Audio Devices

Reasonable guide to microphone choice


Almost all the microphones that are used with a personal computer are condenser microphones, based on an electret and work using a dielectric material that is permanently electrically charged, which modifies its own voltage when stressed by sound waves.

They generally include a pre-amplifier which in turn requires a small power supply. The voltage alteration caused by sound waves (an analog signal) is then converted into a digital signal via a sound card. Microphones based on this technology may vary:

  • USB Microphones
  • Non USB Microphones
  • Microphones with Control Buttons
  • Wired Headset
  • Wireles Headset
  • Handheld Microphones
  • Table Microphones

USB or non-USB is the first important distinction. All the microphones, as we have said, create an analog signal that must be digitized to be used for voice recognition. The conversion can take place via an audio card that can be internal or external to the computer. The use of USB microphones that convert from analog to digital on the outside of the computer has certain advantages:

  • the USB sound card (which can be contained in the microphone itself) digitizes outside a PC inside which the electric fields could pollute the quality of the result;
  • the external and dedicated sound cards are designed for the digitalisation of the audio and provide the correct voltage for the microphone and guarantee a better result;
  • the use of an external sound card, usable on different computers, guarantees the same quality even on different machines.

The use of microphones with an external and dedicated sound card is not essential, but highly recommended. Many microphones, both with and without wires, include a USB sound card (including the Philips SpeechMike). If you decide to use a microphone that does not include its own sound card, we recommend using an external USB card.

Microphone to be held or headset: it is understandable that many do not like the idea of ​​wearing a headset, but it is certain that this device allows for free hands. A headset may not be the best solution for the doctor who is preparing to dictate reports in very short dictation sessions. It is also worth remembering that most radiologists over the years have become accustomed to having to work with a dictation device. The handheld microphones offered by Reconice, emulate in all respects the devices commonly used (digital or analogue dictaphones), adding very useful interactive features. In general, the functions accessible from the microphone buttons can also be activated by voice.

In summary: If you need to have your hands free, use a headset microphone. If your dictation sessions are not very long, but fragmented throughout the day and you are used to using a dictaphone or a microphone, the handheld microphone is more suitable and undoubtedly complete in its functions.

Wired or wireless: in recent years, products based on wireless technology, whether Bluetooth or DECT, have increased. Not all wireless microphones are created equal and often the devices suffer from episodes of disconnection or discontinuity in the transfer of audio. Speech recognition solutions, in the case of interrupted audio, have a tendency to make a big mistake (due to the error amplification phenomenon).

Quality wireless microphones are double the price of those with cable. Nevertheless, the benefits for some are important for doctors who must dictate while moving around in a room, or having to keep their hands free.

In summary: if you need to dictate hands-free and without stumbling through the wires, choose your microphone carefully, based on the quality of the connection and the audio. Autonomy of use and speed of charging are other essential elements for the choice.

The choice of microphone for those who use a voice recognition system is critical, to ensure maximum accuracy, minimizing errors. There are many microphones that guarantee excellent performance for use with a voice recognition system. In many cases the difference in accuracy and background noise cancellation is minimal. Depending on the use and needs of the user, it is able to assist customers for the best choice. reconice offers a wide range of audio devices, to meet the needs of all professionals who use a voice recognition system, both from their workstation and on the move.

Handheld Microphones

Handheld Microphones

The most used models include control buttons, trackpad or trackball and speaker.

Wireless Headset

Cuffiette senza fili (wireless)

To be able to work hands free and for maximum freedom of movement.

Wired headset

Cuffiette con fili (wired)

For hands-free reporting, without having to worry about putting the headset on charge.

table Microphones

Microfoni da tavolo

For hands-free reporting, without having to wear a headset.

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