Recording Guidance

A good clear recording results in accurate and fast transcription.  Less transcription time = less cost.

  • Use a recording device that supports one or more external microphones as built-in microphones tend to be of poor quality with limitations over recording levels
  • It is important to place the microphone(s) near the participant(s).
  • Ensure the speed control is set to fast (if there is an option).  Recording at slow speed will introduce hiss and impact recording quality.
  • Make a test recording to ensure that microphones are placed adequately and recording levels are sufficient
  • Ensure any ‘voice activation’ feature is switched off
  • Ask each participant to introduce themselves clearly
  • Remind the participants to speak clearly into the microphone
  • Moderate the interview / meeting by permitting only one person to speak at a time
Try to avoid
  • Recording at slow speed
  • Using micro, mini or standard cassettes for anything other than personal dictation
  • Recording in a noisy environment, including but not limited to:
    • Recording your interview in a public place, i.e. a restaurant, cafe, open park
    • Rustling paper near the microphone(s)
    • Using glasses, cups, saucers, plates, utensils near the microphone as it creates background noise that cannot be filtered out
    • Placing the microphone near air conditioning units, overhead projectors, laptops, mobile phones, open windows due to traffic noise, as it creates background noise that cannot be filtered out

It should be noted that the human ear filters out extraneous noise however the microphone will record EVERYTHING, including all unwanted noise.