I need to do phonetic analysis of several dozen brief tokens. Specifically, I want to extract FFT/LPC profiles of fricatives, and would like to experiment with different algorithms for creating profiles and comparing them across tokens. Which package would be easiest to use? Praat is obviously very phonetics-oriented, but its scripting language seems less well-developed than that of R. R has packages for everything, but I don't know how good are its packages for speech analysis and display. There's also Octave, which I have never used, and python. I would like the process to be simple and easy to figure out.
In Phonetics, there are three steps needed in order to process and analyse your data: segmenting(/labelling), numerical analysis and data visualisation.
Each of these steps can be carried out independently, therefore you can choose a distinct tool for each of them. But the interoperability is rarely possible, consequently the combination are limited.
Here is a website summarising tools that exist: http://liceu.uab.es/~joaquim/phonetics/fon_anal_acus/herram_anal_acus.html
If you are only interested in numerical analysis and data visualisation with R because your corpus is already segmented, look at the CRAN repository (keywords: phonetic, sound): https://cran.r-project.org/web/packages/available_packages_by_name.html
These packages are not good or bad, they just don't offer all the options. Then, you have to combine them, even to combine with your own code.
The easier way for you is to opt for tools that you know already. If R is a language with whom you are used to, it is better to continue to work with this language.