See my post on this thread about transcription buddy http://www.postgraduateforum.com/threadViewer.aspx?TID=18710
I did other people's transcriptions to fund my MA - a tedious task which I wouldn't care to repeat but it served its purpose ...
The software I used was Express Scribe. It's used by most audio typists and accepts nearly all file formats (or, if not, you can download format converters on 30 day trials for nothing). There are shortcut keyboard buttons for rewind, pause etc and it is also compatible with a foot pedal if you have one (I never bothered as I found them quite expensive). Best of all - it's FREE :-) Google it and you'll get a link to their site.
I have voice recognition software but it really doesn't help! It just about makes sense of my voice (but still needs lots of editing) and can't cope with different speakers. You could read it out yourself I suppose but I don't think it would save you much time. Plus, when it comes to analysis it really helps that you have done it yourself - so much of the interpretation can come down to how you have decided to transcribe and only you can really make those decisions. Of course, if you don't touch type, it will take you a lot longer - i strongly advise learning to touch type if you don't already.
I can touch type and do a nifty shorthand, but was distracted by the Express Scribe option, which indicates that interviewers can pre-record/train the software to recognise differing voices, with a drop-down menu allowing researchers to attach the profiled voice to the existing knowledge of the respondent's voice. Momentarily, I hoped I could invite respondents to provide a reading of a sample text, to inform subsequent transcriptions. This must exist already? Looks like I'm slipping on a tweed skirt and heels, into 1950s mode after all.
I use software called f4 which is free to download and good (http://www.audiotranskription.de/english/f4.htm). I also bought a cheap pedal for about £15 which definitely helps. However, with that amount of interviews I would get some transcribed professionally if you can - I'm getting most of mine done this way and I don't have half the interviews you do! I've been using this company - www.transcript-services.co.uk - she is good and I think pretty cheap too.
There is one... http://speechtotextservice.com I guess if they are the cheapest around. As freelance journalist I require transcription and I am pretty satified with their service. What I have liked it that work is done by professionals. So I think you can trust them.
I spent a couple of days looking for a transcription software for linux and found nothing, so I ended up doing my own software.
I made it cross-platform so it can be used in any system (windows, mac, or linux). Take a look at it and let me know what you think https://sourceforge.net/projects/evidencebucket/
I use Dragon whenever I need to work in MS Word or Excel. Unfortunately, Dragon is not designed to transcribe multi-speaker recordings like lectures or interviews. I used Express Scribe for these purposes for about a year. Recently discovered Transcriber Pro for Windows. I like it for speakers' names and timestamps automated insert. It is available for download at CNET.com or http://www.transcriber-pro.com
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