🎤 📖 Transcription features for NeoVim
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Transcribe is a NeoVim plugin aimed at helping humans to transcribe recondings to text.

Warning : this project is still in a very early stage of development. It's not feature complete yet and you can expect breaking changes.

Table of contents


  • Control media playback directly from NeoVim rather than juggling with another software in the background and using media keys
    • Load media (local file or remote URL), play and pause
    • Set playback speed
    • Seek forward or backward
  • Time code management:
    • Insert current time position in the buffer
    • Directly go to time code under the cursor / on the current line
  • Sync mode:
    • Always keep the playback in sync with your position in the file, using time codes.


Using vim-plug:

Plug 'gaalcaras/transcribe.nvim', { 'do': 'make install' }

Transcribe relies on mpv and python-mpv for media playback. Run make install to make sure they are both installed, or install them manually. Don't forget to run :UpdateRemotePlugins and restart NeoVim to properly install or update the plugin.

Quick start

This is a quick introduction to the plugin. Please read the documentation for an exhaustive overview of the plugin.

First things first: load a local file or an URL.

:TranscribeAudio https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o8NPllzkFhE

Playback should start automatically. Transcribe will then load commands and mappings.

Playback control

  • Pause or resume playback using the command :TranscribePause
  • Increase/decrease playback speed by 0.1 increments with :TranscribeSpeedInc/:TranscribeSpeedDec or directly set it with :TranscribeSpeedSet 0.8
  • Seek forward/backward by 15 seconds increments with :TranscribeSeekForward/:TranscribeSeekBackward or directly set it with : :TranscribeSeek -34

Progress and time codes

  • See where you are in media playback with :TranscribeProgress
  • Jump to time code with :TranscribeGoto 00:34:23
  • Toggle sync mode on/off with :TranscribeSyncMode


Mapping Action Mode Plug
<leader><space> Pause/Resume Normal <plug>(transcribe-toggle-pause)
<C-space> Pause/Resume Insert <plug>(transcribe-toggle-pause)
<leader>k Increase speed by 0.1 Normal <plug>(transcribe-speed-inc)
<C-k> Increase speed by 0.1 Insert <plug>(transcribe-speed-inc)
<leader>j Decrease speed by 0.1 Normal <plug>(transcribe-speed-dec)
<C-j> Decrease speed by 0.1 Insert <plug>(transcribe-speed-dec)
<leader>l Seek forward by 15s Normal <plug>(transcribe-seek-forward)
<C-l> Seek forward by 15s Insert <plug>(transcribe-seek-forward)
<leader>h Seek backward by 15s Normal <plug>(transcribe-seek-backward)
<C-h> Seek backward by 15s Insert <plug>(transcribe-seek-backward)
<leader>p See playback progress Normal <plug>(transcribe-progress)
<C-t> Insert current time position Insert <plug>(transcribe-timepos-get)
<leader>gw Go to time code under cursor Normal <plug>(transcribe-timepos-curword)
<leader>gl Go to first time code on current line Normal <plug>(transcribe-timepos-curline)
<C-l> Go to first time code on current line Insert <plug>(transcribe-timepos-curline)
<leader>ms Toggle sync mode on/off Normal <plug>(transcribe-sync-mode)


As far as I know, no plugin implements transcription features properly in vim or NeoVim, probably because the intersection between vim users and transcription work is very thin.

While I have found some projects with the same goal as Transcribe, they all relied on mpv's slave mode. Even though slave mode is hackable and fun, I found it unreliable when used repeatedly. NeoVim remote plugin allows Transcribe to communicate with mpv asynchronously through the API.