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Related to Formant: resonance


A set of resonances of a musical instrument or voice mechanism that form partials of sounds produced by the instrument, independent of the fundamental frequency, and give these sounds their quality.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



a term used in phonetics to denote an acoustic characteristic of speech sounds, especially vowels; formants are associated with the frequency of the voice and are responsible for the timbre of the sound. A formant is part of the frequency spectrum of a sound, which can be obtained in the laboratory by means of a sound spectrograph. The formant represents a range of frequencies defined with respect to an average frequency and designated by the letter F.

In a sound spectrum, several formants may be isolated, for example F1 = 500 hertz (Hz), F2 = 1,500 Hz, and so on. For men, the average interval between formants is 1,000 Hz; for women and children it is somewhat greater. In most cases, however, the first two formants are sufficient to distinguish vowels. F1 (150–850 Hz) corresponds to the articulatory feature of height, or the difference between close and open vowels, and is lower for close vowels. F2 (500–2,500 Hz) corresponds to the degree to which a vowel is front or back, being higher for front vowels and lower for back vowels. The sum of the frequencies F1 + F2 corresponds to the feature of roundedness; labialization causes a reduction in the frequencies corresponding to F1 and F2.


Zinder, L. R. Obshchaiafonetika. Leningrad, 1960.
Fant, G. Akusticheskaia teoriia recheobrazovaniia. Moscow, 1964. (Translated from English.)


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
The effects of surgical rapid maxillary expansion (SRME) on vowel formants. Clin Linguist Phon 2009; 23: 393-403.
The prosodic and formant features achieve the same recognition rate of 62.89%.
Among the 170 associations considered, ten coefficients were [greater than or equal to]0.40 and, thus, statistically significant at the p<0.05 level: Formant 1 was negatively correlated with the SANS alogia subscale score, Format 2 was negatively correlated with the PANSS negative symptoms subscale score and the SANS alogia subscale score; Formant 6 was significantly more prominent in male than female respondents; bandwidth was negatively correlated with the SANS affective blunting subscale score and stronger in female respondents than in male respondents; and MFCC was positively correlated with the PANSS general psychopathology subscale score and with the patients' total number of hospitalizations, and it was more prominent in male respondents than female respondents.
of "legal formants." (67) These are not selections of a single
The second variable is the formant centralization ratio (FCR), which is a coefficient that represents the magnitude of centralization of the formants F1 and F2 for vowels /i/, /u/, and /a/.
The relationship among the vowels can be examined by comparing their formant values" (Olive Greenwood and Coleman 1993).
Further to put formants in the KLAT synthesizer, we used WAVESURFER instead of PRAAT for formant estimation because formants estimation from WAVESURFER is easy to find than PRAAT, but we record my sound in the PRAAT.
The FF consist of the basic frequency parameters, as the first three formant positions ([F.sub.1], [F.sub.2], and [F.sub.3]) together with their bandwidths, and the complementary parameters (usually the formant tilts) that can be calculated by several techniques [8].
Studies of animals and birds reveal that listeners can perceive a caller's body size and intension based on the frequency, voice quality and formant spacing of a call.
The researchers tested whether a similar principle applied to human vocal attractiveness by asking male volunteers to listen to a female voice that was systematically altered for pitch, voice quality and formant spacing to signal a smaller body size.