Talkers produce more pronounced amplitude modulations when speaking in noise


Speakers adjust their voice when talking in noise (known as Lombard speech), facilitating speech comprehension. Recent neurobiological models of speech perception emphasize the role of amplitude modulations in speech-in-noise comprehension, helping neural oscillators to “track” the attended speech. This study tested whether talkers produce more pronounced amplitude modulations in noise. Across four different corpora, modulation spectra showed greater power in amplitude modulations below 4 Hz in Lombard speech compared to matching plain speech. This suggests that noise-induced speech contains more pronounced amplitude modulations, potentially helping the listening brain to entrain to the attended talker, aiding comprehension.

The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, 143(2), EL121-EL126, doi:10.1121/1.5024404
Hans Rutger Bosker
Hans Rutger Bosker
Assistant Professor

My research interests include speech perception, audiovisual integration, and prosody.