Reliability of human-supervised formant-trajectory measurement for forensic voice comparison

Cuiling Zhang, Geoffrey Stewart Morrison*, Felipe Ochoa, Ewald Enzinger

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Acoustic-phonetic approaches to forensic voice comparison often include human-supervised measurement of vowel formants, but the reliability of such measurements is a matter of concern. This study assesses the within- and between-supervisor variability of three sets of formant-trajectory measurements made by each of four human supervisors. It also assesses the validity and reliability of forensic-voice-comparison systems based on these measurements. Each supervisor's formant-trajectory system was fused with a baseline mel-frequency cepstral-coefficient system, and performance was assessed relative to the baseline system. Substantial improvements in validity were found for all supervisors' systems, but some supervisors' systems were more reliable than others.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberEL54
JournalJournal of the Acoustical Society of America
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2013


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