Dragon Dictate Medical for Mac v4 with Philips DPM8000 and Olympus DS-7000 digital recorders

Digital Voice Recorders and Dragon Dictate Medical for Mac

For those clinicians who prefer to work wirelessly, and need to be able to make dictations for transcription later, the digital voice recorder is an excellent option.  Where there are limitations of time, attention, space, technology or location, a DVR can offer a straightforward wireless recording experience on the go.

The idea behind pairing a digital voice recorder with Dragon Dictate Medical for Mac is to provide a pathway for asynchronous speech recognition—in other words, to allow files to be dictated and processed in two different stages. Those healthcare professionals who embrace the concept of the digital voice recorder still have the option to use Dragon Medical for the transcription process.

In this post, we’re going to give you some pointers on how to get started using your digital voice recorder with Dragon Dictate Medical for Mac v4. While we can’t cover everything, we think you should be more than ready to transcribe files after following these tips.

As mentioned, this only applies to the Mac edition of Dragon Medical, which is an entirely separate application from the Windows edition. All references to Dragon Dictate Medical for Mac (DDM4M) pertain specifically to version four of the software, which was released in the first quarter of 2015.


Recorder Guidelines

Before you jump in with both feet, you should be aware of a significant, but not insurmountable, limitation of DDM4M. Any voice recorder you choose needs to be able to record in one of these file formats:

  • AIF
  • AIFF
  • M4A
  • M4V
  • MP3
  • MP4
  • WAV

The digital voice recorders that we prefer with DDM4M are the Philips DPM8000 and the Olympus DS-7000. Both devices have high-quality microphones and the ability to record files in either WAV (PCM) or MP3 formats.

Please note that the Olympus DS-7000 does not record in WAV or MP3—only DSS or DS2; however, the included software will convert the file to an .AIFF.

Once you have an appropriate DVR selected, you’re going to want to create a training file for Dragon. Find a piece of text that’s typical of something you would dictate regularly, and make sure you have 90 seconds of material to record. Set your device to record in the right format and create your file.

Then, plug your DVR and download the training file to your desktop. Your digital recorder should show up on your desktop (as a white drive icon), or in Finder > Devices. Open it up and drag the appropriate file onto your computer.


Configuring Dragon Dictate Medical for Mac v4 for DVRs

Next, you’re going to add the recorder to the transcription sources of your user profile. If you haven’t created a Dragon Dictate Medical for Mac voice profile already, you’ll need to do that first.

  1. In the Audio Sources section of the Profile screen, select the circular (+) button next to “Transcription.”
  2. Name the transcription source after your recorder, e.g., DPM8000 or DS-7000.
  3. After adding the transcription source, you’ll be prompted to point to a 90 second audio file of your voice. As discussed, it must be recorded in one of the seven approved audio formats. This is your training file, which you previously put on your desktop.
  4. Once you have the file selected, Dragon will transcribe a portion of it and then ask you to make corrections. Click the text in the top left of the document, and a correction window will open.
  5. Make any changes needed, using the playback feature to hear the corresponding audio for that section of text.
  6. Confirm that the text is correct by clicking [Accept], and do the same for the subsequent text excerpts. When finished, click the [Train] button. Dragon will now ingest all of the training and correction data you’ve provided.
  7. Once training is finished, Dragon will attempt to transcribe your entire training file. You can cancel out of it if you wish.

Pro Tip: If you’re in a hurry, you can click [Accept] without making corrections (Step 6). You may sacrifice accuracy by doing this, but Dragon will still transcribe your files.


Transcription Tips

After you’ve done the training, Dragon will ask you what to do next: go to the Profile Menu, transcribe another file, or edit the transcription that was just made (or cancelled). Proceed as desired; you are now ready to transcribe dictations. If you need to transcribe a dictation and this prompt is not displayed, you can initialize the process by going to Tools > Transcribe.

Once you’ve gotten the basics, you may want to try a few best practices that make transcription easier to manage and more effective:

Downloading and Organizing Dictations

In order to make dictations easy to find, create a dedicated folder on your desktop. When you dock your recorder, open it from the desktop or Finder and select your files. Drag them into your dictation folder on the desktop.

This way, when you click Tools > Transcribe in Dragon, you’ll be able to point to the folder you created, rather than wasting time locating your files.

Please note: The Philips DPM Connect tool, a free application that downloads files automatically, does not work with WAV or MP3 formats. Sorry.

Increasing Accuracy

During the transcription process, Dragon does not learn when you make corrections to your document. Rather, in order to get better recognition results, you’ll want to use the ten second training tool.

Create a file of at least ten seconds and upload it to your computer. Then click on Tools > Transcription Training. Dragon will prompt you for the appropriate file, just like in the initial training phase. Select your ten second dictation, and then make any necessary corrections in the same way you did before.

Other than the ten second training, try adding new words for Dragon to recognize—especially if it they are proper names. You can use the Vocabulary Editor to add single words, while the Vocabulary Trainer will add words by scanning your documents.

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If you are familiar with Dragon Medical for Windows, you’ve likely noticed how different Dragon Dictate Medical for Mac v4 truly is. Don’t be shy: check out our other Dragon for Mac blog posts, or reach out to us by clicking the button below.