Would a professional dictation device benefit you? Here are the FAQ’s.

As the only certified Olympus and Philips dealership for Central and Columbus, Ohio, we get asked this question all the time. As technology continues to evolve the benefits are greater than the reasons not to invest in a new system. As a representative with Murphy Company I work to match solutions with problems to offer a recommendation. Will a dictation or speech solution device improve your working environment? Will it streamline some processes and make things more efficient and increase revenue to the bottom line? We work with the customer to develop a sales solution that will benefit the business or department. The following are some of the most frequent questions. Whether you dictate 12 hours a day or 12 minutes a week, a digital voice recorder is a great way to remain mobile, while recording your important dictation and notes. Digital voice recorders are more popular today than ever, because of their inherent ability to provide a better, more efficient workflow through transcription and capture crystal clear sound quality.  Also, aging cassette equipment is getting harder and harder to find.

What is the difference between Digital and Analog systems?

The cassette is replaced by a removable media or an internal memory card where the recordings are done - the procedure is similar to today's digital cameras. The use of the handheld is extremely similar - a digital handheld allows you to record, rewind, fast forward, play, and overwrite. To transfer the dictation, a docking station or a USB cable is used that is directly connected to the computer. This will allow the automatic download of the dictations onto the computer. On the transcription side - the foot control and headset are directly connected to the computer - thus replacing the analog box on the table. With the help of a software, DSS Player Pro for example, the dictations can be heard and type directly into a word processing software.


What type of Digital machine should I purchase?

Four-position slide switch or push button operation? If the user has been operating dictation equipment for more than 10 years, he or she may only know the four-position slide switch, as it’s the most popular. Professional grade machines almost always offer a model with this configuration as many find it comfortable and familiar. Push button operation is more common as manufacturing costs are less, and generally can be found at a lower price point. If you’re buying a handheld for someone else to use, we strongly encourage you to purchase whichever configuration the author is accustomed to. This will be familiar for the user and increase the overall satisfaction he or she will have with the device.


What are the benefits of Digital Dictation?

Better sound quality, less loss of dictation through missing or broken cassettes. Other benefits are overwrite and selective erasing of dictations, as well as the sending of dictations via email, FTP or over a network which allows seamless integration into current computer infrastructures. Analog tapes had a maximum recording time of 30 minutes per side where with digital; hours can be recorded without the need of changing a tape.  Digital files can be stored on DVD or dedicated backup on a server for archiving purposes.


How are the dictations transcribed?

Once the typist receives the file, they will launch transcription software kit. This kit includes a headset, foot pedal and software which allow them to listen to the file just like the cassette tape. These items are plugged in and loaded on the PC for ease of use.

In which format are the digital files saved?

The voice files are saved into the International Speech Standard DSS (Digital Speech Standard). This file format was specially developed to enhance and maintain the quality of the human voice through a very high compression method. This high level of compression allows an easy transfer of files via email or over the network by only using low level bandwidth. The digital machines that record in stereo quality (for conferences and interviews) produce a file in very high quality.The DSS Player software can equally play all WAV or WMA files within its application.


Is the hardware and software compatible with Voice Recognition?

Voice (speech) Recognition is the process of converting digitally recorded voice into editable text. Most Digital recording and transcribing systems offer the ability to incorporate voice recognition into their software. There are numerous companies that sell the software which requires the user to “train” the software to recognize particular speech patterns.


What is the difference between QP, SP and LP settings?

As with video recorders, dictation machines have several different recording settings (Quality Play, Standard Play, Long Play etc.). With Standard Play (SP) a very high voice quality can be achieved, and a 10-minute dictation will require around 1 MB of disk space. With Long Play (LP) the quality isn't as high but twice as much speech can be recorded. The recording quality in LP mode is similar to that achieved using a traditional analog machine; however the best quality is produced in QP mode, whereby all dictations are also encrypted.


Can I incorporate my smart phone into a digital device?

Currently there are several digital dictation applications available for mobile phones. With mobile dictation apps, one can record, edit, and send dictation files over networks. Wireless transfer of dictation files decreases turnaround time and enhances personal productivity. Mobile dictation applications allow users to stay connected to dictation workflows through a network, such as the Internet.


What is the warranty, and can extended warranties be purchased?

A products warranty will vary from brand to brand and vendor to vendor. Buy a product with a warranty that puts your mind at ease, from a vendor that will stand behind your purchase with a satisfaction guarantee. A 1-year parts and labor is standard for a professional grade machine. Some vendors even offer extended warranties to provide you with extended protection.

I hope that the brief post will help in your decision process. For any inquiries, please contact us today.