ASA 128th Meeting - Austin, Texas - 1994 Nov 28 .. Dec 02

5pSP10. Control experiments on the frequency scale of speech intonation.

Dik J. Hermes

H. H. Rump

Inst. for Percept. Res. IPO, P.O. Box 513, 5600 MB Eindhoven, The Netherlands

According to Hermes and Van Gestel [J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 90, 97--102 (1991)], prominences of accent-lending pitch movements in different registers are equal when their excursion sizes are equal on the ERB-rate scale. A reanalysis of their experiments showed that an octave relationship between the high pitch levels in the different registers may have been crucial. In order to test whether this factor influenced the outcome of their experiments, adjustment experiments were performed with stimuli in different low and high registers. The results, supporting the ERB-rate scale hypothesis of Hermes and Van Gestel, showed that the octave relationship had no systematic influence on the results. In an additional experiment, stimuli were resynthesized from a male and a female voice in order to test the effect of the speaker's natural pitch range. The male and female stimuli gave about the same results. In sum, the effect of pitch excursion on prominence is very robust. An unexpected finding was that, on average, the excursions of the pitch movements in the high register were about 0.15 E (0.5--1 semitone) larger than those of the pitch movements in the low register when lending equal prominence.