Best Practices in Audio Localization

Best Practices in Audio Localization

You hear human voice recordings in many places, from online training modules and advertisements, to websites and message machines. If you want people to use your products internationally, you need to translate product-related voice recordings into the languages of your target markets.

This involves re-recording the audio in the language of the target customers.

KnowledgeTrans provides full start-to-finish services to complete your audio and voiceover work:

  • Professional voice talents
  • Purpose-built studio facilities
  • Language monitoring by second native linguist during the recording
  • Linguistic quality assurance
  • Editing of finished sound files
  • File output to client specifications and technical quality assurance

Important Steps in Audio Localization

  1. Transcribe the audio script – listen to the original recording, and write it down
  2. Translate the audio script. If it is, for example, in English, and you need to record it in French, then you must translate it in French.
  3. Time-stamp it. If it matters when the speaker utters particular sentences, you will need to indicate this in the script. This is key for time-sensitive recordings.
  4. Provide pronunciation guidelines. If there are certain terms that need to be pronounced in a certain way, you will need to document this for the actors.
  5. Find professional actors. Non-professional voice talents can do this work, but typically it takes them longer and may require more re-recording.
  6. Select the voice talent from several samples. Does the client want one voice? Two voices? Young or old? Male or female? “Hip” or “traditional’ voices?
  7. Record the script, using professional equipment.
  8. Do any editing. An engineer can correct the variation in speakers’ volume, tone, and distance from the microphone. The engineer can edit the audio and take out any ambient noise, including the human kind, machines, traffic noise, etc.
  9. Do Quality Assurance and linguistic validation of the recorded product.
  10. Produce the final file format. This depends on how the audio product is going to be used.

People Involved in an Audio Project

  • Transcriptor
  • Translator
  • Actor
  • Dialog director
  • Audio Engineer
  • Project Manager