Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, and Natural Language Processing

Is voice the next major UI?

We think that it will change how we interact with technology

Word error rate

How do you judge accuracy in the realm of speech recognition?

A comparison of automation services

Independently reviewed and Sonix scores the highest among automated services

Start transcribing with Sonix ๐Ÿš€

Sonix transcribes, timestamps, and organizes your audio and video files so they are easy to search, edit, and share. Start your free trial todayโ€”all features included, no credit card required.

Try Sonix for free

Your first 30 minutes of transcription are free