Third International Conference on Spoken Language Processing (ICSLP 94)

Yokohama, Japan
September 18-22, 1994

A Portable Digital Speech Rate Converter and its Evaluation by Hearing-Impaired Listeners

Yoshito Nejime (1), Toshiyuki Aritsuka (1), Toshiki Imamura (2), Tohru Ifukube (2), Jun'ichi Matsushima (3)

(1) Central Research Laboratory, Hitachi Ltd., Tokyo, Japan
(2) Research Institute for Electronic Science, Hokkaido Univ., Sapporo, Japan
(3) School of Medicine, Hokkaido Univ., Sapporo, Japan

A new portable device that reduces speech speed in real time has been developed to aid hearing-impaired listeners. The device employs realtime digital signal processing to expand the time scale of the speech signal without changing the pitch. Seven out often elderly hearing-impaired listeners have shown improvements in word discrimination tests when using this speech-rate conversion. The subjects' temporal resolution showed a correlation with the observed improvement, with a coefficient value of 0.859. The results suggest that this device provides support at the cognitive level of the auditory system.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Nejime, Yoshito / Aritsuka, Toshiyuki / Imamura, Toshiki / Ifukube, Tohru / Matsushima, Jun'ichi (1994): "A portable digital speech rate converter and its evaluation by hearing-impaired listeners", In ICSLP-1994, 2055-2058.