Text to Speech pronunciation

Apr 07, 2020

I have a text to speech word that I am not sure how to get it to pronounce it a different way.  

I need the work "Live" to be pronounce like in the word alive, not like you would if you said "I want to live". 

Does this make sense? 

Is there any way to do that?


7 Replies
Thor Melicher

Currently Storyline 360 doesn’t support using SSML (Synthesized Speech Markup Language).  If they did, this would be easier to solve as you would use the phoneme tag around the word "live" like this:

<phoneme alphabet="x-sampa" ph="laIv">live</phoneme>

This code tells Amazon Polly (which is what Storyline 360 uses) to use the X-Sampa alphabet and the phoneme to pronounce it like "alive".  Amazon Polly also uses the IPA but with my attempts I wasn't successful until I used X-Sampa. :)

With that being said and that Storyline 360 doesn’t support SSML tags, I wrote an application to help facilitate the process: 

  1. Get an Amazon Polly account (yes, there is some cost involved but doesn’t seem that prohibitive) (https://aws.amazon.com/polly/)
  2. Save your scripts as separate files (MS-Word or Text)
  3. Download HeroVoice TTS from the Microsoft Windows Store (fully functioning 15-day free trial)
  4. Encode your files with HeroVoice TTS – apply a global setting for speed and even comma duration so your files are consistent.
  5. Select the voice you want – these are the same as you’ll find in Storyline today including Neural voices (which aren’t currently available in Storyline)
  6. Set the file type as SSML because you manually added your tags.  The beginning of each file with a SSML tag will have to have <speak> and the very end will need </speak>
  7. Load each audio file into Storyline

If you have one file then you probably wouldn’t need to use HeroVoice TTS as you could use the Amazon Polly console to get your file, however, you may also like these other requested features from the Storyline Community:

  • Adjust the overall speed of your files with one setting
  • Adjust the overall pause duration for commas
  • Add your own SSML to get more finer nuanced, naturally sounding results and as necessary, correct the pronunciation of words
  • Neural voices
  • Batch process your files 

For more information on what else you can do with SSML tags and Amazon Polly, a good reference can be found here: https://docs.aws.amazon.com/polly/latest/dg/supportedtags.html

Oh, one last thing!  I've noticed a difference between using Amazon Polly and how Storyline uses it.  For whatever reason, words sometimes are pronounced differently - it might be how Storyline sends text to Amazon Polly.  In HeroVoice TTS there is a preview button so you can check it before writing your phoneme SSML. :)

Jeff Forrer

Not the most elegant but could work for you.  Have the text to speech record it as "alive", then go into the Audio Editor and select the "a" part of alive that it says and delete it.  You can zoom your selection in the Audio Editor to get better control of the sound waves of the "a", that way you are left with the right "live" ;0)

Graham Cohen

I am having the exact same issue.  I need my TTS to say "Live Electrical Line" but it says it like "I live here".  I will try walt's suggestion.  Thanks everyone for your input.

***Follow up to this post.  Walt's suggestion did not work unfortunately.  It pronounced it "Le-ive Electrical Line"  I'll post if I find a solution that works.