How to unwind an audio in Word

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Meetings, lectures, interviews: how many times have you had to transcribe the audio recording of one of these events into a text file? I agree, it is truly one of the most tedious and lengthy activities that exist, but sometimes it is necessary to complete them in order to carry on work or study projects.

Fortunately, there are several tools that can be of enormous assistance in carrying out this task and, in some cases, are even able to perform the task automatically and for free. How do you say? Do you absolutely want to know more? Perfect, you’ve come to the right place at the right time!

I created this tutorial specifically to show you how to transcribe an audio , taking advantage of the dedicated features of the most popular word processing software, or the dictation services implemented on the main operating systems, as well as some online resources. Of course, a lot will depend on the quality of the source audio file, but I’m sure that by following the suggestions I’m about to give you, you’ll be able to quickly and accurately transcribe your next work. Now, however, let’s get right to work. All I have to do is wish you a good reading and a good job!

How to unwind an audio in Word

logo word

Word is undoubtedly one of the best-known and most-used word-processing programs and is perfect for transcription activities. Below, therefore, we will find out how to unwind audio in Word through the program in question in combination with the dictation features integrated into the Windows and macOS operating systems.

I warn you, however, that you will have to use an external audio source to be placed next to the PC microphone: in fact, the dictation service drastically lowers the playback volume of the internal contents to facilitate acquisition from the microphone, so it is not possible to use any files audio present in the PC. Here are all the details.

With PC

Word dictation

As mentioned in the introduction, it is possible to take advantage of the version of the Office package word processor installed on your computer in combination with another native feature of the Windows and macOS operating systems, namely the dictation service. The solution is very simple to implement: first start Word, then press on the Empty document option, top left, or open an existing document on which you want to work.

Then press on an empty area of ​​the document to start composing the text and position the audio recording playback device near the computer, possibly on the side of the microphone to facilitate word recognition, also making sure that the volume is sufficient high enough to allow listening as clean and clear as possible.

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If you are using the Windows 10 operating system , press the key combination Win+H to activate the dictation service: you will notice that a bar will appear at the top with a microphone symbol which, during recording, will be highlighted by a blue box. The dictation service takes a few moments to initialize, so as soon as you see Listening , start playing the audio right away.

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If you have a Mac you will first need to activate the Dictation service by clicking on the Apple menu > System Preferences , then pressing on the Keyboard feature and, on the following screen, pressing on the last tab called Dictation . Then press the Yes option in the Dictation section and click on the Enable Dictation button .

From now on you can start the function by pressing the control key twice : the microphone symbol will appear inside the document if the window is extended to full screen, or to the side if it is reduced.

The automatic transcription will start immediately and the system will autonomously compile the new document with the recognized terms. When you want to stop recording, block the acquisition by always clicking on the microphone symbol at the top right (on Mac, instead, press the wording Finish ). When finished, remember to save the file, via the File > Save As menu .

Note: if you have a Microsoft 365 account , I strongly suggest you take advantage of the online version of Word which, among other things, allows you to upload an audio file and automatically perform the transcription activity: here you can find more information about it.

Da smartphone e tablet

unwind audio to word mobile

If you want to understand how to unwind an audio from a smartphone or tablet to Word , also in this case the procedure is extremely simple to implement. The Microsoft text editor, in fact, is available for both Android devices (also check on alternative stores if you don’t have Google features on your device) and iPhone/iPad and it’s free for all devices of 10.1″ or less (otherwise it requires a Microsoft 365 subscription, starting at 7 euros/month).

After starting the app with a double tap on its icon, you must press the [+] symbol at the top right, then press on the Empty document option (or open an existing document, if you prefer). When the text composition screen opens, a microphone symbol will also appear at the bottom right : just press it to start the dictation service. On first use you will be asked to allow access to the microphone: therefore press the item Allow (or OK on iPhone / iPad).

