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Affordable Video-to-Text Transcription Software

  • 1.  Affordable Video-to-Text Transcription Software

    Posted 11-02-2023 02:30 PM

    Hello, all. I am working on getting our veteran interviews transcribed and wanted to know if anyone has any recommendations for safe, reliable, and affordable video-to-text transcription software. I am currently using Microsoft Word to transcribe the videos through the "Voice" function, and then going through the interview recording to correct any errors to the AI transcription. While Word does a fairly decent job, the service is limited to 300 minutes of uploaded audio a month, which are going to get eaten fast given that our museum has over a hundred hours worth of interviews that need to be transcribed. Are there any services that allow unlimited transcription work? Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. 

    Keith Cook
    Associate Director of Collections and Archives
    390th Memorial Museum Foundation
    Tucson AZ

  • 2.  RE: Affordable Video-to-Text Transcription Software

    Posted 11-03-2023 08:19 AM


    While it is not free, we use both and for audio/video to transcript and caption services. Temi is done through AI and cost .25/min, Rev is done by humans and cost .99/min. In either case you can then review and edit the text in their interface.

    John ffrench
    Director of Visual Resources
    Yale University Art Gallery

    John ffrench
    Director, Visual Resources
    Yale University Art Gallery
    New Haven CT

  • 3.  RE: Affordable Video-to-Text Transcription Software

    Posted 11-03-2023 08:52 AM
    Edited by Tania Marien 11-03-2023 08:54 AM


    You may like what Descript does for you. You can transcribe and edit audio and video. You can edit the transcript like a Word document and changes will automatically be made to the audio or video. Go to

    Tania Marien

    The Freelance Project | TALATERRA
    Contributor, The Carbon Almanac

  • 4.  RE: Affordable Video-to-Text Transcription Software

    Posted 11-03-2023 09:31 AM
    Hi Keith -

    I haven't tried this service myself yet (it's on the list of things to do), but it comes highly recommended by people I trust (and who have used it) -- there's a free plan plus paid plans, and the paid aren't terribly expensive -- "Transcription hours" for free plan is 1 hour/mo; paid plans: $12/mo gets you 10 hr/month and $24/mo gets you 30 hr/month (discounts if you pay annually). The plans (including free) include more than automated transcription -- editing, captions, et al.


    Judy Fort Brenneman
    Greenfire Creative, LLC

    *we help you tell the story*
    Fort Collins, CO US

    Electric Lemons: Interpretation and the Art of Writing

  • 5.  RE: Affordable Video-to-Text Transcription Software

    Posted 11-03-2023 09:32 AM
    Edited by Tod Hopkins 11-03-2023 09:33 AM

    I like They were the cheapest, good option, but they recently raised their pricing. I'm not sure how competitive their new pricing is as I'm grandfathered in, but I like them. You can try them for free. 

    If you have the Adobe Creative Suite around somewhere, Premiere does automated transcription of everything you load into it, and it's pretty good. Advantages: you don't have to upload anything to the cloud, it's unlimited so effectively free if you already have Premiere. It is integrated with video editing, so everything you edit from the original is also transcribed as edited. You can improve the audio quality and re-transcribe if the original audio is weak, or if there are tracks you need to eliminate, and so on. Disadvantages: manual editing of the text is a bit clumsy compared to the cloud service, exporting is limited, and it's not shared automatically. You can export the transcripts, but only in text format, with no control over the formatting. Functional but maybe not ideal. I still use Otter a lot for bulk transcription of material I need to share with others prior to editing.

    If the audio is bad and you are not getting a good transcript, try AI noise reduction. You can use very aggressive noise reduction to make bad audio more easily transcribed even if sounds awful to your ear. I like but there are many. 

    Finally, re-reading can be a very effective problem solver. Essentially, you use any voice-to-text trained to your voice, listen to the recording and repeat to your voice-to-text, rather than typing. It's a bit tricky and slower, but can be a lifesaver for heavy accents or highly technical originals. It allows you to correct as you go, and even train the software. The brain is still smarter than AI.

    Tod Hopkins
    Hoptod LLC

  • 6.  RE: Affordable Video-to-Text Transcription Software

    Posted 11-03-2023 11:52 AM

    Have you tried uploading to Youtube? I know they offer a free transcription of videos. I'm not sure if you need to make the video public to get the transcription or not.... It could be worth a try.

    Matthew Isble
    Exhibit Designer & Founder of
    Crocker Art Museum
    Sacramento CA

  • 7.  RE: Affordable Video-to-Text Transcription Software

    Posted 11-03-2023 12:22 PM
    Edited by Drew Whatley 11-03-2023 12:28 PM

    I just saw yesterday that Audio Hijack, a well-respected MacOS audio capture software, has added a transcription component powered by OpenAI's model that doesn't have minute limits or anything. You'd have to convert the videos to an audio only format to run them through I think, but what I was reading was talking about it putting a major dent in Otter.AI's business model. While the software is $60 or so, if you’re doing bulk conversion it might be cheaper. I was planning to play around with it soon, but here's a link to a short write-up. If you're open to Mac, might be something worth checking out.

