How to play or convert Olympus .ds2 audio files to .dss


Download sample .dss and .ds2 audio files at the end of this blog post …

#UPDATE# As of Express Scribe version 5.30+, the Windows version can now 
play .ds2 files from Olympus and Philips - click here for more details

This is a hot topic in the transcription world currently. The new DSS Pro (.ds2) audio format now in use by default on all the Olympus digital dictaphones: DS-2400, DS-3400, DS-5000 and DS-5000iD. It is a hot topic for a couple of reasons, often a transcriber can not play the new .ds2 audio files because:

  1. Transcriptionist has an older Olympus transcription kit (AS-2300 or AS-4000)
  2. Transcriptionist uses free Express Scribe software

There are a number of ways to get around this glitch and the options depend on what you have already and what operating system you use. I will try to cover all possible solutions, if I miss one please let me know and I will update this post. What I will say right from the outset is that these solutions are work arounds for typists who choose not to stay up-to-date with the latest software. By purchasing an Olympus AS-5000 transcription kit (or just the DSS Player Pro transcription module software AS-5002 if you already own an RS-28 Olympus foot pedal) all these issues will go away. The latest DSS Player Pro transcription module is fully compatible with the DSS Pro (.ds2) audio files.

So let me try and cover all options for those who do not have the latest DSS Player Pro transcription module.

Dictation with Olympus DS-3400/DS-5000/DS-5000iD Mac or Windows User – Typist with Olympus AS-4000 transcription kit on Windows

The AS-4000 transcription kit comprised a foot pedal, headset and DSS Player Pro version 4 transcription module software. Using the DSS Player Pro version 5 software which comes with the DS-3400/DS-5000/DS-5000iD the DSS Player Pro version 4 transcription module can be updated, free of charge, to DSS Player Pro version 5 transcription module. Thereby giving you a transcription kit compatible with the new .ds2 audio files. However, you must have an RS-28 transcription foot pedal, the older RS-26 transcription foot pedal will not function with DSS Player Pro version 5 transcription module. The upgrade will generate a new licence key specifically for the DSS Player Pro version 5 transcription module. You must write this licence key down and keep it safe. I suggest write it on a post-it note and keep it with the DSS Player Pro version 4 software CD and licence key.

Dictation with Olympus DS-3400/DS-5000/DS-5000iD Mac User – Typist with Olympus AS-2300/AS-4000 transcription kit on Mac

As you will likely already know, the functionality of the DSS Player Version 7 Plus on the Mac lacks some of the functionality of the DSS Player Pro v5 software for Windows. One key feature missing is the ability to set Classic Mode on your Pro Series recorder through the Mac software, this can only be done using the Windows dictation module. Therefore you will either need a Windows machine to install the DSS Player Pro v5 dictation module to change the default recording mode on your dictaphone or if you run Windows on your Mac using virtualisation software (VMWare Fusion, Parrallels, VirtualBox) you can set it using your Windows virtual machine.

If you do not have a Windows machine available your options are: 1. Upgrade your transcription kit to an AS-5000 or 2. Auto convert on download all dictation recorded on your DS-3400/DS-5000/DS-5000iD to .aif format which can be transcribed by older Olympus transcription kits on Mac. On your Mac select Preferences and then click the Download tab. Then tick “Convert to AIFF file during download”, see below.

Set Olympus DS-3400 DS-5000 DS-5000iD to auto convert .ds2 audio files on download

Dictation with Olympus DS-2400 – Typist with Olympus AS-2300 transcription kit on Windows

The AS-2300 transcription kit comprised a foot pedal, headset and DSS Player Standard version 4 transcription module software. Using the DSS Player Standard version 5 software which comes with the DS-2400 the DSS Player Standard version 4 transcription module can be updated, free of charge, to DSS Player Standard version 5 transcription module. Thereby giving you a transcription kit compatible with the new .ds2 audio files. However, you must have an RS-28 transcription foot pedal, the older RS-26 transcription foot pedal will not function with DSS Player Standard version 5 transcription module. The upgrade will generate a new licence key specifically for the DSS Player Standard version 5 transcription module. You must write this licence key down and keep it safe. I suggest write it on a post-it note and keep it with the DSS Player Standard version 4 software CD and licence key.

