Roles of voice onset time and F0 in stop consonant voicing perception: Effects of masking noise and low-pass filtering

Matthew B. Winn, Monita Chatterjee, William J. Idsardi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

18 Scopus citations


Purpose: The contributions of voice onset time (VOT) and fundamental frequency (F0) were evaluated for the perception of voicing in syllable-initial stop consonants in words that were low-pass filtered and/or masked by speech-shaped noise. It was expected that listeners would rely less on VOT and more on F0 in these degraded conditions. Method: Twenty young listeners with normal hearing identified modified natural speech tokens that varied by VOT and F0 in several conditions of low-pass filtering and masking noise. Stimuli included /b/-/p/ and /d/-/t/ continua that were presented in separate blocks. Identification results were modeled using mixed-effects logistic regression. Results: When speech was filtered and/or masked by noise, listeners' voicing perceptions were driven less by VOT and more by F0. Speech-shaped masking noise exerted greater effects on the /b/-/p/ contrast, while low-pass filtering exerted greater effects on the /d/-/t/ contrast, consistent with the acoustics of these contrasts. Conclusion: Listeners can adjust their use of acoustic-phonetic cues in a dynamic way that is appropriate for challenging listening conditions; cues that are less influential in ideal conditions can gain priority in challenging conditions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1097-1107
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 1 2013



  • Bandwidth
  • Noise
  • Speech perception
  • Voicing contrast

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Linguistics and Language
  • Speech and Hearing

Cite this