Chinese Translations

There is of course huge disparity between Chinese and Western thought, customs and values.

Despite this, most subject matter can be readily translated by an experienced English - Chinese translator.

English to Chinese translation

Files for English to Chinese translation can be supplied as standard Word, PowerPoint and Excel files using the Chinese fonts that come with Windows.

This allows any user to open the files and the Chinese translation will display correctly. Some clients prefer pdfs, and for other projects where materials are to be printed or published, Chinese typesetting in graphic design files is required.Chinese translation example

The Chinese translation of English names is worthy of mention. Occasionally a literal translation of the words comprising a name will be possible.

Generally though, a Chinese translator will transliterate the name – reproduce the approximate sounds of the English name in Chinese.

There are always many Chinese character (sound) combinations possible, and therefore several different possible ‘translations’ or renderings for most names. The experienced Chinese translator will ensure the characters chosen have positive connotations and create an appropriate image on the Chinese speaker.

Chinese to English translation

There is considerable demand for our Chinese to English translation service. We handle documents and source materials of all types, including legal and technical projects.

All Chinese translations, whether English to Chinese or Chinese to English, can be supplied as a quality-assured, budget professional or certified Chinese translation.

There are a number of different systems for "translating" or rendering Chinese names into English, and translators must use the correct method. We give examples of the differences and discuss these methods in some depth in our Chinese name translation article.

Chinese Translation plus Typesetting

The latest versions of the main graphic design programs can now successfully handle Chinese fonts (double byte characters) – InDesign, Quark and Illustrator, for example. With these programs the English to Chinese translation is normally supplied as a standard design file with the Chinese text typeset and then outlined to curves to avoid potential font problems.

For other programs, the Chinese translation is normally typeset in Illustrator. Outlined graphic files for each page will be placed back in the design file to replace the English text.

A knowledge of the language is necessary for typesetting Chinese. In addition to the ability to identify and correct any character display problems, an appreciation of Chinese design aesthetics and font types and their usage is required. Chinese can be set either horizontally or, less commonly, vertically.

An English text will typically occupy more space than the equivalent Chinese translation. When using an existing English design, the typesetter will therefore typically have some leeway on point sizes, layout and white space usage. An experienced Chinese typesetter will have no trouble setting text to any layout and creating artwork that has optimal impact to the Chinese eye.

See our separate page for information on our typesetting processes, capabilities and quality control measures relating to Chinese typesetting.

Which version of Chinese?

There are several dialects of spoken Chinese. Mandarin is the principal dialect with over a billion speakers. This is generally what is meant when people refer to spoken “Chinese”.  Other major dialects include both Cantonese and Taiwanese, and there are many more.

There are two forms of written Chinese. Simplified Chinese uses a character set that has been “simplified” and is used in Mainland China, Singapore and broadly throughout South East Asia. Traditional Chinese (using the traditional Chinese characters) is used in Hong Kong and Taiwan.

Translations into Chinese are therefore either in Traditional Chinese or Simplified Chinese. Thus when people ask for a Mandarin translation or a Mandarin translator, we more technically refer to this as a Simplified Chinese translation. Similarly for a Cantonese translation or Cantonese translator, we refer to a Traditional Chinese translation.

It is vital the correct written form is used for the relevant market. Often clients will need a translation in both forms.

To obtain a quote for your Chinese translation project:

Use the buttons at the bottom of this page:

  • Instant Translation Quote for immediate pricing in most languages.
  • Written Quote for a formal quote by e-mail.
  • E-mail us your documents and/or details if you are an existing client.

Or to discuss your project, phone us on 0508 872 675 or (09) 913 5290.

An example of our Chinese translation and typesetting work:

Chinese translation & typesetting

Chinese Interpreter Service

Most Chinese interpreting assignments in New Zealand involve Mandarin as this is the most widely spoken dialect and the language widely used in formal settings. Cantonese is also required reasonably frequently, and other dialects on occasion.

We have an experienced Mandarin interpreter team, several skilled Cantonese interpreters, and interpreters in a number of other Chinese dialects. They are able to interpret in both business and community settings.

See our separate page for general information on interpreting, the services we offer and our charges relating to Chinese interpreter services.

Other Major World Languages Translated

As Arabic is the world’s fifth most widely spoken language it is unsurprising we have considerable demand for English to Arabic translation. Our Arabic to English translation service, particularly for personal documents, is also important.

Of the Indian languages, Hindi translation is most significant for us. Most requests are to translate English to Hindi with somewhat less work in the opposite direction.

We have a very experienced Spanish translator team who complete a large volume of projects requiring English to Spanish translation. The reverse direction, from Spanish to English, also attracts a large volume of work.

French translation is also constantly required. Thus the world’s most spoken languages are also our major translation languages.

Other Asian translation languages

Of the SE Asian languages, Japanese translation is second in volume after Chinese translation. We also complete numerous English to Korean translation projects, most involving typesetting.

Other languages such as Thai, Vietnamese, Malay and Indonesian are also significant.