Different Equipment Used In Audio Recording Of Speech

Minidisk Audio RecordersThe art of audio typing has definitely come a long way thanks to technology. While much has changed when it comes to transcription, the need to record high quality audio files is still an important part of audio typing. Most audio typists have long made the switch from analogue recorders such as tapes and cassettes to using digital recorders, which include PDAs, laptops, memory, and disk recorders.

These new modern gadgets offer audio typists and their clients a variety of options when it comes to recording speech. They also help to ensure that speech recordings are of sufficient quality thereby making the process of audio typing easier. Below is a brief look at some of these speech-recording tools.


Minidisk recorders make compressed recordings on tiny magneto-optical disks which are protected in a cartridge. These small disks use high-tech compression systems. With minidisks, you have the option of choosing between a regular minidisk or the Hi-MD minidisk recorder which is more advanced. It uses a larger capacity disk and can record up to 1hour of audio in an uncompressed format.


Better known as PDAs, Palm-top computers are ideal for audio typists who require a portable recording system. These devices are affordable, small, light, and feature a long-battery life. They are also equipped with memory and network interfaces. PDAs either come with their own inbuilt audio system or have an external microphone input slot. The microphone inputs are specifically constructed for voice recording and come with a combination of microphone and headset.

Hard Disk Recorders

Hard disk recorders make both compressed and uncompressed digital recordings onto high-capacity drives inside the recorder. The recordings stored in hard disk recorders can be easily transferred to other media platforms such as computers and CDs. Hard disk recorders are not portable.


Laptops can make digital recordings provided they are equipped with an external microphone for speech input. To ensure efficiency in audio typing when using laptops as speech recorders, audio typists are advised to ensure that the microphone input is of good quality. A microphone pre-amplifier can also be used to make the recording more clearer.

Solid-State Recorders

Solid-State Recorders (SSRs) feature state-of-the-art technology which enables them to store audio data in memory chips/cards such as compact flash cards. This type of speech recorder supports both compressed and uncompressed formats and allows you to make a choice between the two. The compressed format allows you to record lengthy audio files. However, this produces audio files of lower quality than the uncompressed format. Most SSRs provide faster speed for data saving and retrieval and allow for simultaneous playback and recording.

DAT Recorders

Digital Audio Tape (DAT) recorders made digital audio recording on 4 or 6mm tape cartridges. These devices use a video recording mechanism with a rotating head tape. DAT recorders produce high quality recordings that they can actually be used in professional broadcasting. These devices are quite fragile and as such should be regularly maintained and transported with care.

The above mentioned equipment are just a few examples of the various speech recording devices you can use to record your audio files before hiring an audio typists for transcription services. Keep in mind that recording high quality audio files enables you to receive accurate transcripts and can lower service rates.

This article was written by Cameron Blair, a writer and audio typing enthusiast. Cameron has written several articles for this website. She loves to provide useful information related to transcription services.