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current TTS options for Fedora-core 1

Hi Peter,

Given your requirements, I would seriously consider the software
dectalk from fonix as I believe it has french language support. The
current tcl and shared libraries which come with emacspeak have
problems with the current version of this software. I have a modified
version of the shared library which works well and is available on my
website (http://www-personal.une.edu.au/~tcross. The tcl script which
goes witht he software dectalk also has some problems. It seems the
software dectalk does not handle some of its in-line commands very
well. The speech generated when these commands are included tends to
vary in volume a lot and get very "choppy". I've been using a modified
version which has removed some of these commands that seems to work
quite well - a few minor glitches with it, but quite usable. Howver,
I'm experimenting when I get a chance to try and identify exactly
which in-line commands seem to have the largest negative impact on
speech quality and hope to have a better version available soon. 

If you don't like the dectalk express, you can always try eflite or
festival. I've found the 16k english voices for festival and flite to
be very good - expecially in the most recent versions. However, the
downsideof these speech servers is the way they are integrated into
emacspeak itself. Last time I looked, the festival support required
major modifications to the emacspeak sources and therefore, did not
work with the most recent version of emacspeak and was a little more
difficult to get working than other servers. The eflite drivers work
well and take less 'customization" to get working, but are not fully
integrated in the sense of other servers which come with emacspeak. 

Of course, my favorite is still the hardware dectalk express. I still
use this at work, while at home I use various different software
synthesizes. I did write a driver for the theta TTS from
Cepstral. However, they have now changed their API and have a new TTS
engine called swift. I'm planning on writing a driver for that and
have started putting it together, but it will be some time before I
get it completed. The Cepstral voices are quite clear and support
multiple languages, including German, French Canadian French and
Spanish. There are still some limitations with these voices and the
quality can degrade a bit when you try to run them with high speech
rates. However, at "normal" speaking rates, I think their quality is
extremely good. 



>>>>> "RAYNER" == RAYNER Peter <peter.rayner@xxxxxxxxxxx> writes:

 RAYNER> After 3.5 years I'm about to upgrade from RH7.3 to FC-1.  Why
 RAYNER> something as old as FC-1?  That's what the rest of the lab
 RAYNER> uses.  If it's unworkable I can try something newer but the
 RAYNER> support engineers would prefer I didn't.  It must just about
 RAYNER> be a FAQ to keep a table of which speech engines people have
 RAYNER> made work with various versions of the kernel, libraries,
 RAYNER> emacs and emacspeak.  I'm assuming I'll finally have to
 RAYNER> abandon viavoice, at least until/unless the new versions
 RAYNER> become available.

 RAYNER> Criteria: 1) Cost isn't an issue 2) Must support English and
 RAYNER> should support French 3) Responsiveness is more important
 RAYNER> than quality but some of the 8kHz voices I have heard were a
 RAYNER> bit too ugly.

 RAYNER> This sounds like good candidate information either for a FAQ
 RAYNER> or for Raman's "tips and tricks" site.  If people send me
 RAYNER> more general information than for my requested configuration
 RAYNER> I'll try to construct a table of the current state of play.

 RAYNER> I'm also sure I'll have some other questions as the upgrade
 RAYNER> proceeds.  regards Peter

 RAYNER> -- Peter Rayner LSCE - CEA de Saclay Orme des Merisiers,
 RAYNER> 91191 Gif/Yvette work: +33 (1) 69 08 88 11; mobile: +33 (6)
 RAYNER> 75 46 56 52; fax: +33 (1) 69 08 77 16 mail-to:
 RAYNER> peter.rayner@xxxxxxxxxxx

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