Re: I take it there have been no improvements to the flawed espeak ng in 2017.4?

Sharni-Lee Ward

I don't have any decent microphones, or even a draft ready to record as
yet. I use NVDA to read the following: drafts of my original stories,
drafts of my fanfictions, others' fanfictions on various archive sites,
emails, posts on Tumblr, stories on Tumblr, forum posts, Skype
conversations and other such blocks of text. I have long since become
used to how the speech sounds with Espeak, and my imagination does the
rest. The voice doesn't vary, sure, but there's nothing I can do about
that so I don't complain about it.

I don't know whether you were rude to me because I was snappy in
previous messages or you just decided to insult writing you'd never even
seen because you don't like me for some reason, but either way, it was
uncalled-for, and I do not appreciate it. I would also far rather just
be able to press "say-all" and read than buy half a dozen programs and
pieces of equipment and spend inordinate amounts of time recording, even
longer if I'm being a decent human being and considering the needs of
the people with whom I share my living space. However possible it may
be, it's not something to be expected of anyone who has a life, and a
day job, and writes for a hobby, which although not my goal, is the
situation most of my friends and the authors of my favourite stories are in.

On 26/03/2018 12:47 PM, Shaun Everiss wrote:
Well I read a book thata library put in a tts voice, realspeak daniel
I think.

Now I don't mind the book was interesting, and was a 2 hour long book
but its just not the same as a real narator.

Saying that, could you an unknown author make a book well I think you

I mean you have musicians make music without a recording studio just
their hardware.

So a computer or recorder, a good microphone and some sound
suppression and good recording software will do.

Now if you can read your book, then its possible to make a straight
mp3, maybe even daisy recording easily enough.

Hosting it if you have the space, maybe even publishing it yourself
and if thats all you want to do, so be it.

Ofcause your crappy home quality stuff may not be as good as the pro
stuff depending on what you have.

A good microphone, and some software if all that is is you reading and
maybe something to clear out the junkyness will do.

You probably could make something in goldwave, balabolka, or even
audacity to be honest.

Here's the thing, you need to read your book back to the recorder in a
natural non crappy way.

Firstly, reading with speech is hopeless speech means you need to
listen to it, then read it I have tried its totally useless I was
never good at it.

Assuming you can read braille have it transcribed to braille assuming
you have the ability to print it or display it means you have a half
decent chance of reading the book but if like me you are not a fast
reader at all and are not used to read and speak at the same time its
going to be hard.

The easiest way is to employ a reader to read your book for you from
either the document or a printed material.

Weather thats fine if someone does it to your recorder or a
professional recording is up to you.

If you can afford the expensive software, maybe even reeper does this
for you and a mixer or something and can spend days or the time to
clear all the delays out then, maybe you have a chance in hell of
actually making it work.

But is it worth hiring all that out or doing it yourself to publish
your probably crappy excuse  for a book.

Now its different if you do it in text or digital, make cash, have it
published by a mainstream publisher, have it printed, get cash and
royalties and then you either get it done by others or yourself.

But unless you are jonothan mosen or those tuys from librivox I
wouldn't even try it.

Even so the stuff from librivox is not professional quality by any means.

And thats only the tip of the iceberg rights, publishers and all the
issues with publishing mainstream if you go that rout.

Those guys are finickity about what they actually accept.

Now if you want to know, is it possible then yes it is.

It also depends what you have allready.

I have goldwave, several ok cheap to medium microphones, goldwave,
virtual recorder, audacity, sets of headphones, 2 field sony recorders
that will do just that, and sound effects.

What do I know, I can record.

Can I mix, a little with soundrecorder but not much.

Can I change a file's properties, probably.

I can't host, but even so I have enough for a home made book maybe if
I ever published one.

But there would be background noise, I havn't bothered with any actual
training as such but I do have enough for a unprofessional raw piece
of crap something, but I probably wouldn't get much of a living from it.

And thats another thing, take all those fees and such and authors even
those in mainstream are lucky to even make cash on things, unless you
are lucky and you may get lucky a lot or never again.

On 26/03/2018 8:38 a.m., Sharni-Lee Ward wrote:
Gee, I never thought of that! Are all my favourite fanfictions
audiobooks? Are all the smalltime authors whose books I read now able
to afford to make their works audiobooks? Are Tumblr writers who have
created fictional works on the spur of the moment able to access such
resources now? Can I, an as-yet unpublished author, miraculously turn
my shoddy early drafts into pleasant-to-hear audiobooks?

No? Didn't think so. Also audiobooks are stupidly expensive and
sometimes the narration leaves much to be desired. Espeak was doing
just fine before. I could use my imagination to do the work it
couldn't, and maxed inflection made that easier. Sure, if I was using
a sapi voice, or Vocaliser, I'd fall asleep fast, because there's.
No. Inflection. In. Those. Voices. So. They. Sound. Really. Dull.
And. Uninterested.

On 26/03/2018 5:08 AM, Lino Morales wrote:
This is what talking books are for. Regardless of what synth I use.
You realize bla hearing a book ready by a speech synth would be?
Boring. It would put me to sleep.

