Andrew A. Catellier; Stephen D. Voran

Abstract: The systems used for public safety speech communications must be intelligible. It is also desirable that they transmit secondary information, such as the attributes of a speaker's voice. This secondary information can allow a user to identify the speaker and his or her emotional state. Testing speech communications systems for the delivery of intelligible speech is common. Testing for human perception of the delivery of this secondary information is less common, though some prior work has been done. Building on this prior work, we describe a set of controlled laboratory listening experiments. These experiments characterize the relationships between speech intelligibility, speaker identification, and the detection of dramatized urgency in a speaker's voice across a range of simulated speech processing conditions. The experiment results indicate that for the speech processing conditions considered here, detection of dramatized urgency is the most robust property, speaker identification is less robust, and speech intelligibility is the least robust.


Keywords: human listening tests; intelligible speech; speaker identification; speaker stress detection; speaker urgency detection; speech transmission system; subjective speech quality tests

For technical information concerning this report, contact:

Andrew A. Catellier
Institute for Telecommunication Sciences
(303) 497-4951

To request a reprint of this report, contact:

Lilli Segre, Publications Officer
Institute for Telecommunication Sciences
(303) 497-3572

Disclaimer: Certain commercial equipment, components, and software may be identified in this report to specify adequately the technical aspects of the reported results. In no case does such identification imply recommendation or endorsement by the National Telecommunications and Information Administration, nor does it imply that the equipment or software identified is necessarily the best available for the particular application or uses.

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