7 recommended transcription tools for Mac [other than Google Docs]
Dec. 3, 2023
I'm troubled by the lack of transcription apps that can be used on Mac.
As recording tools have become easier to use, opportunities to save the contents of work meetings and meetings as audio files and transcribe them (create minutes) have increased significantly.
However, most famous transcription software for PCs are only for Windows . The problem is that there is almost nothing that can be used with Mac.
What's more, even when I search online for transcription tools that can be used on Mac, I feel that there are many articles that introduce various functions and features in a jumbled manner.
Normally, the best transcription tool should be different depending on the purpose.
Therefore, this time, we have divided the methods of transcribing on a Mac into three main types, subdivided them into several more, and have compiled seven transcription tools that are perfect for each purpose and use .
This article explains how to utilize the standard voice input function of Mac and tips for transcribing audio and video for free using Google Docs, so if you read this article, you can use it now without having to prepare a Windows computer. You should be able to easily perform transcription work on your Mac. Please watch till the end.
3 ways to transcribe on Mac
There are three main ways to transcribe using tools:
- Manually transcribe using tape transcription software
- Automatically transcribe using an installed transcription app
- Automatically transcribe using a transcription tool that can be used in your browser
2 and 3 seem similar, but
- Installation type: Can be used offline (*exceptions apply)
- Browser type: Can be used on multiple devices
Each one has different characteristics, so it's a good idea to choose the one that best suits your work environment.
*Installed transcription software is not compatible with Mac, so there are some tricks to use when using it (see next section for details).
Furthermore, browser-based automatic transcription tools include
- Something that converts real-time input audio into text
- Something that converts recorded audio files (mp3, etc.) into text.
- Items that can be linked with web conferencing tools such as Zoom and Microsoft Teams
- Compatible with English and Chinese voice recognition and can also translate
- In addition to audio, it also transcribes videos, images, PDFs, etc.
There are various types such as.
In the next section, we will introduce transcription tools that are perfect for each of these seven approaches .
7 recommended transcription tools for Mac
Here is a special tool that streamlines manual transcription work .
In addition to voice control and changing playback speed using hotkeys and foot pedals , it also supports automatic file sending and receiving.
For personal use, you can use the free version (with limitations on compatible files), so it is recommended for beginners to transcription.
Here is an online tool that is perfect for easy real-time transcription .
The disadvantage of voice input using Google Docs is that the transcription stops when you do other tasks, but the main feature of this is that it can run in the background .
There is also an Android app. Although it costs a fee, it also supports converting audio files to text.
Recommended for those who want to transcribe audio files later and carefully edit text data .
Equipped with a WYSIWYG editor , it is possible to format it as a document. It also has a proofreading function , so you can correct any typos.
Like Speechnotes, real-time voice input is available for free, but converting files to text is only available on the Pro plan. However, even with the free Starter plan, you can transcribe audio and video files by using a ``trick'' (detailed below).
If you want to easily record meeting minutes , this tool is recommended.
Since the speaker can be identified with a single microphone, transcription can be performed even in places where multiple voices are being heard, just by leaving a single computer in place. It can also be used with popular web conferencing tools such as Zoom and Microsoft Teams , making it fully compatible with today's online meetings.
The best part is that it is available for free. If you have never used these tools, why not try them out first?
This app is recommended for those who want to transcribe foreign languages or translate them into Japanese .
Supports transcription in 104 languages including Japanese and English, and translation in 42 languages . It can also be used as a marking tool, so it can also be used as an English learning tool.
In addition to the web version that can be used in a browser, there is also a smartphone app. It has a lot of functions, so if you want to use it for a variety of purposes, you may be able to get by by installing this one first.
Recommended for those who want to extract text from image files and PDF data in addition to audio and video.
It's really easy to use, just access it with your browser and upload the file. We have an extremely wide lineup of compatible files, with over 20 types .
You can use it for less than 1 minute without even registering as a member. If you register as a free member, you will not only be able to convert up to 5 minutes of audio, video, and images (10 images) into text, but you will also be able to save and search transcription history.
Bonus: Voice Rep PRO
All automatic transcription software that is installed on a computer is basically compatible with Windows only.
If you really want to use it on a Mac, use a tool called a "virtualization app."
The above-mentioned app is famous. It is possible to start Windows software as if it were a Mac application .
*Since full operation cannot be guaranteed with the latest M1 Mac, we recommend using the previous model equipped with an Intel CPU if possible.
As for the software, `` Voice Rep PRO '' has a good balance between price and ease of use.
How to enable Mac standard real-time audio input
Did you know that Mac already has a voice input function ?
System Preferences → Keyboard → Voice Input
Just access the above and make the following settings.
- Audio input: ON
- Use extended audio input: ON
- Language: Added language (USA/UK) *1
- Shortcut: Set call key (default is Fn key twice)
*1: It is difficult to input alphabets if you only use Japanese, so we recommend adding English as well.
After that, just type the shortcut key you set, and a microphone icon will appear in the input field of the compatible app (you can also input punctuation marks and symbols, and set audio for line breaks and paragraphs).
There are a large number of compatible apps, and it works well with Office apps, memo apps, and various browsers, so be sure to give it a try.
How to transcribe audio/video with Google Docs
The well-known tool `` Google Docs '' is also equipped with functions such as real-time voice input and reading and transcribing audio and video played in the background.
However, Mac does not have a sound mixer function as standard like Windows, so to use this function you need to separately set up two things : a "virtual audio device" and an "audio mix app" .
The procedure is the following 3 steps.
- Install Soundflower (virtual audio device)
- Install RadioCast (audio mix app)
- System Preferences/RadioCast Settings
There are two sound setting items in System Preferences.
- Output: Soundflower (64ch)
- Input: Soundflower (64ch)
There are three setting items for RadioCast:
- Input: Soundflower (64ch) → Enable “Main” and “Aux 1”
- Output Main: Soundflower (2ch)
- Output Aux 1: Built-in output
After that, play the audio file you want to transcribe, start the voice input tool in Google Docs, and the text will be automatically entered into the editor.
In addition to Google Docs, you can use it with real-time voice input tools (such as writer.app ) that you use in your browser, so we recommend setting it up right away.
This time, we explained a transcription tool that also works on Mac .
Finally, I would like to summarize the apps and services introduced in the article.
- Express Scribe (manual transcription)
- Speechnotes (real time)
- writer.app (editor)
- Sloos (meeting minutes)
- Notta (multilingual support/translation)
- Mr. Transcription (Audio/Video/Image/PDF)
- Voice Rep PRO (installation type *requires virtualization app)
There tend to be fewer apps (regardless of genre) that can be used on Mac than on Windows, but if you look hard enough, you can find many useful tools on Mac as well.
If you're thinking, "I want to try out a Mac from now on!", don't be afraid to give it a try.
■ AI transcription service "Mr. Transscription"
"Mr. Transcription" is an online transcription tool that can be used from zero initial cost and 1,000 yen per month (* free version available).
- Supports more than 20 file formats such as audio, video, and images
- Can be used from both PC and smartphone
- Supports technical terms such as medical care, IT, and long-term care
- Supports creation of subtitle files and speaker separation
- Supports transcription in approximately 99 languages including English, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, German, French, Italian, etc.
To use it, just upload the audio file from the site. Transcription text is available in seconds to tens of minutes.
You can use it for free if you transcribe it for up to 10 minutes, so please try it once.
Transcription for audio / video / image transcription. It is a transcription service that anyone can use for free without installation.
- What is Mr. Transcription?
- Transcript images, sounds, and videos with Mr. Transcription
- Free registration
- Rate plan