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Enhancing formant information in spectrographic display of speech
Research Area: Uncategorized Year: 2020
Type of Publication: In Proceedings  
Authors: B. Yegnanarayana, Anand Joseph Xavier M., Vishala Pannala  
Formants are resonances of the time varying vocal tract system, and their characteristics are reflected in the response of the system for a sequence of impulse-like excitation sequence originated at the glottis. This paper presents a method to enhance the formants information in the display of spectrogram of the speech signal, especially for high pitched voices. It is well known that in the narrowband spectrogram, the presence of pitch harmonics masks the formant information, whereas in the wideband spectrogram, the formant regions are smeared. Using single frequency filtering (SFF) analysis, we show that the wideband equivalent SFF spectrogram can be modified to enhance the formant information in the display by improving the frequency resolution. For this, we obtain two SFF spectrograms by using single frequency filtering of the speech signal at two closely spaced roots on the real axis in the z-plane. The ratio or difference of the two SFF spectrograms is processed to enhance the formant information in the spectrographic display. This will help in tracking rapidly changing formants and in resolving closely spaced formants. The effect is more pronounced in the case of high-pitched voices, like female and children speech.
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