Chinese Translation Services

China: It is the world’s second-largest country by population and fourth-largest by area, and also boasts one of the globe’s fastest-growing economies. While ongoing debates surround the precise figure, nobody can deny that more people speak Chinese than any other language – around 16% of the world’s population! Providing you with the opportunity to liaise and do business with well over a billion people, Chinese translation and interpretation services are in demand. Yet, choosing linguists with proven expertise is crucial with a language – or group of languages – as complex and nuanced as English and Chinese. 

There are over 300 living languages in regular use across mainland China, but Mandarin has significantly more speakers. In fact, with 1.1 billion speakers in China alone, Mandarin is the most widely used language on the planet. Like many other Asian languages, Mandarin is a tonal language. This makes it particularly difficult for speakers of European languages to learn. In fact, Mandarin uses five different tones, which means it is far too easy to slip up and change the entire meaning of your sentence simply with a slight error in pronunciation. When it comes to Chinese interpreting services, you are always in safe hands with Capital Linguists.

In a country covering no less than 3.7 million square miles, it should come as no surprise that there is an astonishing range of dialects, regional differences, and cultural language varieties. The most widely used Chinese language is undoubtedly Mandarin followed by Cantonese, spoken in large areas around Hong Kong and Macau, as well as other parts of South China. English to Chinese translation requests are almost always English into Mainland Mandarin (simplified Chinese), English into Hong Kong Cantonese (traditional Chinese for Hong Kong), or English into Taiwanese Mandarin (traditional Chinese for Taiwan).

You would be forgiven for wondering if Mandarin and Cantonese were simply Chinese regional variations. In fact, they are different enough to be considered completely different languages. While Mandarin speakers may be able to decipher written Cantonese, they would need help understanding its spoken form.

Here are some of the key differences between the two main Chinese languages:

•            They have their own distinct vocabulary and grammar.

•            Cantonese uses traditional Chinese characters, whereas Mandarin uses a simplified version.

•            Spoken Mandarin uses five tones. Cantonese, meanwhile, has nine.

•            The two languages operate with different word orders: In Mandarin, the correct order is “subject, adverb, verb”, whereas in Cantonese, the order should be “subject, verb, adverb”.

When it comes to choosing a reliable, efficient, and specialist Chinese translation service, finding linguists who understand the tonal system as well as master the 5,000+ characters used commonly can be something of a challenge. At Capital Linguists, we pride ourselves on the high quality of our gifted interpreters and translators. You might be wondering how we manage to retain the very highest standards in the translation industry. Well, we incorporate regular and directed professional development for all our linguists. In addition to this, all our professionals are trained to the highest academic standards. This means we can guarantee an exceptionally well-crafted final result for our clients.

We provide the following services for Chinese-to-English and English-to-Chinese translation and interpretation:

•            Document translation

•            Subtitling

•            Transcreation

•            Website Localization

•            Voiceovers

•            Conference Interpretation and Interpreting Equipment

Document translation

Chinese document translation involves translating written content from Chinese into English and vice versa, paying close attention to detail, nuance, tone and register. Linguists providing quality Chinese translation services must be experts in translation with advanced degrees and many years of real-world experience.

Of course, document translation in the language pair of Chinese and English requires an in-depth knowledge of written Chinese and English. In English, the simplest language unit is the word, which is joined together with other words to form complete sentences. In Chinese, the simplest unit is a character. Each character is represented by one distinct symbol with its own meaning. Once a document has been translated, it requires careful proofreading and editing. That’s why both translators and editors work on all projects. This ensures a flawless and authentic final product, matching the text’s purpose and type.


Creating subtitles from one language to another is a specialist discipline that requires the linguist to find the most concise way to convey the original message in the target language – Chinese or English. This language pair brings the added complexity of using different scripts; the physical constraints of the screen also play a role in the linguist’s choice of word or phrase. Capital Linguists‘ subtitling translators are equipped with various techniques that enable them to convey the intended message succinctly and with accuracy.


Transcreation is an important part of the Chinese translation services we provide. The process of carefully and creatively transferring the Chinese or English language and their entire cultural, social, and historic worlds into another entirely different language and cultural world is no easy feat! References that may be obvious to a Chinese audience are transposed into the target culture so that they are easily recognizable to the new audience in the same way.

Chinese culture is a world apart from that of the United States. Many aspects of Chinese life would raise an eyebrow to an American visitor, such as disagreeing with a compliment or spitting in the street (it’s seen as a hygienic way of cleansing impurities from the body rather than something to be frowned upon).

Transcreation’s purpose is not only to maintain the core message or narrative but to present it in a more appealing and culturally tasteful way, considering the audience to whom the message will be presented.

Website Localization

Website localization and transcreation share many features, and both consider how best to present content to local users. The website should appeal to its audience in terms of layout, tone, design, and cultural preferences. This isn’t just for aesthetic purposes; website localization can also directly impact your marketing strategy by ensuring you’re in line with your potential customers’ cultural expectations. Website localization transposes your site’s image and objective in Chinese and English and optimizes its relevance to online users in the target country.


We also carry out many voiceover projects as part of our Chinese translation services. This work entails recording translations of oral Chinese content in English – and vice versa. This isn’t just for movies; voiceover work can be done in any genre, including interviews, documentaries, and newsreels. Voiceovers avoid the need for subtitles and instead enable listeners to hear the recording in their own language, whether that’s English or Chinese. Because Chinese is a tonal language, this requires skilled and highly experienced linguists and voiceover artists.

Conference Interpretation and Interpreting Equipment

Capital Linguists provides Chinese interpreting services worldwide, either in-person or virtually. Interpretation is done in real-time, whether at a conference, a meeting, a summit, or a training program. Our interpreters use the latest interpreting equipment, enabling all listeners to access the same English or Chinese interpretation simultaneously. Capital Linguists can also provide this service via a platform such as Zoom. Whether the speaker is Chinese or English, our team of expert interpreters ensures the language isn’t a barrier to your understanding.

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