In the bottom panel, the keyboard functionality will be replaced by the dictation one and you will see a microphone inside a blue circle (on Android there is also the word Listening ): now it is possible to start audio playback from an external source, by approaching it to the microphone of the smartphone. At the end, press the microphone symbol again to stop the transcription and wait for the program to complete the drafting of the text.

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How to unwind audio for free

If you want to avoid putting your wallet and are therefore trying to realize how to unwind an audio for free , there are several solutions you can refer to. The same dictation services of Windows and macOS, illustrated in the chapter dedicated to Word, can be used in combination with other free text editors, but there are also other useful solutions for this purpose: you will find everything explained below.

Unwind audio on Windows

I will write an audio on your Windows with wordpad

By now it has become particularly easy to transcribe an audio on Windows , thanks in particular to the dedicated features implemented in the famous Microsoft operating system. In fact, it is possible to use any free text editor in conjunction with the integrated dictation service on Windows 10, to carry out a transcription comfortably and for free.

Let’s take as an example, therefore, the Wordpad software (but it is also possible to use Notepad , for example), already pre-installed on the operating system.

Once the program has started, before starting the dictation, prepare the audio source near your computer’s microphone, making sure that the volume is leveled so that the voice is as clear as possible. If it’s a file and you think you need to adjust the audio quality, I’ve prepared tutorials for you on programs to improve audio and how to improve recorded voice.

Now, press the key combination Win + H and you will see the dictation service bar appear at the top, with a microphone symbol on the left, which you will need to press to start the voice recognition service. Immediately after the initialization phase, you will see Listening , indicating that the microphone is already active and ready to interpret incoming audio.

It then starts playback from the audio source: as it progresses, the system will process the words, transforming them into text. If you want to check the result of the transcription, press the microphone symbol , then wait for the service to complete the transcription (there may be a slight latency in the conversion from audio to text). To resume, press the microphone icon again and continue with playback.

Unwind audio on Mac

Unwinding on Mac Pages

If you use an Apple computer for transcription , I immediately want to reassure you that the procedure for transcription of audio on a Mac is also very simple. First, you need to open any editor that comes pre-installed on your device, such as Pages (found in the Launchpad). In the window that opens, then press the wording New document and double-click on the Empty option , to create a new empty document, or open an existing one.

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Then prepare the external medium that contains the audio to be transcribed (smartphone or audio recorder, for example) and bring it close to the computer microphone, then press the control button twice to start the dictation function. If the dictation option is already active, you will be shown a box with a microphone symbol and you can immediately start playing the audio: you will see that the system will immediately proceed with the transcription, word by word, of the content.

If the feature is not active, however, you will see a window in which you will be asked to confirm your wish to use this service: press the OK item , then, in the following screen, click the Enable dictation button and press the key again twice Control button . To stop automatic unwinding, click on the Finish item .

Unwind an audio online

voice Google Docs

If you prefer to refer to a solution offered by the Web and, therefore, want to try to unwind an audio online , it is possible in particular to use a free resource made available by the Google application suite , by creating a new document.

To access, therefore, open Chrome or another compatible browser based on the same engine and access the main page of Google Docs with your Google account.

Once authenticated, press the white sheet icon with the colored [+] symbol inside it, above the wording Empty (top left) and you will thus be able to access the text composition screen, or select an existing document to edit .

Google document voice dictation

Now, click on the Tools menu , at the top right, and select the Voice typing item from the latter: you will immediately see a microphone symbol appear on the side of the document. Therefore, bring the sound source closer to the computer microphone, making sure that the audio quality is such as to make the voice understandable and possibly setting the volume of the device appropriately.

Finally, press on the microphone symbol above, which will turn red: in this phase you may be asked for consent for access to your computer’s microphone, which must be provided in order to proceed. Then start playback from the source device and comfortably watch the transcription of the audio: you can stop the transcription at any time to check the goodness of the result by pressing the microphone symbol again.

The final result will automatically save to the cloud or you can export it offline, via the File > Download menu . Read more here.

