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Digital Audio Recorders versus Tape Recorders: Why You Should Go Digital!

For many years, analogue recording systems, particularly tape recorders, were the only options available to anybody wishing to commission a transcript of their interview, focus group, conference or dictation. In recent times, however, digital recorders have quickly overtaken tape recorders as the predominant professional audio recording device. There are numerous advantages to clients in switching to a digital recorder for all transcription needs – go digital!

Go Digital! Crash through that analogue wall.

Go Digital! Digital files are durable.

One great benefit of digitally recorded audio files is their durability. While cassettes can physically break and often suffer from twisted or mangled tape, digital files can be stored electronically for decades with no deterioration or quality loss. The audio quality of digital files does not decline over time or when copies are made. While tapes are usually limited to 60 or 90 minutes in duration, digital files can be of any length. It is also far easier to edit digital files and to add in precise time stamps for parts which are inaudible or unclear. This helps the client in that it becomes far easier to guarantee accuracy in the transcript.

Go Digital! Safe and secure digital file exchange

Go Digital! Easy, safe and secure file exchange.

One of the biggest improvements provided by digital recording is the ease with which files can be exchanged between the client and the transcriptionist. Digital files can be sent via a secure uploading service over the Internet. This is extremely useful for clients who are busy or travel frequently, because there is no longer a need to return to the office or to attempt to find a post office to send audio files. All that is required is a suitable computer or other digital device with internet capabilities and access, such as a smart phone or iPad.

Similarly, the transcriptionist is able to simply email or upload completed transcripts of digital files to the client, before deleting the original files. These innovations save time and remove postage costs, whilst simultaneously eliminating the risk of precious files being lost or damaged in the post.


Go Digital! Better control over recording environment.

Go Digital! More control over the recording environment.

On the other hand, just as with analogue recordings, it is still necessary to ensure as far as possible that the conditions of the recording are favourable, in order to maximise the audio quality. Provided that background noise is kept to a minimum and a functioning microphone is used, digital recording can provide superb results. The increase in quality helps to ensure less expensive, faster and more complete transcripts with fewer inaudible sections.

Go Digital! Using a digital recorder improves Return on Investment.

It is clear that the benefits of upgrading to a digital recorder are plentiful. Using a digital recorder is one of the best ways to ensure that the time and effort you have invested into your project brings maximum reward at minimal cost.
Pacific Transcription retails a range of Olympus and Philips recorders to suit your requirements and budget. Please visit the Pacific Transcription’s online shop to find out more.
Posted by Catherine Byrne

About Catherine Byrne

Catherine's work with Pacific Transcription spans many areas, including writing and design, business development, training, and of course, keeping abreast of emerging trends and new products which enhance transcription and dictation experiences for clients.
This entry was posted in Better Audio, Dictation, Focus Groups, Interviews, Mobile Dictating, Transcription and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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