Suggestions for best mic for Live Transcribe

Jane B.

Well-Known Member
I have been using Live Transcribe from soon after it came out. I do like it and use it fairly regularly. It is great for my Pastor's voice (he uses a mic connected to thee regular sound system) but it does not want to pickup things said by members of the congregation (they do not have a mic). There is also a problem with how much it misses in a restaurant when several of us go out to eat together. This is even after adding a corded mic to my phone. I am wondering if any of you have suggestions of a mic to plug into my phone that would really help a lot in these situations?
 

Barbaro

Well-Known Member
It is not simple to pick up everything in the noise background. My husband has a signal processing background and says that it will not likely to pick up everything in the open space if you use a small mic at short range.

Look up lavelier or lapel mics filmmakers use to make a show. You have to use a giant mic. It can be a eyesore, but if you don't mind using a big mic.
 

zephren

Well-Known Member
Look at Jabra products. I don't know how well it will work in a restaurant though. At my work when no live interpreter is available I have a laptop with VRI service and use a jabra mic. Mine is wired but they have a wireless Bluetooth one that would connect to your phone.
 

Barbaro

Well-Known Member
Why are you so reluctant to say what you think is a very good one?

All mics have frequency responses. It may help to know how much your corded mic "hears" sounds in open space. If you don't want to tell me, then I won't be able to help you solve the problem. My husband may know some good mics that may work the best in open space. Good luck with your problem. Have a good morning.
 

Jane B.

Well-Known Member
Look at Jabra products. I don't know how well it will work in a restaurant though. At my work when no live interpreter is available I have a laptop with VRI service and use a jabra mic. Mine is wired but they have a wireless Bluetooth one that would connect to your phone.

Thank you. I will as I had no brand knowledge before I got what I did after a simple search.
 

SneakerNet

Retired
Premium Member
Having Transcribe or other means of assessable conversation apps (like Ava etc...), it's very hard to control all the background noise. As you know that background noise is louder than the person talk. Meaning that you have to hold your wired mic real close to the mouth. The bluetooth Pod do not bode well. That what I and my family member have to do when we all have family meeting in Mexico because of the noise in the restaurant. I'm talking about everyone use the phone with the app installed and each person use their own wired mic. This help a lot but the only draw back is network speed and we tried to avoid using resort Wifi due to high chance of hacking. We all been using cellular network. The only time we use resort Wifi if we are using VPN connections. Anyway...the point is that transmission causing skipped or delay or garbage texts... If we all sit in a quiet place, it will come out beautiful.... The place where you sit need to move away from the wall. If you all sit in the corner which created a "megaphone" because noise travel along the wall and bounced off the corner. Get the idea? really there's no best solution or answer to get the best quality mic. The "best" solution is to have individual install the app and have them hold the wired mic close the to mouth and make sure you all sit in the middle of the restaurant or bar.
 

Jane B.

Well-Known Member
Having Transcribe or other means of assessable conversation apps (like Ava etc...), it's very hard to control all the background noise. As you know that background noise is louder than the person talk. Meaning that you have to hold your wired mic real close to the mouth. The bluetooth Pod do not bode well. That what I and my family member have to do when we all have family meeting in Mexico because of the noise in the restaurant. I'm talking about everyone use the phone with the app installed and each person use their own wired mic. This help a lot but the only draw back is network speed and we tried to avoid using resort Wifi due to high chance of hacking. We all been using cellular network. The only time we use resort Wifi if we are using VPN connections. Anyway...the point is that transmission causing skipped or delay or garbage texts... If we all sit in a quiet place, it will come out beautiful.... The place where you sit need to move away from the wall. If you all sit in the corner which created a "megaphone" because noise travel along the wall and bounced off the corner. Get the idea? really there's no best solution or answer to get the best quality mic. The "best" solution is to have individual install the app and have them hold the wired mic close the to mouth and make sure you all sit in the middle of the restaurant or bar.

Thank you. I think I mentioned this somewhere where Ava came up but this is usually just a bunch of older gals and I can think of at least one that I don't think has a cell phone let alone being both willing and able to install an app.

I have a feeling that the problem in church with people out the the congregation speaking without a mic that is connected to the regular sound system it is a matter of distance and thus not loud enough. There is virtually no background noise.
 