Dictation with Olympus DS-3400/DS-5000/DS-500iD on Windows – Typist with Express Scribe on Windows

For this combination we have a few options:

  • Set the recorder (DS-3400/DS-5000/DS-5000iD) to record in .dss format (known as Classic mode) by default instead of .ds2
  • Convert the audio from .ds2 to .dss before sending to the typist
  • Typist purchases the DSS Player Pro version 5 dictation module (AS-5001)
  • Typist purchases the DSS Player Pro version 5 transcription kit (AS-5000)

Set the recorder (DS-3400/DS-5000/DS-5000iD) to record in Classic Mode by default

Using the DSS Player Pro version 5 dictation module it is possible to set the DS-3400/DS-5000/DS-5000iD to record by default in the .dss audio format, this is know as “classic mode”. This is set in the dictation module software itself and the setting uploaded to the recorder. View ourvideo demonstrating how to set Classic Mode.

Convert the audio from .ds2 to .dss before sending to the typist

With the files from the recorder loaded into the DSS Player Pro dictation module it is possible to convert the file format from .ds2 to .dss by simply right-clicking on the file and selecting “Convert Dictation..” and then select the audio format you want to convert to, the choice includes .dss

Convert .ds2 files to .dss inside the DSS Player Pro dictation module on Windows

Typist purchases the DSS Player Pro version 5 dictation module (AS-5001)

This is the cheapest option for the transcription typist. The dictation module software is the same software that comes with the DS-3300/DS-5000/DS-5000iD, this can be installed on a Windows PC and can be used when receiving a .ds2 file simply for audio file conversion to .dss. If you are an independent or outsourced transcription business this is a cost effective solution as the AS-5001 (DSS Player Pro dictation module) is only RRP $160.00 incl. GST. By using the DSS Player Pro version 5 dictation module you can continue to use Express Scribe. Do not be tempted to ask to borrow the software CD that comes with the recorder, the licence is a single user licence and would have been used and registered when the person using the recorder would have installed their software.

Typist purchases the DSS Player Pro version 5 transcription kit (AS-5000)

This is for the serious transcriptionist. The AS-5000 kit comes with all you would need, Olympus RS-28 foot pedal, transcription headset and DSS Player Pro version 5 transcription module. This is the perfect accompaniment to the DS-3400/DS-5000/DS-5000iD recorders and can be set to automatically receive and load transcription from these recorders. All the features available in the dictation module are passed to the transcription module like prioritisation and audio notes. The RRP for the AS-5000 kit in Australia is $525.00 incl. GST – note this kit will accept audio from ALL Olympus digital voice recorders.

Dictation with Olympus DS-2400 – Typist with Express Scribe on Windows

It is not possible to set the DS-2400 to record in “classic mode” like the Pro series dictaphones. So this leaves the transcriptionist with only a couple of options.

  • Typist purchases the DSS Player Pro version 5 dictation module (AS-5001)
  • Typist purchases the DSS Player Standard version 5 transcription kit (AS-2400)

Typist purchases the DSS Player Pro version 5 dictation module (AS-5001)

As just covered above, this is the cheapest option for the transcription typist. The dictation module software is the same software that comes with the Pro series recorders DS-3300/DS-5000/DS-5000iD and can be installed on a Windows PC for audio file conversion from .ds2 to .dss. If you are an independent or outsourced transcription business this is a cost effective solution as the AS-5001 only RRP $160.00 incl. GST. By using the DSS Player Pro version 5 dictation module you can continue to use Express Scribe.

Typist purchases the DSS Player Standard version 5 transcription kit (AS-2400)

The AS-2400 transcription kit consists of a RS28 USB foot control, headset and DSS Player Standard transcription module. This software is capable of playing .ds2 audio files from the DS-2400 recorder. It can also play audio from the Pro Series recorders (DS-3400, DS-5000, DS-5000iD) however some of the audio functionality is lost when playing through the Standard transcription module.

Dictation with Olympus DS-3400/DS-5000/DS-5000iD Mac User – Typist with Express Scribe on Windows

This is were we can take advantage of the generosity of Olympus. With each of the Pro Series recorders comes a single use licence for DSS Player Pro v5 dictation module for Windows and DSS Player Plus v7 for Mac. If the person doing the dictation has a Mac they will use the Mac licence. Meaning their Windows dictation module goes unused. The person dictating therefore has the option of giving this software (and therefore the unused Windows licence key) to his Windows based typist for him or her to use to convert the .ds2 audio from the person dictating to .dss format. The dictation module on Windows has the ability to convert .ds2 to .dss. On a Mac .ds2 can only be converted to .aif files, although .aif is a format that can be used by Express Scribe there is a large file size difference between a .ds2 file and a .aif file, this may cause a problem if emailing the file.

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