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  Real Speech vs. Artificial Test Signals
HEAD Press Release Herzogenrath, October 31, 2012
Real Speech vs. Artificial Test Signals
Artificial voice and speech-like signals according to ITU-T P.50 and P.501 have been used in telephonometry for many years. While artificial voice e.g. has the advantages of being more easily generated and having a smaller variability, real speech has its advantages too, for example:
Phones and systems in real life are confronted with real speech
Can be used independent of codec and signal processing
„Future-proof“ with regard to future algorithms based on speech characteristics
Subjective assessment possible
Test signals for subjective and objective tests identical
ITU-T P.501 has therefore been revised and extended by real speech testing procedures including the corresponding speech databases.
Consequently, more and more telecom standards are requiring the use of real speech in addition to or instead of artificial signals. E.g., the latest version of TS 26.132 which is the basis for GCF certification of mobile phones now includes real speech.
Speech signals provide adequate properties for evaluation of long term characteristics.
Further investigation on use and applicability of the signals for the evaluation of short term characteristics is needed.
Adaptation of testing methods and requirements to the new test signals is required.
Lombard effect needs to be considered.
The use of speech signals will avoid any discussions about the validity of the test signal for specific terminals or algorithms.
Comparison speech vs. artificial signals
Steffen Scholz
HEAD acoustics GmbH
Ebertstr. 30a,
D-52134 Herzogenrath
Phone: +49 (0) 2407 577 744
Fax: +49 (0) 2407 577 99
About HEAD acoustics GmbH:
HEAD acoustics was founded in 1986 and has been involved in noise and vibration, electroacoustics and voice quality testing since its inception. HEAD acoustics is based in Herzogenrath, Germany, with affiliates in USA, Japan and France as well as a world-wide network of representatives. The Telecom Division of HEAD acoustics manufactures telecom test equipment and provides consulting services in the field of speech and audio quality. Moreover, HEAD acoustics closely co-operates with DECT Forum, ETSI, ITU-T, TIA and other standardization bodies with regard to the development of quality standards for voice transmission and speech communication. In many partnership projects, HEAD acoustics has proven its competence and capabilities in conducting tests and optimizing communication products with respect to speech and audio quality under end-to-end as well as mouth-to-ear scenarios.
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