Transcription and translation rates and FAQs

Do you have a question about our transcription and translation services? Check out our frequently asked questions to see if you can find the answer… Fill out the Quick Quote for and we’ll respond within the hour.

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    Audio transcription is the process of converting recorded voice content as text. This is usually done to prepare for foreign language versions and subtitling.

    Transcription work is performed by a trained transcriber, and the method used, will depend on the intended use. Will the transcription be used for reference only, or will the transcription also need to be time-coded, so that it can be used to create a voice-over script or subtitling document?

    If the transcription doesn’t require time-codes to be added, the transcriber won’t need any specialist software. In this case any trained audio typist should be able to produce the transcription. However, if the transcript is being created from a video, for voice-over or subtitles translation, the transcriber will need the right software and training, to time-code the script appropriately. Typically, transcription for subtitling work is much more time intensive, as the time-codes must be logged in hours:minutes:seconds:frames, and the transcriber will need to allow enough time for the viewer to read each “subtitle”.
    The length of time taken depends on the intended use of the transcription, (for reference, voice-over or subtitling), and on other factors such as the quality of the recording, the clarity of the voices, and the number of voices.

    Transcription industry standards dictate that ten to fifteen minutes of speech takes about one hour to type, however if the audio needs to be time-coded it can take up to three times longer. As a guide:

    Transcription for reference: 60 minutes of audio can be transcribed per day

    Transcription for voice-over: 30 – 40 minutes of audio can be transcribed per day

    Transcription for subtitling: 20 – 30 minutes of audio can be transcribed per day

    The costs for transcription, and/or time-coding scripts, can vary depending on the language concerned, and the type of transcription required. We offer three levels of transcription service as follows:

    English Transcription for Subtitles: £4.50 per minute of video 

    English Transcription for Voice-Over: £3.50 per minute of audio/video 

    English Transcription for Reference (no time codes): £2.50 per minute of audio/video 

    Please note our minimum fee per project is £60. We can also transcribe and time-code foreign audio. Please contact us for pricing as the fees vary by language.

    Audio & Video Translation costs
    The cost of translation depends on what the translation is to be used for. Are we translating for subtitles where there is a strict character limit? Perhaps for voice-over which will have different time constraints. Or maybe a document or website translation is what you require. All our translations can be proof-read by a second senior translator, at additional cost, which is particularly important for marketing related copy.

    Translation for subtitles
    £11 – £19 per minute, (£120 minimum), varies by language and the level of service required.

    N.B. This price is for the translation only, and does not include video editing costs to sync and burn-in the translated subtitles to the video (Please see our subtitling FAQ for more information on these costs).

    Translation for voice-over
    From £0.13 per word (£75 minimum), varies by language and the level of service required.

    Translation for documents and websites
    From £0.11 per word (£75 minimum), varies by language and the level of service required.

    Remember, if you need guidance on prices we’re just a quick phone call or email away!

    Transcription of Audio & Video Content and how to do it well

    Case Study

    We have produced this short video to explain what you need to consider when having a video transcribed, and some of the pitfalls you should look out for.

    Transcribing for subtitles is very different from transcribing for voice-over, and both will require specialist knowledge by the transcriber. And both script versions will require time code reference points to be added as well.

    For captions, this assists the editor to make sure the subtitles are placed in exactly the right sections on the video. And for re-voiced foreign versions, each spoken section must be closely aligned with the original voice track.

    Translation of Audio and Video content and the potential pitfalls

    Case Study

    Most translation project go ahead smoothly, but there are some potential pitfalls and it’s important to understand how to avoid them.

    A word for word translation will sometimes work, but many scripts will contain slang and colloquialisms that have to be translated with care in order to retain the sense of what is being said.

    At Matinée, we always use tried and tested in-country professionals who are experienced in translating for voice-over or subtitles.

    Select a voice-over language

    Choose English read in a foreign accent

    Select a subtitle language

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