SneakerNet

Retired
Premium Member
As far as Church goes, yes I'm aware of no background noise... The solution is to have wireless mic that connect to the sound system and have a person pass the mic around. That should help both you and the older people who could not hear from the people speaks in the congregation. The only worry part... dropping the mic....
 

femme Fatale

Official AD Nutcracker
Alright, apart from learning ASL? Like Barbaro hss mentioned, there are a few technical aspects to successfully use any mic to transcribe the conversation. As it stands alone, even a more sensitive mic may not be the answer since it may pick up on sounds possibly giving you jumbled results. It also comes down to the software being used, which I doubt any app exists that has the calacity to process and tell the difference between your congregatikns voice frequency and other sounds within the same frequency unless you haul in a music studio to truly remaster the sound the mic picks up. Point is, what you’re asking about does not exist to transcribe something using a mobile phone alone apart from what Sneakernet suggested. So what I did was during my pre-CI days I had someone using a word processor type a live shorthand on a laptop when I needed the meeting’s minutes. I just viewed the content in a larger font off the screen and have a good idea of what is said. Sometimes an idea looks promising on paper but in practice, it’s not really simple. Nothing beats a human’s hearing to decipher and transcribe a conversation for you.
 
Last edited:

Jane B.

Well-Known Member
Alright, a little direct idea for you. Like Barbaro hss mentioned, there are a few technical aspects to successfully use any mic to transcribe the conversation. As it stands alone, even a more sensitive mic may not be the answer since it may pick up on sounds possibly giving you jumbled results. It also comes down to the software being used, which I doubt any app exists that has the calacity to process and tell the difference between your congregatikns voice frequency and other sounds within the same frequency unless you haul in a music studio to truly remaster the sound the mic picks up. Point is, what you’re asking about does not exist to transcribe something using a mobile phone alone apart from what Sneakernet suggested. So what I did was during my pre-CI days I had someone using a word processor type a live shorthand on a laptop when I needed the meeting’s minutes. I just viewed the content in a larger font off the screen and have a good idea of what is said. Sometimes an idea looks promising on paper but in practice, it’s not really simple. Nothing beats a human’s hearing to decipher and transcribe a conversation for you.

I am just trying to find the latest that may help with what Live Transcribe will transcribe the best. Things keep changing and this is a check on the latest.

The restaurant is the most frustrating as one of the gals that has the most to say is someone that I have known since the 1970's and have always had trouble lip reading (or as they are now saying speech reading). I doubt that anyone wants to pickup a mic to talk directly into between bites while eating.

At church I do get notes afterwards from either or both of two gals. The first one to start doing it gives more complete information but they are not here as often since they had a grandson born and living about 80 miles or so away. She & her husband spend at least one day over there most weekends.

I agree with you about how helpful real time in person notes are. At one time we had an interim minister that is real good on a keyboard (regardless of the device) and her husband came up with the idea of her doing that during committee meetings that we both attended. It was particularly helpful because the gal I have always had trouble understanding was the chairperson.

I think we all need a grin and last Sunday Live Transcribe had Jesus born in a bar rather than a barn! The context when it occurred was such that it still made sense. The description I have heard of the inn the barn was attached to makes me wonder if that was not that far off!

 
Dual microphone handhelds work the best with transription apps.
Some phones and tablets have built-in noise-cancelling dual microphones that work really well.

I use the iPhone/iPad equivalent of Live Transcribe called "Otter.ai" (it's also available for Android and Laptop too). It works great on my iPads (I do have to use big font size in Settings / Assistive). I have a new iPad Mini 5 LTE which has 2 microphones built into it and it seems to work 5x better than most smartphones. It's superior to my old iPad Mini 4, which was 1 mic and less accurate. This allows the iPad to automatically do noise cancellation of background noises, so it works much better. It's not perfect, but much better than it used to. Find a phone or tablet that has a noise-cancelling dual-mic built in.

When used 2-device, it works great with my FaceTime calls too.

One device does the captioning, and the other device does the video call. iPad+Phone, or Laptop+Phone, or Phone+Phone or iPad+Laptop. Otter gives you 600 minutes free per month -- but it's also a bargain at only $10 per month for 6000 minutes for your equivalent of a pocket stenocaptioner that can caption everything.

Otter also allows a 2nd phone to be used as a cordless microphone for captions
1. Start Otter recording on one phone. This becomes the microphone.
2. Give that phone to the speaker to put in their shirt pocket or on podium.
3. Start a 2nd phone (or laptop or iPad). This becomes the caption screen device.
4. You can use the 2nd device Otter to read the captions on the 1st phone (that the speaker is using as a cordless mike).
- Make sure both phones are connected to either WiFi or LTE, and logged into same Otter account.
- The first phone will also display captions but you don't need it, just turn off the screen (Otter will keep transcribing for 2nd phone).
- Best to not let the speaker read their own captions! It only confuses them and slows them down when they pause.
 
Last edited:
Top