Objective vocal assessment and analysis
Tools for the objective assessment of voice
This is made relatively easy with Audacity, another free app.
Audacity is available for Mac OS X, Windows and Linux:
I recommend Sound Studio 4 as a paid alternative to Audacity. I prefer the editing, which I find easer. Costs around £49.99 (May 2023).
Guide to free software to evaluate vocal pitch, loudness and screen for voice disorders
The above guide shows Speech and Language Therapists how to use Audacity and Praat to record, edit and analyse voice. The software is all FREE and may be used with a reasonably priced microphone and modern PC, Mac or Linux computer.
The guide walks through:
- LOUDNESS - Sound Pressure Level (SPL)
- CPPS - Detecting voice disorder
The Microsoft Word file is for recording a service user's data, which may then be added to their case notes.
If you would like to learn more, please follow the links to tutorials by experts in the field, below.
The above PDF shows an analysis of my voice from a reading of The Rainbow Passage (Fairbanks, 1960) using Praat and the Phonanium plug-in. The use of the Rainbow Passage allows a more accurate overall pitch range and median to be calculated.
Fairbanks, G. (1960). Voice and articulation drillbook, 2nd edn. New York: Harper & Row. pp124-139.
Identifying Possible Voice Disorder with Cepstral Peak Analysis
Saunder, Brett & Eadie concluded that "…these studies support the robust nature of CPPS to detect dysphonia, including disorder status as well as perceived dysphonia, in a variety of different patient populations." (2019, p. 564)
An anagram of 'Spectrum', can be thought of as a spectrum of a spectrum. The cepstral peak prominence (CPP), or smoothed CPP (CPPS) may be calculated using a free plug-in (see below), or a paid-for plug-in by Phonanium (with more detailed statistics and graphical representations of the analysis).
A free plug-in for Praat by Elizabeth Heller Murray (2022). The plug in provides figures relating to a voice sample for CPP (Free).
Voice analysis resources
Speech, Hearing & Phonetic Sciences, UCL have free, online software, including real-time amplitude and pitch display.
See here for the links to all web-based apps.
Heller Murray, E., Chao, A., & Colletti, L. A. (2022). A Practical Guide to Calculating Cepstral Peak Prominence in Praat. Journal of Voice. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jvoice.2022.09.002
Murton, O., Hillman, R., & Mehta, D. (2020). Cepstral Peak Prominence Values for Clinical Voice Evaluation. American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, 29(3), 1596-1607. https://doi.org/10.1044/2020_AJSLP-20-00001
Sauder, C., Bretl, M., & Eadie, T. (2017). Predicting Voice Disorder Status From Smoothed Measures of Cepstral Peak Prominence Using Praat and Analysis of Dysphonia in Speech and Voice ( ADSV ). Journal of Voice, 31(5), 557-566. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jvoice.2017.01.006