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The Hearing Impaired and Dialogue Speed

Hello, Chinesepod Team!

Is there’s a way to slow down the speed of the dialogue? I am hearing impaired and sometimes certain lessons are difficult to understand giving the brevity of dialogue and the background sounds in the script. Thank you for your time.

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This would be a cool feature for anyone. I noticed other online educational sites such as team treehouse and allow you to slow down or increase the dialogue speed of a lesson. It would be a great feature to have in the future.

This is an important enhancement that I think would benefit many users. I will look into solutions for slowing down the audio and video player.

Thanks for your feedback.

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I know lots of players have this feature so if you download the lesson file you can open it in a player that lets you slow it down. For example, in Windows Media player when I right click the play button I see choices of slow, normal, and fast. [ Ctrl+s, Ctrl+n, Ctrl+g ]. I read somewhere that Windows Media player is gone from Windows 10 though. If using iOS check out an app called AudioTracker. You can play DJ and rewind the “record” (e.g. your CPod audio file) as many times as you like. I don’t think you can slow down though.

Foreign languages often sound “too fast” for all of us, even those with normal hearing, so you may want to experiment with a mix of slow and fast listening experiences. Also, if you are a premium subscriber you can play the lines of the dialog one at a time from the dialog tab. These are separate recordings, not excerpts from the podcast, and so will be free of sound effects.

Audacity does an incredibly good job of slowing down anything. I sometimes slow the dialogues down 20% or so until I am sure of what is being said, Then I go back to the original speed. Just highlight any part you want slowed down and go to ‘Effect’ then ‘tempo’. This will slow the sound down without greatly affecting the sound quality and will not change the pitch.

If you’re using the ChinesePod RSS feed, the inbuilt podcast player by Apple, and 3rd party apps on Google play also have the ability to listen at 0.5x / 2x speed :smile:

Another option to improve sound quality would be to change the microphone technique. Radio and sports announcers for example have microphones close (with pop filters) for clarity. I think Chinesepod already use this technique for the dialogues, but the discussions are more distant. This is no problem if you’re listening on headphones, but on speakers there is a slight drop in clarity.

We already use pop filters, studio-condenser mics and shock mounts for the podcasts. The videos are currently just a single mic on the table which is not ideal at the moment.

@GwilymJames I saw that you were using lavalier microphone in the last video and the sound seemed pretty good. That might be the best solution going forward for the video type podcasts.

Although we wore lapel mics, the sound quality was not ideal, so we went with the desk mic in the end. We’re working on improving the mic situation (reducing the ambient noise) but in general we’re not a fan of lapel mics, like Wistia

That sennheiser shotgun mic looked pretty cool in the Wistia video, too bad it’s really expensive. I’m not sure how large the space is that you usually film the videos in but perhaps putting up some sound dampening foam would help reduce echo.

Perhaps something like this?

Record it twice. Once at normal speed, the second at a slower one. That would be useful. Especially when you are trying to process tons of vocab.