The Basics of Audio Translation

Last Updated On: July 12, 2017

inGeneral, Translation Tips

There are many translation services in Australia that do audio translations. This basically involves subtitling and voice-over services. This translation process is becoming more and more popular as localization of webpage content and other marketing material to be effective needs to be translated into the most commonly used languages.

Many businesses see no reason why they should use a human translator for translating their voice-over input on their websites or their video descriptions. They simply use machine translation options. As you can imagine, video content presented by a company manager or key employee is usually spoken in relation to the idiosyncrasies of the product that is being marketed. Machine translations don’t fully understand language subtleties or idioms used by these key people so can never fully translate a video discussion about a product.

It will be a long time yet before machines are able to adapt humour and colloquialisms that are embedded in audio and video presentations. For example, subtle humour is often specific to a particular person which is almost impossible to input into a machine translator programme. However a competent translation services can quickly pick up the innuendos and idioms and translate audio presentations in the right language.


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    Apart from voice-overs and online video-audio presentations there are a multitude of situations where an audio presentation may be required in a number of different languages and the user can switch the presentation to their preferred language. A good example is at an iconic cultural site such as Uluru in Australia or an historic site like Stonehenge in Britain which visitors speaking scores of different languages visit on a daily basis. This sort of audio translation can be done well by a number of translators working together to ensure the tone of the audio presentation is representative of the original language.

    Some of the common languages such as English, German, French, Italian and Spanish can normally be accessed these days on voice-overs and online video-presentations or in museums around the world. Increasingly, languages such as Chinese, Russian and Arabic are becoming integrated into various multi-language audio presentations around the world.

    If you are thinking about adding audio translations to your advertising material you do need to take into account that translations vary in length depending on the language. For example, English is a relatively short language while German is considered to be a ‘long’ language. This is particularly important in a PowerPoint presentation where the audio translation has to match the sequencing of the slides.

    Your professional translation services will be able to explain to you the intricacies of audio translation and provide a group of experienced audio translators to do the translations for you.

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