New method for measuring realistic speech levels in conversations

Friday 26 Mar 21


Naim Mansour
DTU Health Tech


Marton Marschall
Senior Officer
DTU Health Tech


Tobias May
Associate Professor
DTU Health Tech
+45 45 25 39 59


Torsten Dau
Head of Sections, Professor
DTU Health Tech
+45 45 25 39 77
Researchers at Hearing Systems, Health Tech DTU, and WIDEX have found a new method to measure conversational signal to noise ratios. These findings are featured in JASA, the Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, this month.

The analysis of real-world conversational signal-to-noise ratios (SNRs) may provide insight into people's communicative strategies and difficulties, and guide the development of hearing devices. This study introduces a method for accurate in-situ SNR estimation, where the speech signal of a target talker in natural conversation is captured by a cheek-mounted microphone, adjusted for free-field conditions, and convolved with a measured impulse response to estimate its power at the receiving talker. The method is applied to in-situ recordings of conversations in two real-world sound scenarios and shown to result in more accurate SNR estimates compared to a typical single-channel method.

Naim Mansour, Marton Marshall, Tobias May, Adam Westermann, Torsten Dau
Link to article

The research was supported by the Centre for Applied Hearing Research (CAHR) Hearing Systems DTU and Widex A/S.

Caption: Measuring the response of a cheek-mounted microphone with a head-and-torso simulator. Photo: Naim Mansour