An Acoustic Analysis of Inbreath Noises in Read and Spontaneous Speech

Juergen Trouvain, Raphael Werner, Bernd Möbius


Inbreath noises are very common non-verbal vocalisations in spoken communication. They can occur in a multitude of contexts and can serve as functional markers in various ways, with indicating syntactic-prosodic breaks as its salient but not exclusive function. In this paper we first describe some acoustic-phonetic features of inbreath noises such as intensity and duration. Second we analyse read speech and spontaneous dialogues from four corpora with data of twenty speakers of German. It is found that the majority of pauses contain inbreath noises, which are typically soft in intensity and extremely variable in duration. The link between the duration of the entire pause and the breath noise is stronger in read speech than in spontaneous dialogues. It is suggested that ingressive frication can be rather informative for various types of prosodic analysis.


 DOI: 10.21437/SpeechProsody.2020-161

Cite as: Trouvain, J., Werner, R., Möbius, B. (2020) An Acoustic Analysis of Inbreath Noises in Read and Spontaneous Speech. Proc. 10th International Conference on Speech Prosody 2020, 789-793, DOI: 10.21437/SpeechProsody.2020-161.


@inproceedings{Trouvain2020,
  author={Juergen Trouvain and Raphael Werner and Bernd Möbius},
  title={{An Acoustic Analysis of Inbreath Noises in Read and Spontaneous Speech}},
  year=2020,
  booktitle={Proc. 10th International Conference on Speech Prosody 2020},
  pages={789--793},
  doi={10.21437/SpeechProsody.2020-161},
  url={http://dx.doi.org/10.21437/SpeechProsody.2020-161}
}