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App to unwind an audio

app per sbobinare voice notebook

If you are looking for apps to unwind free audio, alternatives to the solutions provided so far, don’t worry: the stores offer various possibilities, but I have selected for you only those that I consider most effective in the list below.

  • Voice Notebook (Android / iOS / iPadOS) — this very simple and functional app allows you to easily transcribe audio from an external source by tapping the microphone symbol from the main screen and bringing the sound source close to the device microphone. It ‘s free , but there are ads. In addition, some features in the basic version are blocked, but an upgrade to the Premium version can be performed for a one-off cost of 3.19.
  • Transcription tool (Android) – this is another app particularly suitable for transcription of audio on mobile , as it also allows you to transcribe audio files contained within the device. In this case, the advice is to turn up the volume of the smartphone’s multimedia sounds to the maximum, in order to facilitate interpretation by the Android dictation engine, which can be activated from the virtual keyboard that opens while using the app . This tool also offers ads and the purchase of a Premium version at a cost of 3.40 euros.
  • Voice to text (Android) — the app in question provides an internal dictation engine that activates immediately upon startup and is very effective in the transcription phase, thanks also to the custom dictionary feature that allows you to save particular terms. It is completely free, but contains advertisements.

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Other solutions to unwind an audio

express scribe

Do you want to try to consider other solutions to unwind an audio ? In this case I have some excellent news for you: I have created a dedicated article in which I have selected several particularly effective programs to perform transcription activities for free. All you have to do is test them and verify that they are suitable for your needs.

How to unwind an audio file automatically

The development of speech recognition technologies makes it possible to take advantage of extremely useful functions, capable of performing perfect transcriptions without having to type practically anything (with the exception, where necessary, of punctuation). Let’s see, therefore, how to unwind an audio file automatically .

Amberscript

Amberscript

Amberscript is a paid online transcription service , which allows you to upload an audio or video file which will then be analyzed by a special voice recognition software. Subsequently, the transcription can be further improved through the integrated online editor functionality .

There are many ways to subscribe to the services, to meet different usage needs: starting with prepaid plans at 15 euros per hour, or subscriptions at 40 euros per month to upload 5 hours of audio or video, for example. If you want to test how it works, however, you can take advantage of a free 10-minute trial.

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In this case, therefore, connect to the main page of the service and click on the Try Free button . On the following page, enter your email address and password (with relative confirmation) in the respective fields, then press the Subscribe button .

Subsequently, enter the information relating to Name , Surname and Country , then click on the Save button to be sent back to the main Amberscript screen, from which you can upload a file present on your device by clicking on the function in the center Upload File .

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In the following screen you can upload by drag and drop , selecting the file on your computer (making sure it is saved in one of the formats indicated below) and, holding down the left mouse button, physically moving it within the box. Alternatively, press the word Choose file to navigate within the folders of your PC and choose the file “manually”.

amberscript transcript screen

Wait for the content to load, then click on the Transcript box (if you want to convert to text only) or Subtitles (if you want to apply them to the video) and press the Order button in the right panel. Then wait for the file upload to complete and, in the following window, under the file being processed, you will also find an indication of the time required for transcription.

When the file is ready, you’ll simply have to click on it to access the text version in a special screen, which also contains numerous functions, among which I point out the possibility of listening to the audio simultaneously using an integrated player .

Other solutions to unwind an audio automatically

Amazon Transcribe

The one mentioned above is not the only resource for this kind of activity: if you are looking for other solutions to automatically transcribe an audio , below I will list those that I consider the best alternatives.

  • Amazon Transcribe — yes! The Seattle giant has also included this service in the immense portfolio offered by AWS cloud computing (Amazon Web Services). Subscribing to the aforementioned platform allows you to benefit from 12 months of free services, including 60 minutes of transcripts per month.
  • Dragon — if you are looking for high-level software for your professional activity, Nuance (a company owned by Microsoft) has developed this excellent speech recognition program, with solutions starting at 399 euros per month.

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