HearThis, Audacity, and Scripture App Builder

I am new to HearThis and am unsure if it is the correct software for what we hope to accomplish. We want to record Scripture from a Paratext project, then be able to edit it in Audacity (to clean up the files) and eventually publish it with Scripture App Builder. If I understand correctly, HearThis can export to Scripture App builder. However, what I am unsure of is whether HearThis exported FLAC files (to maintain high quality) which are then edited in Audacity can then be brought into Scripture App builder with the correct codes for the audio and text to sync. I’ve looked for documentation but have not found any.

Faith Comes by Hearing has a standing offer to anyone using HearThis, where they will do the audio cleanup for you, add sound effects if you want them, etc. There is even an automated process by which this gets into SAB and onto the app stores. All for free.

If you really want to do it yourself, I don’t see any problems but I don’t feel qualified to address whether there are any obstacles. You may get a more thorough answer from someone after the weekend.

Audacity can open FLAC files, and export various qualities of MP3 for SAB usage. We export at 64kbps at constant rate for SAB.

HearThis will generate the SAB timing files for you if you use that export option. You could generate the timing files using HearThis and still export the audio as FLAC files and clean them up in Audacity, but if your clean up involves changing the duration of clips (e.g., to normalize the pauses), that would throw things off. In that case, you would probably need to use Aeneas (inside SAB) to generate the timing information. For most languages that use Roman script, Aeneas works very well. It can also work well for other scripts, but it depends (and it might involve more setup work).
Even if you do think you have what it takes to do this all yourself, I would recommend that you at least talk to FCBH so that you can get some tips and maybe understand what it would look like if you later discover that you’re in over your head and need help.
At this point, I’m assuming that you plan to do a single-voice narrated recording. If that is not correct, and you plan to do a dramatized (multi-voice) recording, then there are some additional things to talk about.

If FCBH’s standing offer to those using HearThis just for a completed New Testament like their recording translated Scripture is or would they do just a book of Scripture or several books?

Yes, FCBH will use HearThis recordings, NT, OT, portions. They have a special license agreement that they would draft to use the recording. The Getting Started Page has a section that discusses how to initiate a partnership with FCBH. We’re working on adding more details to that section, but I think this at least answers your question.

Thanks, Tom, for your very helpful explanation. Yes, the local community leaders have chosen to do a single voice recording for Psalms and Proverbs. (FCBH did a multi-voice recording of the NT years ago). We just returned from a remote location where my wife trained a couple of local people to do the HearThis recordings. We had a number of technical difficulties. One of the most troubling was the computer cutting off connection to the Zoom H2n external mic every verse or two. We eventually figured out that we needed to disable not only the internal mic (which we’d already done), but also an internal stereo mixer, which on that Toshiba computer was also one of the options for mic input. Once we disabled that the recording went well.

Thank you for posting about your experience. I’m glad you figured out the problem, and I hope others who have a similar situation might be helped by seeing what you posted. (Makes me wonder if HearThis could maybe help users by detecting other available inputs and suggesting that they be disabled…)