12th Annual Conference of the International Speech Communication Association

Florence, Italy
August 27-31. 2011

Quantitative Analysis of Tone Coarticulation in Mandarin

Hussein Hussein (1), Hansjörg Mixdorff (1), Hue San Do (1), Rüdiger Hoffmann (2)

(1) Beuth Hochschule für Technik Berlin, Germany
(2) Technische Universität Dresden, Germany

The current paper examines the effect of tone coarticulation in Mandarin on the amplitude and duration of tone commands of the Fujisaki model and whether declination needs to be taken into account when synthesizing F0 contours of Mandarin. Based on a corpus of short sentences mean parameters of the Fujisaki-model were calculated for the 15 combinations of Mandarin tones. The resulting smoothed F0 contours differ from the canonical shapes due to tonal coarticulation. Results of averaged parameters suggest that sequences of tone commands with the same polarity can usually be merged into a single tone command because their tone command amplitudes At are very similar. T2 for the first and T1 for the second command in these sequences are also very similar, so they can be set to the same value. As a consequence, tonal combinations can be interpreted as sequences of tone switches between high and low tones, considerably simplifying the modeling. It was also found that for most utterances phrase commands of magnitude Ap greater 0 occurred, indicating that the phrase component should be taken into account when analyzing and synthesizing of F0 contour of Mandarin.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Hussein, Hussein / Mixdorff, Hansjörg / Do, Hue San / Hoffmann, Rüdiger (2011): "Quantitative analysis of tone coarticulation in Mandarin", In INTERSPEECH-2011, 2041-2044.