Unsupervised Learning of a Disentangled Speech Representation for Voice Conversion

Tobias Gburrek, Thomas Glarner, Janek Ebbers, Reinhold Haeb-Umbach, Petra Wagner

This paper presents an approach to voice conversion, which does neither require parallel data nor speaker or phone labels for training. It can convert between speakers which are not in the training set by employing the previously proposed concept of a factorized hierarchical variational autoencoder. Here, linguistic and speaker induced variations are separated upon the notion that content induced variations change at a much shorter time scale, i.e., at the segment level, than speaker induced variations, which vary at the longer utterance level. In this contribution we propose to employ convolutional instead of recurrent network layers in the encoder and decoder blocks, which is shown to achieve better phone recognition accuracy on the latent segment variables at frame-level due to their better temporal resolution. For voice conversion the mean of the utterance variables is replaced with the respective estimated mean of the target speaker. The resulting log-mel spectra of the decoder output are used as local conditions of a WaveNet which is utilized for synthesis of the speech waveforms. Experiments show both good disentanglement properties of the latent space variables, and good voice conversion performance.

 DOI: 10.21437/SSW.2019-15

Cite as: Gburrek, T., Glarner, T., Ebbers, J., Haeb-Umbach, R., Wagner, P. (2019) Unsupervised Learning of a Disentangled Speech Representation for Voice Conversion. Proc. 10th ISCA Speech Synthesis Workshop, 81-86, DOI: 10.21437/SSW.2019-15.

  author={Tobias Gburrek and Thomas Glarner and Janek Ebbers and Reinhold Haeb-Umbach and Petra Wagner},
  title={{Unsupervised Learning of a Disentangled Speech Representation for Voice Conversion}},
  booktitle={Proc. 10th ISCA Speech Synthesis Workshop},