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Identification of high-pass filtered male, female, and child vowels: The use of high-frequency cues



Identification of high-pass filtered male, female, and child vowels: The use of high-frequency cues



Journal of the Acoustical Society of America 137(4): 1971-1982



Vowels are characteristically described according to low-frequency resonance characteristics, which are presumed to provide the requisite information for identification. Classically, the study of vowel perception has focused on the lowest formant frequencies, typically F1, F2, and F3. Lehiste and Peterson [Phonetica 4, 161-177 (1959)] investigated identification accuracy of naturally produced male vowels composed of various amounts of low- and high-frequency content. Results showed near-chance identification performance for vowel segments containing only spectral information above 3.5 kHz. The authors concluded that high-frequency information was of minor importance for vowel identification. The current experiments report identification accuracy for high-pass filtered vowels produced by two male, two female, and two child talkers using both between- and within-subject designs. Identification performance was found to be significantly above chance for the majority of vowels even after high-pass filtering to remove spectral content below 3.0-3.5 kHz. Additionally, the filtered vowels having the highest fundamental frequency (child talkers) often had the highest identification accuracy scores. Linear discriminant function analysis mirrored perceptual performance when using spectral peak information between 3 and 12 kHz.

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Accession: 058039544

Download citation: RISBibTeXText

PMID: 25920848

DOI: 10.1121/1.4916195


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