Surface Pro and Dragon Naturally Speaking

Discussion in 'Microsoft' started by uhclem, Feb 11, 2013.

  1. uhclem

    uhclem Pen Pal - Newbie

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    I was very eager to try DNS on my Surface Pro 128, since I've used it for years on all of my desktops and laptops. (The fact that Siri dictation--not Siri queries--works so well on my iPhone is one of the things that made me think twice about the Surface. Ive done a *lot* of dictation via Siri; everything from notes for a book to almost all of my test messages.)

    I was disappointed to read some posts elsewhere (on DNS forums) suggesting that the Pro wouldn't be able to handle Dragon, but since it seemed to alll be just conjecture I bought the download of DNS 12 Home last night anyway. (I have earlier versions, but they're not supposed to play nicely with Win 8.)

    The good news: It works fine. Installed pretty easily, and using my Sennheiser headset mike (which seems to be about the best mike available for DNS) via USB, it gave the usual stunning recognition accuracy, as long as I dictated clearly (the "radio announcer voice" thing). I even read from some printed text to see if it could keep up with faster dictation, and it had no problem at all. Very satisfying.

    The bad news (at least from my POV): the built-in microphone is predictably terrible. It was able to pass the volume-setting part of DNS configuration, but it failed the signal::noise test. Playing back a recording, it was pretty easy to see why: not only is the recording volume low, but it's *very* noisy.

    I may have been doing something wrong, but I doubt it. Manufacturers (with the exception of Apple, and in their case probably only because it's also a cellphone) just don't seem to care about built-in microphones. Too bad.

    For now, I guess I'll be dictating when the Surface is functioning as my desktop, but typing when it's not.
     
  2. Steve S

    Steve S Scribbler - Standard Member Super Moderator

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    <<...The bad news...the built-in microphone is predictably terrible...>>

    uh: When has this been any different? It's for precisely this reason that all knowledgeable DNS users (and Windows Voice Recognition users, for that matter) utilize headsets if they're serious about recognition accuracy.

    Having said that, you are right that the Surface built-in mike picks up more fan noise than almost any other slate that I can think of...
     
  3. ahkim

    ahkim Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Good to know. Just an FYI- DNS 12 seems to run MUCH slower than DNS 11. I have both.
     
  4. r11

    r11 Scribbler - Standard Member

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    The built-in (native) speech reco is not half as bad. Give it a try.
     
  5. traulerson

    traulerson Pen Pal - Newbie

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    What kind of battery life do u get with DNS 12 running on surface pro? What USB dongle or sound adapter are u using w sennheiser mic?
     
  6. kraize

    kraize Scribbler - Standard Member

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    Honestly, after decreasing the microphone boost to 0.0 dB, increasing the volume to 100%, it performed a lot better in most cases.I don't really pick up that much background noise unless I'm using my stylus and either tapping really hard, or drop it on my desk.
     
  7. douglmft

    douglmft Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Use the feature on DNS 12.5 that lets you use your iphone or android as a mic. You will be very happy.
     
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