Limecraft offers a number of different possibilities to transcribe audio into timed text. In case you have an existing transcript, we recommend to use the alignment function. In case you don't have an existing text, you can rely on Automatic Speech Recognition (ASR). In case you want to transcribe audio in a language which is not supported by Automatic Speech Recognition or in case the quality of the audio is not sufficient to use AI transcription, you can use Limecraft to manually transcribe audio thereby adding time codes to the text. This article describes the steps to manually transcribe audio into timed text.

1. How to enter the Transcriber application

Find the Go to transcript action on a clip thumbnail and click it.

Limecraft screenshot detail showing how to enter the transcript application

When opening the transcription app for a clip which has not been transcribed yet, you’ll find a window similar to the one below, allowing you to indicate the primary language and to select from the different options of transcription: automatic transcription using Automatic Speech Recognition (ASR), alignment of an existing transcript, or manual transcription.

Limecraft screenshot showing a clip which has not been transcribed yet, allowing you to indicate the primary language and to select from the different options of transcription: automatic transcription using Automatic Speech Recognition (ASR), alignment of an existing transcript, or manual transcription.

2. Manual transcription 

If you select the third option as seen in the screenshot above, a blank transcript appears:

Screenshot detail showing the main controls of the Limecraft transcript editor in case of manual transcription

At the top left corner, you see the VIEW | EDIT toggle. The ‘EDIT’ option should automatically be selected. Some extra buttons appear in the player controls at the bottom of the screen.

2.1 How to start Writing

To write the transcript, we will “record” time ranges and provide text for them.

Screenshot detail showing the player controls in the Limecraft transcript editor including SET IN (timecode), SET OUT (timecode), Play, Play from IN to OUT, Edit Speaker, and more.

Let’s explain that a bit more. Play your video with the basic player controls. When you hear something you want to transcribe, press the SET IN button. The player starts playing and the following dialog pops up:

Limecraft infographic showing the screenshot detail in case you manually edit a transcript fragment, allowing you to modify the text and the timecodes. Upon "Confirm", the IN and OUT time codes will be used to interpolate timecodes of individual words.

After a few spoken words, press the SET OUT button. Type the words you heard, and press confirm. That’s it! You just added your first words to the transcript, and they all have timecodes linked to them. The start of the first word corresponds to the IN timecode of the dialog, the end of the last word corresponds to the OUT of the dialog, and all words in between get time codes by interpolation between IN and OUT.

Now click the SET IN button again to start recording a new time range (which starts at the OUT of the last added range) and repeat the same process. While the dialog is open, you can tweak the timecodes by typing a new timecode, or by moving the playhead and pressing SET IN (to change the IN timecode) and SET OUT (to change the OUT timecode).

To get the most out of the transcriber, use it via its shortcuts F9 (or fn+F9 on a Mac) to SET IN, F10 (fn+F10 on a Mac) to SET OUT and Enter to confirm the dialog. No mouse needed!

2.2 Shortcuts, shortcuts, shortcuts!

We strongly advise using the shortcuts to control the player and setting IN and OUT points. We use the F1, F2, … keys on your keyboard. So pressing the F9 key on your keyboard will have the same effect as clicking the SET IN button on the screen. Using these shortcuts will maximise your transcription speed.

If you are using a mac (and on some other devices), the shortcut is fn+F1, fn+F2, … So you have to press and hold the fn key while pressing the F1 key (and similar for F2, F3, …). As this is a bit clunky, you might consider configuring your Mac to use F1, F2 etc. as standard function keys as explained here.

Picture showing the function keys on an Apple keyboard

Another shortcut you can use is with the letters J, K and L on your keyboard:

  • J: 'playerSlower'
  • K: 'togglePlay'
  • L: 'playerFaster'

3. Text-based Editing or Using the Transcript to Mark Subclips

If you want to use the transcript to mark up interesting parts and create quotes, make sure the transcript is in VIEW mode and enter the Logging app via the SUBCLIPS button in the navigation bar on top:Limecraft screenshot showing how to open the logging app next to the transcript editor to allow text-based editing

The interface now contains a player at the left, the subclips sidebar at the right and the transcript in the middle:Limecraft screenshot showing the concept of text-based editing. It allows you to markup fragments in the transcript to create subclips.

Note: The player controls and the subclips sidebar are explained in detail here. This article is about using the transcript text to create subclips.

4. Change your work area

At the top right corner of the application, you’ll find the help buttons and some toggles to show or hide panes in the application.

Go ahead and try clicking some of the buttons. Click the button again to revert the action. For example, you can hide the video if you have a small screen or if you just prefer it that way.

The help button on the far right will show a menu with a ‘talk to us’ option. Click it to get in touch! We like to help you out if you get stuck for some reason, and we like to hear your experiences with the application!

Download Transcriber Cheat Sheet

Download the cheat sheet, print it, and hang it on your wall! Download Transcriber Editor Cheat Sheet