How to Convert Audio Files to Text

Useful information often comes in audio format. This format is convenient to listen to on the go, but issues might arise when you want to revise something you’ve heard in written format. You can do this by converting the audio file into a text document. Read on to find out how.

How to Convert Audio Files to Text

In this article, we will reveal how to convert audio files into text documents using different software. We will provide a detailed guide for transforming information into the desired format online, on Mac, Windows, and your phone. Additionally, we’ve covered FAQ that others have asked on the same topic.

How to Convert Audio Files to Text Online

There are plenty of tools online for those who don’t want to install any additional software. We will share a couple of them with you. However, free online tools aren’t likely to give you professional results. Follow the guide below to convert audio files to text without downloading apps on your computer.

Using Bear File Converter:

  1. Visit the Bear File Converter website.
  2. Upload an MP3 file from your device or paste a file URL.
  3. Select a recognition engine.
  4. After the upload is finished, click “Convert”.
  5. Wait for the conversion to end and save the result as a PDF or TXT file.

Using 360 Converter:

  1. Go to the 360 Converter website.
  2. Upload an MP3 file from your device or Cloud Storage, or paste a file URL.
  3. Select the language of the audio file.
  4. Set the start and end times of the file that you want to transcribe.
  5. Tick the box beside “I agree to the Terms & Conditions” and click “Start Conversion”.
  6. Wait for the conversion to end and save the result as a PDF or TXT file.

Using Sonix:

  1. Go to the Sonix website and sign up for a free 30-minute trial using an email address or Google.
  2. Upload an MP3 file from your device or from Zoom, Dropbox, Google Drive, or YouTube.
  3. Select the file language and click “Start transcribing now”.
  4. Add details by shifting toggle buttons, then press “Continue transcribing”.
  5. The conversion will take some time. The transcribed file will be emailed to you.
  6. Download the file in a PDF or TXT format.

How to Convert Audio Files to Text in Google Docs

Google Docs doesn’t officially have a transcribing function. If you aren’t looking for a high-quality transcription, you can try to use the voice typing feature to convert an audio file into text by following the steps below:

  1. Open Google Docs and select the “Tools” menu.
  2. Click “Voice typing”.
  3. Play the audio file. Make sure no background noises can be heard.
  4. Google Docs will type the dictated text into a new document.

How to Convert Audio Files to Text on Mac

Mac owners can cheer – audio files can be transcribed using pre-installed software. Follow the step-by-step guide to convert audio files to text on your Mac:

  1. Open the System Preferences menu.
  2. Press Dictation & Speech, a microphone icon.
  3. Select the “On” option beside “Dictation”.
  4. Optionally, tick “Use Enhanced Dictation” to transcribe the file with real-time feedback.
  5. Select the file language and make sure a shortcut key is selected.
  6. The changes are saved automatically. Close the window.
  7. Open a new document in any text editor.
  8. Press the selected shortcut key to turn on the dictation feature.
  9. Play the audio file you wish to transcribe. Make sure no background noise is interfering with the audio.
  10. Click “Done” to see the results and save the file in the desired format.

How to Convert Audio Files to Text on Windows

Similar to Mac, Windows has a feature called “Speech Recognition”. To transcribe text on any Windows version later than Windows Vista, do the following:

  1. In the “Start” menu, click “Control Panel”.
  2. Select the “Ease of Access” settings, then “Speech Recognition”.
  3. Press “Set Up Microphone” and follow the on-screen instructions, then click “Finish”.
  4. Complete a tutorial by selecting “Take Speech Tutorial” and follow the on-screen instructions.
  5. Click “Train your computer to better understand you” and follow the instructions.
  6. Open a new file in any text editor.
  7. Say “Start listening” out loud, then say “Dictation”.
  8. Play the audio file you want to transcribe beside your computer’s microphone.
  9. Say “Stop listening” out loud when you are done.
  10. Save the file in the desired format.

How to Convert Audio Files to Text on Your iPhone

To convert audio files to text on your phone, you will need to download one of the transcribing apps that can be found in the AppStore. Follow the guide below:

Using the Dictate app:

  1. Download the Dictate app from AppStore.
  2. Try the free trial to make sure you like the app.
  3. Press and hold the “Dictate” button to record audio.
  4. Release the button when you have finished recording. The app will show the transcribed text.
  5. Save the text in the desired format or share it to another app.

Using Transcribe – Speech to Text:

  1. Install the Transcribe app on your phone from the AppStore.
  2. Choose the free trial to make sure you like the app.
  3. Open the app and start talking to record audio, or select an audio file from your device.
  4. If you are recording audio, the app will transcribe it instantly when you stop talking. If you have selected a file from your device, the app will show transcribed text after the upload.
  5. Save the result in the desired format or share it to another app or device.

Using Just Press Record:

  1. Find the Just Press Record app in the AppStore and download it.
  2. Press and hold the red record button in the center, or click “Browse” to upload a file from your device.
  3. Release the record button or click “Upload”. The app will transcribe the audio file instantly.
  4. Optionally, edit the transcribed text.
  5. Save the file in the desired format or share it to a different app.

FAQ

Some users may want to create a custom transcribing tool or to record speech more accurately. Read on to find out how to convert audio files to text on a more professional level.

How Do I Transcribe Audio Files Using Python?

Tech-savvy readers may want to create a speech-to-text conversion tool on Python. This can be done in various ways, but the easiest is to copy the program text below to Python and save it as “transcribe.py”. Then, upload an audio file into the program to convert it to text.

import speech_recognition as sr

from os import path

from pydub import AudioSegment

convert mp3 file to wav

sound = AudioSegment.from_mp3("transcript.mp3")

sound.export("transcript.wav", format="wav")

transcribe audio file

AUDIO_FILE = "transcript.wav"

use the audio file as the audio source

r = sr.Recognizer()

with sr.AudioFile(AUDIO_FILE) as source:

audio = r.record(source) # read the entire audio file

print("Transcription: " + r.recognize_google(audio)

How Do I Make the Transcription More Accurate?

To transcribe audio files accurately, make sure to follow two simple tips. Firstly, get rid of any background noises. Find a quiet space before you start playing an audio file into your device’s microphone.

Secondly, use a real-time conversion option if possible. This will allow you to edit the text straight away. You may miss inaccurately converted phrases if you edit the whole text afterward.

Some apps allow you to train the speech converter to better recognize specific accents – don’t negotiate this feature. In the case you need to get the best results, you may hire a professional. A person can often hear nuances that a program can’t detect.

Store Information in the Most Convenient Way

Audio file conversion is a useful feature that helps to easier review and edit your voice notes, audiobooks, and podcasts. Hopefully, this article has helped you to convert audio files to text, no matter your device.

Have you tried different transcribing apps? Do you know any additional tips on making an audio recording more clear? Share your experiences in the comments section below.

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