The Perception of Two Vocal Qualities in a Synthesized Vocal Utterance: Ring and Pressed Voice


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  • Christine C. Bergan
  • Ingo R. Titze
  • Brad Story


Two vocal qualities, ring quality and pressed quality, were analyzed perceptually. Listeners were asked to rate (on a scale from 0 to 10) the “amount of ring�? in one listening and the “amount of pressedness�? in another listening. The stimulus was the synthesized utterance /ya-ya-ya-ya-ya/. In the continuum representation of ring, the skewing quotient and the cross section of the epilaryngeal tube area were systematically varied, independently and by a covariation rule. In the continuum representation of pressed, the flow amplitude and open quotient were similarly varied. Results indicated that the crossover point between ring and no ring occurred with an epilaryngeal area of around 1.0 cm2, and the crossover point between pressed and not pressed quality occurred at an open quotient of about 0.4. Fundamental frequency also had an effect on the perceptions, with a higher fundamental frequency receiving higher ratings of ring and pressed for otherwise the same parameters. Listeners demonstrated highly variable perceptions in both continua with poor intersubject, intrasubject, and intergroup reliability.

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