Lino Morales

From: Sharni-Lee Ward<>
Sent: Sunday, March 25, 2018 2:15 AM
Subject: Re: [nvda] I take it there have been no improvements to the
flawed espeak ng in 2017.4?

Okay, I installed NVDA 2018.1, after creating a portable copy in case
it became too much to bear.

I don't like Eloquence because it isn't as crisp as Espeak. I have
compared it to A.M radio in the past, and Espeak to FM/CD Quality
sound. Also, it has only eight variants as opposed to Espeak's
forty-something (I just realised my lovingly customised alternate
female variants have somehow been broken by more recent changes which
makes me sad, but I usually stick with Linda anyway).

It's still doing the things that annoyed me in December, but I'm
willing to try and see if I get used to them.

I don't expect a program to be perfect. I don't expect a synth to be
perfect. I would like to hope that people don't break something that
was perfectly all right in a previous version, however.

And as for inflection, I have it set to 100% (GAH, it does the thing
with percent....), which makes Eloquence sound overly chipper,
another reason I don't enjoy that synth as much. By flat, I mean the
voice does not use perceptible inflection in the cases of question
marks, commas and exclamation points. This should not be something a
blind user has to put up with when it comes to synthesised voice. How
is one supposed to know if the statement is yelled or spoken calmly
if the voice doesn't give it away? How emotionally invested can they
be in a story if there is no noticeable inflection for something as
basic as exclamations and question marks?

On 25/03/2018 4:54 PM, Gene wrote:
I need to correct one statement.  You can't, as it appears, change
inflection in Eloquence with NVDA.  I don't know what you consider
flat.  But if you give Eloquence a chance, you may find that the
amount of inflection it uses is not bothersome to you. You may want
an exaggerated amount of inflection.  I don't know how you have
E-Speak set.  But you may find that, if you give Eloquence a chance
and get used to it, you may find it generally superior over time.

----- Original Message -----
From: Gene<>
Sent: Sunday, March 25, 2018 12:50 AM
Subject: Re: [nvda] I take it there have been no improvements to the
flawed espeak ng in 2017.4?

Also, what's wrong with Eloquence?  Have you tried it  And as I
recall, you can adjust inflection with it.  Don't use the Brittish
English voice.  It's obviously programmed by Americans amateurishly
trying to imitate a Brittish accent.  Use the default American
English.  It pronounces a great many more words correctly compared
with e-speak.  And I use it very well with the NVDA speech
dictionary.  Are you familiar with the SAPI 5 demo you can try of
Eloquence?  Eloquence and Via Voice, the same synthesizer from a
sound and performance standpoint, are the most accurate in terms of
proper pronounciation of words in my experience.

----- Original Message -----
<<>> On Behalf Of
Sharni-Lee Ward
Sent: Saturday, March 24, 2018 10:27 PM
Subject: [nvda] I take it there have been no improvements to the
flawed espeak ng in 2017.4?

I've just caught up on all my emails. If I understood an earlier
thread correctly, despite our complaints when 2017.4 came out, the
devs did not roll back the version of espeak packaged with NVDA to
the version in 2017.3, which means that I will not be updating NVDA,
despite the wonderful-sounding new features.

Espeak, and subsequently Espeak NG, has been my default synth since I
started using NVDA. There was an issue in 2014 but I was able to get
used to that, and then it got fixed, so I was contented. The problems
I found in the espeak packaged with 2017.4 were more than I could
stand, as someone who primarily uses NVDA to read fanfiction and my
own stories. However, Espeak is among the only synths compatible with
NVDA's inflection slider, which I have maxed out for optimal
performance. I'm not about to sacrifice broad inflection for the
drones of MS voices, and I'm currently using a Win 7 computer, but
even if I was on a Win 10 one, the 1Core voices don't do it for me
either. They're pleasant, but also flat. No inflection. No way to
change the inflection. I can't stand human-sounding voices because
they're less flexible than synthetic ones in this regard. Also,
nearly all non Espeak voices are slow as well as flat, partially due
to the length of pauses between clauses of a sentence, and this is
about as unbearable as the flatness. And there is one more thing that
really clinches my unwillingness to change synths. I cannot get
anything else to cooperate with my speech dictionary. As I said, I
read a lot of fanfiction, and I have put lots of characters'
names and the names of Pokémon into my dictionary so that they are
pronounced properly. The other synths simply do not like these names,
no matter what I try to do with them, and some of them even
pronounced my name wrong, so I gave up on them.

This is why I want whoever's developing Espeak to roll back their
changes to a previous version (surely they have older versions backed
up somewhere. I would if I was developing something like this), and
for NVDA to likewise roll back the version packaged with it until the
devs of the synth work out how to alter one language without screwing
up twenty others in the process. I know I can only go so far before I
am forced to update to the latest version of NVDA or be left to
languish as more and more things become incompatible with the last
tolerable version I have.

Please, I am begging you, do something about this.

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