Converting electronic documents to MP3 audioDocument Transcript
EasyConverter, easy to follow MP3 workflow
Making MP3 audio from an electronic input file (NIMAS, PDF, Microsoft
Word, Kurzweil, HTML, RTF, plain text, or Dtbook).
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Generalized overview of the conversion process
Step 1: Start EasyConverter
To start EasyConverter either left double-click on its icon on your Windows desktop:
or by selecting All Programs ->Dolphin –>EasyConverter ->EasyConverter 4.01 from your
Windows Start menu:
Step 2: Choose your source document
When EasyConverter’s main window appears on your screen press EasyConverter’s “Open a
document to convert” button (pictured below).
and then from the “Open” dialog box which now appears select the input file that you want to
convert to MP3 audio format.
Step 3: Choose your output format
In EasyConverter’s main window press the “Convert to MP3” button (pictured below) in order
to select MP3 as your desired output format.
and then press the “Preview MP3 output after conversion” button in the middle of the MP3 orb
in order to have EasyConverter preview your converted MP3 audio files using your computer’s
default MP3 player (usually Microsoft’s Windows Media Player). This will allow you to check
the quality of the outputted MP3 files ahead of transferring it to an MP3 hardware player (such
as an iPod), burning them to a CD, or saving them to a mass storage device such as a local
hard disk, network drive, or USB thumb drive.
Step 4: Adjust your conversion settings
In EasyConverter’s main window press the “Show settings dialog box” button (in order to set
your MP3 conversion preferences such as the text-to-speech synthesizer used to generate the
audio in your MP3 files).
In the “Dolphin EasyConverter Settings” dialog box in the settings category tree-view control
select the top-level tree-view branch called “Output” and then select its sub-category called
“MP3 General” (as pictured below).
When the “MP3 General” category is highlighted in the tree-view control you will be able to
choose how you want the MP3 audio to be created. i.e. Whether you want Dolphin
EasyConverter to create one MP3 file for the whole book, or whether you want Dolphin
EasyConverter to create one MP3 file for each chapter heading (or sub-heading) in your book.
An M3U (play list) file is also created during the conversion process.
The advantage of having EasyConverter automatically generate separate MP3 files for each
chapter heading (or sub-heading) in your book is that if you have a very large book the MP3
audio version of your book will be much more easy for students to navigate if it is broken down
into more manageable chunks of say a chapter per MP3 file. Imagine trying to navigate the
whole of “War and Peace” if it was given to you as one single audio file!
You are also able to select the audio quality of the MP3 files in this dialog box as well.
If you now select the sub-branch called “MP3 TTS” of the “Output” category in the
EasyConverter Settings dialog tree-view you will be able to select the synthetic voice used to
generate the audio in your MP3 files, as well as its speed, volume and pitch. In addition, you
will optionally be able to specify, or create from scratch, a “lexicon” (a user-definable
pronunciation dictionary for your selected text-to-speech synthesizer) to use in order to correct
any mispronunciation errors you may encounter while TTS-ing your book. (For further details
on lexicons please refer to your EasyConverter user guide).
When you have adjusted your MP3 audio conversion preferences press the “OK” button.
Step 5: Ensure “Auto Edit” is on
Back in EasyConverter’s main window press the “Turn Auto Edit on” button (in order to set
Microsoft Word as your intermediate document editor so that you can view and optionally
mark-up and adjust your NIMAS, PDF, Kurzweil, HTML, RTF, plain text, or Dtbook input file
before it’s converted into MP3 audio format.
Step 6: Start the conversion
With your main EasyConverter screen now pictured as below you are ready to start the
Simply press the “Start conversion” button to get the conversion process underway:
The conversion process stage from your original NIMAS, PDF, Kurzweil, HTML, RTF, plain
text, or Dtbook input file into EasyConverter’s intermediate Microsoft Word file format should
now start. You can monitor the progress via EasyConverter’s status bar located at the bottom
of EasyConverter’s main window.
During the conversion process the button will change to an "Abort" button. Selecting "Abort"
will cancel the current conversion.
Step 7: Check document, apply formatting, then
Microsoft Word is the intermediate document editor used by Dolphin EasyConverter. How your
intermediate document is structured will influence the number of separate MP3 files generated
by EasyConverter, i.e. the amount of individual navigation points (such as chapter headings) in
your finalized MP3 audio book.
In addition, any pictures, graphs, or diagrams in your intermediate document can also be
assigned an “Alt Text” description that will be used to aurally describe the picture, graph, or
diagram to the MP3 audio book listener.
Therefore it’s very useful to know some of the basic formatting options available in Microsoft
Word that control an MP3 book’s navigation points and also its description of images.
Below is a list of “good practice" tips to adhere to when working with EasyConverter’s
intermediate Word documents:
• Apply Microsoft Word’s built-in “Styles” to your document’s text in order to define the
individual chapter headings of your MP3 book.
