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Best way to create female vocals without a real female? CAN'T just up-shift formants on male vocals.

How to do this, that and the other. Share, learn, teach. How did X do that? How can I sound like Y?

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KVRist
 
70 posts since 4 Jul, 2009

Postby Dalal; Sat Nov 10, 2012 10:09 pm

I'm looking to create some abstract vocal samples of a girl singing, but I'm very picky when it comes to the sound I want, so I don't want to 'sample' existing recordings, and the girls in my life can't sing the part the way I want. That's why I've turned to creating my own, using my own voice, as weird as it sounds. That would give me the most control.

Everywhere I look, the 'solution' to transforming male vocals to female vocals is mere formant shifting, which never really works. Formant shifting by itself is the solution to sounding like a chipmunk, not a girl.

The closest I've ever come to emulating a girl's voice is by slowing down recordings of girls singing and carefully listening to them, then trying to sound 'slowed down' when I sing my part. Then I would speed my recordings up, but before doing that I would LOWER the formants a bit in Melodyne, to somewhat counteract the extreme formant increase that occurs when you speed a track up. The end results of this process have been 'close', but not quite there. Something has always sounded 'off' about the 'girl'.

This has led me to the unconvincing conclusion that it has to do with the accent. I believe girls have an inherently different method of producing vocal sounds that defines the overall feminine character of their voice. Unless a guy already exhibits this feminine characteristic in his singing voice, there is no hope of transforming his vocal to a female's vocal.

What do all of you think? I'm as stubborn as they come. If there's a better way to transform male vocals to female vocals, please let me know. I hope we can start a discussion about this here, that will lead to some better ideas on male-to-female vocal transformation. Share any tips/tricks you have!
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KVRAF
 
1606 posts since 7 Jan, 2005, from Corporate States of America

Postby Jace-BeOS; Sun Nov 11, 2012 12:56 am

Vocal cords, throat shape, body density. Formants and tone.

Try using a vocoder on a sampled female vocal. The samples vocal will be the synth your voice plays. I've done this with the V-Synth XT. It's actually not as cheesy as I expected it to be.
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Beware the Quoth
 
20686 posts since 3 Sep, 2001, from R'lyeh Oceanic Amusement Park and Funfair

Postby whyterabbyt; Sun Nov 11, 2012 3:06 am

Dalal wrote:The closest I've ever come to emulating a girl's voice is by slowing down recordings of girls singing and carefully listening to them, then trying to sound 'slowed down' when I sing my part. Then I would speed my recordings up, but before doing that I would LOWER the formants a bit in Melodyne, to somewhat counteract the extreme formant increase that occurs when you speed a track up. The end results of this process have been 'close', but not quite there. Something has always sounded 'off' about the 'girl'.

This has led me to the unconvincing conclusion that it has to do with the accent. I believe girls have an inherently different method of producing vocal sounds that defines the overall feminine character of their voice. Unless a guy already exhibits this feminine characteristic in his singing voice, there is no hope of transforming his vocal to a female's vocal.

What do all of you think? I'm as stubborn as they come. If there's a better way to transform male vocals to female vocals, please let me know. I hope we can start a discussion about this here, that will lead to some better ideas on male-to-female vocal transformation. Share any tips/tricks you have!


I think you've been using a relatively innacurate method of altering the vocals, and, rather than accept that the process isnt producing good enough results, you've come to the conclusion that 'girls speak differently'. That doesnt really make sense to me. If that's the case, why do so many women voice-act boys in animations etc? :shrug:

There are plugins specifically for this kind of process, and even they can be tricky to get to work (and while they can be relatively convincing, the type of algorithms they use can introduce artefacting) but try the demos.

http://www.fluxhome.com/products/Plug_ins/ircam_trax
http://www.antarestech.com/products/avo ... tml#throat
To laymen, software development is something akin to wizardry. Neither time, nor effort are involved. If software is missing features they want, or has bugs, it is solely because someone has been too lazy to wave their magic wand.
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10351 posts since 29 Apr, 2002, from i might peeramid
 

Postby xoxos; Sun Nov 11, 2012 10:00 am

in research i found a statement that the female glottis doesn't close as much as the male glottis.. the vocal folds act like a reed, opening and closing in response to lung pressure and returning pressure from the throat.. if the opening closed entirely, the sound would be strongly tonal.. if the reed closes poorly and part of the aperture stays open, the sound is breathier and less tonal.

in short, "women sometimes have breathier voices than men". i'm sure there are other factors :) perhaps try to inhibit chest resonances when speaking :p i expect there are many members with daughters who wouldn't mind recording a few minutes for you if perhaps you recorded a guideline.
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KVRAF
 
3894 posts since 6 Aug, 2003, from San Francisco Bay Area

Postby deastman; Sun Nov 11, 2012 10:20 am

You should be able to achieve pretty good results by pitching up 2 it 3 semitones and tweaking the formant. The trick is, its all in the performance technique and less in the signal processing. This requires practice.

