How to make clear recordings.

Although Transcript Divas Transcription Services UK take our transcription quality very very very seriously, we often receive recordings that contain instances where the quality of the recording is so poor that the voices of those speaking are indistinguishable. Being ex-market researchers we know what its like to be on the receiving end of an inaccurate transcript under a tight deadline so here is our advice.


A transcript is reliant on the quality of the recording. Most commonly a poor recording results from people talking over the top of one another (crosstalk), the microphone being placed away from the action (faint voices), or background noise drowning out speakers (background noise). So here are the DIVAS top three tips to achieving a good, clear recording.

Keep background noise down.

Microphones are excellent at picking up the background noise. Close all doors, and keep side conversations under control.

Control Crosstalk – only one person speaks at a time.

Make sure only one person speaks at the same time. Setting ground rules, and reminding people of them is a good rule of thumb. An active facilitator of the discussion is invaluable at this point.

Set Up Equipment Mindfully.

Point the microphone away from potential sources of noise and towards the speakers. Speak clearly, and place the microphone where it is likely to pick up all the people who will talk. Speak slowly. It often helps to place the microphone an equal distance from everyone who is ‘likely’ to speak. Use good equipment. Using a Dictaphone with an inbuilt microphone or recording using a mobile phone is likely to result in lost speech. Give Diva HQ a call to discuss options or check out our guide on transcription recording equipment.