• Define “Alt Text” descriptions for any images in your document that will be
of interest to the listener.
• Do not press ENTER on your keyboard lots of times to get to the top of a
new page. If you want to start a new page, use a proper page break (press
CONTROL + ENTER).
Applying heading styles
Applying a heading style means assigning a specific in-built Microsoft Word style to the current
paragraph. How this heading style appears can be defined by you, but it must be the in-built
heading style that is used. It cannot simply be the customizing of normal text with different font
You can apply a heading style to a piece of text in a number two ways: 1) through the "Styles"
task pane on Microsoft Word’s ribbon bar or 2) through a pre-defined Microsoft Word hot key.
The pre-defined Microsoft Word hot keys are:
• To apply a “Heading 1” style press: CONTROL+ALT+1
• To apply a “Heading 2” style press: CONTROL+ALT+2
• To apply a “Heading 3” style press: CONTROL+ALT+3
Applying “Alt Text” descriptions
As mentioned previously, any pictures, graphs, or diagrams in your intermediate document can
also have an “Alt Text” description defined for them that will be used to aurally describe the
picture, graph, or diagram to the MP3 book listener.
To apply an “Alt Text” description to an image in your intermediate Word document right-click
on the image and select the context-menu option “Format Picture”:
Next select the “Alt Text” property sheet in the “Format Picture” dialog box and in the
“Alternative Text” edit area type in the text description that you want announced in the MP3
book for this image.
Finally, when you have applied heading styles to those items of text in your intermediate Word
document that require it, quit Word (press ALT+F4).
Step 8: Wait for the conversion to complete
Now wait for the conversion process to complete (and your computer’s default MP3 player
software to load in order to “Preview” your finalized MP3 book). You can monitor the
conversion progress on EasyConverter’s status bar, which is located at the bottom-left of the
EasyConverter main window.
Note for large books, say over 500 pages, this may take some time. So please be patient.
Step 9: Preview the MP3 book in your computer’s
default MP3 player software
Once the conversion process has completed and EasyConverter has automatically launched
your computer’s default MP3 player software, use your computer’s MP3 player software to
review the contents of the finalized MP3 book.
If you are unsatisfied with the contents of your MP3 book then quit your computer’s default
MP3 player software and click on the “Open the document for editing” button right in the center
of the main EasyConverter user interface.
This will launch Microsoft Word so that you can re-edit your intermediate Word document and
correct any errors, or apply any formatting or “Alt Text” descriptions that you want (see Step 7
for further help).
Once you have corrected any issues that you found in your intermediate Word document then
quit Microsoft Word (press ALT+F4) and then press EasyConverter’s “Start conversion” button
in order to create an updated version of your MP3 book. Now go back to Step 8 of the
Alternatively, if you are satisfied with the contents of your MP3 book then quit your computer’s
default MP3 player software and move on to Step 10 of the conversion workflow, “Save your
converted MP3 book”.
Step 10: Save your converted MP3 book
Now that you are satisfied with the output of your conversion it is time to save a copy of your
MP3 book for distribution to your students.
To do this press the "Save MP3 to output folder after conversion" button in the MP3 orb of
EasyConverter’s main window in order to choose on your hard disk the folder in which you
want to save the converted book:
A dialog box similar to the one pictured below should appear. The "Select Distribution Path:"
dialog box even has a "Make New Folder" button in it so that you can press it in order to create
a new sub-folder that you can name as you see fit. i.e. The new folder name that you create
can contain perhaps the grade number and the novel name of your finalized MP3 book.
Once this is done you can press the "OK" button to copy the finalized MP3 book into the newly
created folder (or else the folder that you have selected in the distribution path tree-view).
Make a note of the full path where you have saved the finalized MP3 book files.
Alternatively, pressing the "Create CD from MP3 output after conversion" button in the MP3
orb of EasyConverter’s main user interface will bring up a dialog box titled “EasyConverter
create MP3 CD” that asks whether the blank CD/DVD currently in your CD/DVD burner drive is
to be burned is an audio or data CD/DVD.
If the “Create Data CD/DVD” radio control is selected in this dialog box (which is its default
setting) then EasyConverter will attempt to burn your MP3 audio files to a blank CD/DVD as
soon as you press the “OK” button in this dialog box.
If however you select the “Create Audio CD “ radio control instead then your MP3 audio files
will be burned in an audio-only format that makes it compatible with a music system that does
not support MP3. i.e. EasyConverter will burn a regular audio CD version of your MP3 book.
Step 11: Save your project file
If you want to keep this conversion and all of its settings, then press the "Save project" button
in EasyConverter’s main user interface.
Saving an EasyConverter project files means that a re-conversion of the original source
document does not have to be performed in the future if you want to convert this same
document into other alternative formats (such as large print, or Braille), or make minor
adjustments to the intermediate Word file for this project.
A saved project can later be re-opened by pressing the “Open Project” button.
You have now finished the conversion process. Enjoy your MP3 book!