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Re: need speech synthesizer

From:Philippe Caquant <herodote92@...>
Date:Sunday, July 18, 2004, 6:29
--- "Mark P. Line" <mark@...> wrote:
> > My problem is that when I listen to the WAV files > provided, they don't > jibe with the phonetic descriptions they give. > Obviously, my ability to > hear foreign sounds correctly is inadequate. One of > the worst problems I'm > having is the pronunciation of French 'e'. They say > to pronounce it as a > syllabic voiced velar lateral approximant like the > second "a" in > "marmalade", but that's not anything like what I > hear in the sound file.
To me, making a sound file for an isolated sound "e" makes little sense. I listened to it (there is noise in the back), but I'm not quite sure that if somebody had asked me "what letter is this ?" I would have answered "e" immediately (although the pronunciation, at secund hearing, is not bad). The description they give, using English comparisons ("like the indefinite article "a" in English with a sharper sound, or like the second a in "marmalade") sounds rather OK to me, but of course, many people will immediately say that they pronounce "a" and "marmelade" completely differently. Nevertheless, I would not say that the "e" in "deux", "second" and "beurre" is alike. They should better give sound files for these entire words, IMO. "Heure", "beurre", "soeur", "leur", "peur" are totally similar to me except for the first consonant sound. It is more open than the following. "Deux" contains a similar vocalic sound as "peu", but to me "deux" is longer and "peu" shorter. It is more closed. "Je", "ne", "le", "se" etc, contain a "e muet" (is this called a schwa ? it may be). This sound can be dropped under some conditions in spoken French. Ex: "Je le vois" can be uttered as "J'le vois" or "Je l'vois"; "Je ne le vois pas" can be uttered as "Je n'le vois pas", "J'le vois pas" (whole negation "ne" dropped), etc. ===== Philippe Caquant "High thoughts must have high language." (Aristophanes, Frogs) __________________________________ Do you Yahoo!? New and Improved Yahoo! Mail - 100MB free storage!