    Drew Whatley
    Museum Educator
    Whatcom Museum
    Bellingham WA

  • 8.  RE: Affordable Video-to-Text Transcription Software

    Posted 11-03-2023 01:38 PM

    We've been using Pioneer Transcription Services for years, both for our oral history program and some of our other projects.



    $1.75 per audio minute, they haven't had a surcharge for us for even three speakers (which surprised me). Accurate and quick.


    Sean Mobley,  (He/Him/His) | Social Media and Content Specialist

    The Museum of Flight
    9404 East Marginal Way S
    Seattle, WA 98108
    Work: +1 (206) 768-7201

  • 9.  RE: Affordable Video-to-Text Transcription Software

    Posted 11-03-2023 03:34 PM

    Hi Keith - sounds like there are a lot of good options already mentioned, but also wanted to add that if you find yourself needing translation as well (in addition to transcription and/or subtitles), I've had luck with Fiverr. The person we worked with there was quick, accurate, and affordable for Spanish/English translation and subtitles.

    Faith Haney
    Museology Graduate Program - University of Washington
    Seattle WA

  • 10.  RE: Affordable Video-to-Text Transcription Software

    Posted 11-05-2023 11:55 AM is great for that sort of thing.  They aren't free but are fairly inexpensive. We've used them for audio/video transcription, and they can do translations too which is great in terms of language accessibility.


    A picture containing logo  Description automatically generatedHeather Pressman (she/her)
    Director of Learning & Engagement

    Historic Denver Inc.'s Molly Brown House Museum

    1340 Pennsylvania Street

    Denver, CO 80203

    303-832-4092 ext.17

    Please note: I am in the office Sunday-Thursday

    Co-author of The Art of Access: A Practical Guide for Museum Accessibility
    Editor of
    An Accessible Past: Making Historic Sites Accessible
    Use the code RLFANDF30 for 30% off!


  • 11.  RE: Affordable Video-to-Text Transcription Software

    Posted 11-06-2023 09:55 AM is good. You might also try I've found them to have a faster turnaround than Rev. (They'll quote 3 to 5 days and get the transcript back in less than 24 hours often). They're also a bit less expensive. 

    Kyle Bowen
    Principal, Museums As Progress

  • 12.  RE: Affordable Video-to-Text Transcription Software

    Posted 11-06-2023 12:35 PM


    We use both Adobe Premiere's internal transcription system and AWS Transcribe on a batch processing basis. AWS is a pay for the actual processing you undertake model. Both work well, though both too have challenges with particular speakers and dialectical differences in pronunciation. Both do require you to do post-processing clean up and transcription document formatting, so it may make sense to outsource the work. We have found this to be especially the case if the AIs seem to perform poorly with a particular speaker. 



    Christopher von Nagy, Ph.D.
    Head, Shared History Program
    Applied and Public History / Museum Studies

    Department of History
    Mailstop 0308
    University of Nevada, Reno, 79557

    Exhibit gallery: First floor of Lincoln Hall and LH120 (Gallery120)

  • 13.  RE: Affordable Video-to-Text Transcription Software

    Posted 11-20-2023 12:14 PM

    We have been using this site: It has been working nicely for us, and it's only $0.01 per minute and with a minimum purchase of 45 Minutes ($4.50) 

    James McCormick
    The Aviation Museum of Kentucky
    Lexington KY

  • 14.  RE: Affordable Video-to-Text Transcription Software

    Posted 11-21-2023 03:17 PM


        If you have a subscription to adobe you can download Premiere and it will do it within seconds to minutes depending on how long it is.  If you need help with your project I'd be more than willing to help out.  Premiere does a good job at creating the transcription but will need to be reviewed for verification.  It would save you a lot of time for sure. I'm a vet myself so I'd love to help just give me a call and we can talk.  Not sure what your deadline is for them.

    Alan Byler
    AV / Lighting Technician
    State Museum of Pennsylvania
    Harrisburg PA
    (717) 783-9913

  • 15.  RE: Affordable Video-to-Text Transcription Software

    Posted 11-22-2023 09:31 AM

    Hi Keith,

    We, like others on this thread, use but the cost does add up. If you need a free solution, we have used Youtube. You upload the video, save it to Private, and in about 24 hours, YouTube will have created captions that you can download as a vtt or svt file. In the subtitles tab, select the 3 dots next to published. YT does a decent job. Never perfect but will save you some time. 

    Tamsen Young
    Digital Media & Strategic Initiatives Manager
    Museum at FIT
    New York NY

  • 16.  RE: Affordable Video-to-Text Transcription Software

    Posted 11-23-2023 06:02 AM

    Hi, Keith,

    We at Nubart are very satisfied with HappyScribe ( We work on digital audio guides, so we use it quite often.

    It's not completely free, but it's very affordable. They have a free plan to test it first. They make it very easy to edit mistakes.

    Just to clarify, we don't have any business ties with HappyScribe – this recommendation comes straight from our positive experience with the service.

    Wishing you the best of luck with your transcriptions!

    Rosa Sala