[Air-L] recording and transcribing

Mary K. Bryson mary.bryson at ubc.ca
Wed Sep 15 08:19:14 PDT 2010

I have been using the Olympus DM and the more expensive, Olympus LS-11


I love them both, and think the DM is just great -- mid-range Olympus
digital recorders are available in Canada, typically very inexpensive, both
at Staples and London Drugs. All models and accessories are on Amazon at v.
good prices.

I have significantly increased audio quality of interviews by using a very
small, tabletop recorder tripod --- any camera store has these. The legs are
about 6inches long, and so the whole tiny little tripod fits in the
equipment bag. This brings the in-built microphone up to where it needs to
be, which when sitting at a table, will bring it about one foot from the

Olympus digital recorders come with Olympus' proprietary audio file
management and editing software, Sonority, which I use all the time to edit
audio files before they go to the transcriber, or to extract bits I want to
keep as small audio objects. The $10- upgrade is well worth it.


And yes, it's all dual platform compatible.


Dr. Mary K. Bryson, Professor and Director, Network of Centers and
Institutes in Education (NCIE) & Center for Cross-Faculty Inquiry (CCFI),
Faculty of Education, University of British Columbia
Archive: http://ubc.academia.edu/MaryKBryson
Current Research: http://www.queerhealth.ca

CCFI: Innovation Works Here

> From: Barry Wellman <wellman at chass.utoronto.ca>
> Date: Tue, 14 Sep 2010 11:31:06 -0400
> To: aoir list <air-l at aoir.org>
> Subject: [Air-L] recording and transcribing
> After testing, we strongly preferred Olympus DM voice recorders to iPhone
> even with the external mike. Olympus comes with apps that make it more
> optimal, such as not recording silences (assuming you're an
> ethnomethodologist).
> You can buy a quite cheap Olympus or spend a bit more money. IF you have
> the money, do it for clarity, apps. If it is your diss or major project,
> this is NOT where I would save money.
> I got talked out of using external mikes this time, and feel it was a
> mistake. Mike would have helped clarity.
> Clarity is really important for speed of transcription -- the real killer
> -- and for keeping whoever is transcribing (including yourself) happy.
> For transcribing, you can buy footpedals or you can install freeware which
> provides short cut keys. (Please don't ask me for brand names because a
> collaborator installed all this.)
>   Barry Wellman
>   _______________________________________________________________________
>    S.D. Clark Professor of Sociology, FRSC               NetLab Director
>    Department of Sociology                  725 Spadina Avenue, Room 388
>    University of Toronto   Toronto Canada M5S 2J4   twitter:barrywellman
>    http://www.chass.utoronto.ca/~wellman             fax:+1-416-978-3963
>    Updating history:      http://chass.utoronto.ca/oldnew/cybertimes.php
>   _______________________________________________________________________
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