Personally, I would just hire someone to sing the part.
Incomplete list of my gear: 1/4" audio patchcord
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KVRAF
 
7369 posts since 12 Mar, 2012, from South Bavaria - near the alps... :-)

Postby Tricky-Loops; Sun Nov 11, 2012 10:22 am

Maybe this program can sing for you:
http://www.vocaloid.com/en/

But personally I would rather look for a REAL singer, they are trained to make better vocals and they are happy if someone needs them. And you can talk with them and say how you want the vocals to be... :wink:
KVRist
 
70 posts since 4 Jul, 2009

Postby Dalal; Sun Nov 11, 2012 10:46 am

Jace-BeOS wrote:Try using a vocoder on a sampled female vocal. The samples vocal will be the synth your voice plays. I've done this with the V-Synth XT. It's actually not as cheesy as I expected it to be.

That's such an interesting idea! Will have to try that. Even if it doesn't sound as realistic as I want, that would be a handy trick to add to my repertoire.

whyterabbyt wrote:
I think you've been using a relatively innacurate method of altering the vocals, and, rather than accept that the process isnt producing good enough results, you've come to the conclusion that 'girls speak differently'. That doesnt really make sense to me. If that's the case, why do so many women voice-act boys in animations etc? :shrug:

There are plugins specifically for this kind of process, and even they can be tricky to get to work (and while they can be relatively convincing, the type of algorithms they use can introduce artefacting) but try the demos.

http://www.fluxhome.com/products/Plug_ins/ircam_trax
http://www.antarestech.com/products/avo ... tml#throat

Trax looks pretty interesting! I'm downloading it now. If it works, then you're awesome. I've used Throat before, but even after days and days of experimentation and combining it with other processes, it never produced the results I wanted.

Hmm, my somewhat unorthodox technique was based on countless instances of trial and error, and as I said, it's given me the best sounding girl as of yet. Most software that claims to change 'gender' only seems to increase the formant, which, for many men, will only make them sound like chipmunks.

There ARE men out there who can be sped up to sound just like girls, and there are many girls that can be slowed down to sound like men. As you said, there are girls that can sound like boys. But from what I've seen, those are rarer cases. My conclusion that girls speak differently was in part based on another thread which established that there's a fundamental difference from guys in the way in which girls produce sounds. Combined with my apparent impossibility to produce an accurate female vocal, I jumped to this conclusion and left the issue idle for a long time.

But I'm going to go with what you said. I just haven't found the right method yet!

xoxos wrote:in short, "women sometimes have breathier voices than men". i'm sure there are other factors perhaps try to inhibit chest resonances when speaking :p i expect there are many members with daughters who wouldn't mind recording a few minutes for you if perhaps you recorded a guideline.

Interesting. I may have read something similar in the past. I'll do more research about that and see if I can integrate that knowledge into my current method. If it works, it'll be awesome. Thanks!
KVRist
 
266 posts since 2 Jul, 2012, from Mexico D.F.

Postby tanabarbier; Sun Nov 11, 2012 12:56 pm

Hi!
I think your better option is IRCAM TOOLS TRAX, it works quite well in those exemples
=> http://www.fluxhome.com/products/plug_ins/ircam_trax
But it is really expensive (well, to me it is: 419 USD)

edit:
Here's the video that show that trax on male to female action:
http://youtu.be/0xjWGcLmjSs

It looks like a really nice plugin, and I'll shure buy it when I'll win the lotery.
KVRAF
 
3920 posts since 16 Feb, 2005

Postby camsr; Sun Nov 11, 2012 2:27 pm

Have you tried tucking your stuff between your thighs and wearing a miniskirt?
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KVRian
 
1204 posts since 10 Mar, 2004

Postby Mikelo; Mon Nov 12, 2012 8:43 pm

KVRer
 
8 posts since 5 May, 2012, from The Netherlands

Postby addictive2012; Tue Nov 13, 2012 1:02 pm

Mikelo, that looks pretty interesting!
KVRian
 
1021 posts since 19 Feb, 2003

Postby timobrien; Wed Nov 14, 2012 1:49 pm

Dalal wrote:...I'm very picky when it comes to the sound I want...


You are correct that the architecture of the female is different than the male (imagine that!)

If you are picky, you need to find a real girl. Period.
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KVRAF
 
18465 posts since 26 Jul, 2005, from Inside Schroedinger's Cat...or am I...

Postby robojam; Wed Nov 14, 2012 2:09 pm

timobrien wrote:you need to find a real girl. Period.

Ewww...
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KVRAF
 
9608 posts since 13 Nov, 2006, from in Uranus, playin' lollipop
 

Postby debra1rlo; Wed Nov 14, 2012 2:41 pm

robojam wrote:
timobrien wrote:you need to find a real girl. Period.

Ewww...

agreed... seems like he could wait about a week.
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addled muppet weed
 
33877 posts since 25 Jan, 2003, from through the looking glass
 

Postby vurt; Wed Nov 14, 2012 2:45 pm

das vampyr?

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