FAQ - Translate@Home (T@H)

This FAQ is about using Translate@Home for remote simultaneous interpretation. See the FAQ overview if you have questions about other topics.

General Questions

Should I use Translate@Home?

This depends on a number of things:

  • Costs, health & safety: T@H doesn’t require interpreters to travel.
  • Ease of use, deployment: T@H doesn’t require translator booths and in depth technical knowledge. It can be set up quickly.
  • Production requirements: Don’t expect T@H to be on par with a multilingual production on site. If you need audio of the highest quality or a separate mix per audio channel, you should choose an on-site production with an SRT multi-track or RTMP multi-channel broadcast.
  • Audio quality: With T@H, the translated audio quality depends on the connection and equipment of your interpreters (see our requirements and best practices for interpreters).
  • Number of languages: T@H supports any number of languages. With a multilingual broadcast you are limited by the number of tracks or channels that your encoder supports.

How many languages are possible?

Clevercast T@H doesn’t impose a limit. The number of languages allowed depends on your plan.

How do viewers choose their language ?

You embed Clevercast Player on your website(s) or third-party platform. The embedded player will automatically show all available languages through a dropdown menu (headphone button). Your viewers can use it to select their preferred language. This works on all (modern) browsers and devices (Android, iOS).

What are the requirements for interpreters?

They must be able to send the audio stream to Clevercast without much distortion or packet loss. This can roughly be translated into the following requirements:

  • A good computer and headset.
  • A bandwidth of at least 5 Mbps up and down, and no excessive packet round-trip time. If packets arrive too late, the audio will be dropped or distorted.
  • A wired connection to the internet! Even a good wireless connection with plenty of bandwidth may still cause audio distortion.

For more info, see our guidelines for interpreters. Interpreters should also follow our best practices.

Can an interpreter use WiFi?

Not if you can avoid it. Even if it works during testing, it may still cause distorted audio during the live event.

How can I ensure that an interpreter comes through with sufficient audio quality?

Do sufficient testing and listen to the translations. As an event manager, you should make sure that each interpreter can test in a situation that matches the live event as much as possible.

What kind of broadcast is required?

T@H requires an RTMP or SRT broadcast to Clevercast containing a single video and audio stream. This can be sent with any encoder, in-browser studio or third-party solution that supports RTMP or SRT broadcasting (eg. vMix, Zoom).

We strongly recommend using a framerate of 25 fps and keyframe interval of 2 seconds (Clevercast will convert your broadcast to this anyway). See our broadcast guidelines.

Our ingest servers are located in Europe. If you want to send a 1080p broadcast from another continent, make sure to use SRT. If you can’t, you will probably need a local ingest hub.

Can you provide / recommend interpreters ?

Currently not. Our clients hire the interpreters, we usually don’t know who they are hiring. What’s mainly important is that an interpreter has good equipment (headset, computer) and a good internet connection (with an ethernet cable, no wifi).

Experience with Remote Simultaneous Interpretation (RSI) is a plus, but it doesn’t matter if an interpreter has experience with Clevercast or another RSI solution. Our Translate@Home interface is very easy to use, so an interpreter should be able to get started straight away.

Translate@Home Usage and Features

Can translated audio streams contain the floor audio?

Yes. Clevercast allows the event manager to modify the floor audio volume in the translated audio streams. To do this, press the ‘Manage Language Rooms‘ button on the event page and use the volume slider.

We recommend keeping it very low (1-3%) or turning it off. Since the volume of each speaker (in the floor) and interpreter may differ, this is very difficult to fine-tune. If the background volume is set too high, it can be very hard to understand some translations.

Note: if the live translations contain background volume, it will also be present in the recording. Clevercast records the outgoing streams (not the incoming streams).

Does Clevercast T@H allow multiple translators for the same language?

Yes, up to 5 interpreters can be connected to the same language room and use it to translate. They can communicate with each other and event managers via text chat.

What if different languages are spoken in the floor audio ?

When there are multiple languages spoken in the floor audio, this is usually resolved by naming the default language ‘Original’ and creating a language room for each translation.

For example, in case of a conference with English and Spanish speakers, your set up could be like this:

  1. default language: ‘Original’. This contains the floor audio.
  2. language room: ‘English’. While the language in the floor audio is English, the interpreter mutes herself and viewers hear the floor audio at full volume. When the interpreter is unmuted, viewers hear the English translation.
  3. language room: ‘Spanish’. While the language in the floor audio is Spanish, the interpreter mutes herself and viewers hear the floor audio at full volume. When the interpreter is unmuted, viewers hear the Spanish translation.

If necessary, you can embed the player with a default language of your choice, by adding the ‘audio_default’ option to the embed code. When someone opens the player for the first time, he will hear the selected language.

Can interpreters listen to each other?

Yes, Translate@Home’s interpreter relay feature makes it possible to any translation in real time, and use it as the source of another translation.

Can I broadcast a translation to another platform?

Clevercast lets you simulcast a combination of the video stream and any translation to single-language platforms via RTMP (eg. to YouTube, Facebook, Twitter).

Can Clevercast record the translations and use them for Video on-Demand?

Yes. See the recording and Video on-Demand hosting FAQ.

Other questions?

FAQ Overview