Questions tagged [ipa]

The International Phonetic Alphabet: A Latin-based alphabet designed for transcribing all sounds of all languages.

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63
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10answers
88k views

When should one use slashes or square brackets when transcribing in IPA?

When should one use /fubar/ and when [fubar] when transcribing in IPA? What are the differences?
58
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10answers
45k views

Is there an online tool to convert IPA symbols into audio sound?

As many amateurs and beginners know, IPA is difficult to memorize and internalize at first. Does software exist where one can paste in IPA text and hear synthesized speech (ideally in the form of a ...
30
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4answers
9k views

Is it hard for software speech synthesisers to handle IPA? If so, why?

Yesterday on ELU, the IPA sequence ˌoʊkeɪˈhiːɹjəˌgoʊ was posted in a comment. I'm not very familiar with IPA, so I thought the easiest way to "decode" that would be through a software speech ...
27
votes
2answers
3k views

What do you call an IPA symbol that lacks a name (e.g. ɲ)?

Some IPA symbols such as ɲ lack any name, and when I tried searching for the symbol online, the pages I got only showed palatal nasal. But I wonder what I should call it when I talk with others. Is ...
20
votes
4answers
2k views

Is the schwa sound consistent?

The first syllable in "about" (ə'baʊt) is schwa, so is the second one in the "salad" ('sæləd), but iv'e never heard them pronounced the same way. in salad it sounds more like the i in "trick". ...
20
votes
3answers
3k views

Can the IPA represent all languages' tones?

The IPA's current tone system can show five different tone levels, and any contours formed from them. Is there any language for which this is insufficient? In other words, is there any (known, ...
17
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4answers
40k views

Automated French/Italian/German to IPA transcription

I'm looking for a website or software that will take text written in a source language and produce a transcription in IPA. The languages I am interested in are French, Italian and German, but if you ...
16
votes
1answer
3k views

Is there a difference between /d/ and /t̬/?

IPA contains diacritics for indicating voiceless (/x̥/) and voiced (/x̬/) sounds. There are also different symbols for many voiced/voiceless pairs, e.g. /d/ and /t/ or /g/ and /k/. Is there a ...
15
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6answers
12k views

Convert audio recording of word to IPA representation

Are the any open source tools/software libraries to convert an audio clip to its IPA representation? If so, are they accurate? If not, why not? Here is a Gaelic word I wish to convert: Ogg format: ...
14
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6answers
4k views

Alternatives to IPA?

Are there any other graphic systems that attempt to be as complete as the International Phonetic Alphabet?
12
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2answers
3k views

Why IPA does not indicate “soft” consonants in English?

I am a native Russian speaker. Sometimes I encounter English speakers who are trying to learn Russian and wonder how to pronounce "soft" consonants. At the same time while learning English I noticed ...
12
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10answers
6k views

Is there an easy way to type IPA?

I'm currently using the virtual IPA keyboard on TypeIt, but it takes forever. Is there an easy way to type IPA? I've found this list of Unicode keyboards on SIL.org but I'm not too sure how to ...
12
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2answers
3k views

Is there a difference between /ɕ/ and /sʲ/?

Are /ɕ/ and /ʑ/ simply shorthand for /sʲ/ and /zʲ/ as with many of the possible diacritic combinations in IPA or are they different sounds? If they are the same, is there any good reason to use one ...
12
votes
1answer
2k views

IPA transcription of the American English “bunched” /r/

There are 2 common articulations of /r/ and /r̩/ in American English, one retroflex, and the other dorsal. This phone is called the molar or bunched r. It can be described roughly as a back-palatal or ...
11
votes
2answers
417 views

What is the reasoning behind the selection of the IPA symbols?

There are many weird characters in IPA, like Glottal Stop symbol ʔ for example. Why these characters? Is there any reason for selecting them, or was their selection just arbitrary?
11
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5answers
1k views

Is it feasible to create an IPA adaptation for cats?

I was trying to transcribe my cat's noises into IPA. For example, her wanting to be petted is like [njæː] or [njaː]. But purring doesn't seem to fit any existing notation, except maybe [ʜ]. Has anyone ...
11
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1answer
3k views

How to split IPA spelling into syllables

First, please forgive my ignorance, I'm completely new to linguistics. Given the IPA spelling for word, is it possible to programmatically split it into its sounds? So, for example, given the word "...
11
votes
3answers
96k views

Does an IPA to 'English' translator exist?

IPA is really tricky to read, especially for beginners like me. Are there any online tools that can almost 'convert' pasted IPA into phonetic pronunciations or similar? I've tried Wolfram|Alpha ...
11
votes
3answers
2k views

Is there an IPA character for the sympathetic sucking in sound?

Is there an IPA symbol for the sound you might make when you burn yourself or someone tells you a story about an injury they have—when you suck your breath quickly through your teeth with your ...
10
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7answers
3k views

Does IPA notation ever get capitalized to match their written counterparts?

Some alphabets capitalize proper nouns, others capitalize all nouns. Does ipa notation ever get capitalized to match their written counterparts? I would assume not, as it might be sending mixed ...
10
votes
3answers
2k views

IPA, Why Is It Ordered That Way?

The IPA lists Plosives first, then Nasals, then Trills, then Taps, then Fricatives, then Approximants. Why is it ordered that way? I wondered if it was to do with ease of use. However, it doesn't ...
10
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2answers
2k views

Is IPA machine-readable?

I saw that SAMPA was created to be machine-readable. Does that mean that IPA isn't? If it isn't, why is that so? EDIT: By machine-readable, I meant that it could be directly interpreted by a parser/...
10
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3answers
1k views

Is whispering transcribed in IPA?

When a language is being transcribed to IPA, is the whispering included in the transcription? If so, how? I saw the Wikipedia mention about not being anything for whispering, but I was wondering if ...
10
votes
3answers
7k views

How can the IPA vowels be memorized?

Memorizing IPA consonants is trivially easy; each symbol represents one sound, and that sound can be described with a variety of parameters about manner of articulation, etc. The IPA vowels, however, ...
10
votes
2answers
644 views

Do voiceless approximants exist? What is the consensus among phoneticians/phonologists?

Voiceless sounds that are produced with supralaryngeal configurations that would be considered approximants if voiced are attested in languages (i.e. [j̊], [l̥], etc.), but none are found to contrast ...
10
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1answer
203 views

Why does Polish have male and female accents?

This is particularly interesting to me as I can't seem to find any information on the topic, but, having listened to numerous Polish speakers from both sexes, the male─female pronounciational split is ...
10
votes
1answer
591 views

IPA for Slender Irish /r'/ in Connemara Dialects

Edit: I would also be willing to reward the bounty if someone can partially answer the question by stating if my proposed IPA is possible based on the description or not. I am specifically asking ...
9
votes
3answers
3k views

Is there a reason that /w/ isn't represented on the IPA chart?

The sound that represents the English <w>, as in "week", is the voiced labio-velar approximant /w/. In the "Consonant" section of the Wiki page for the IPA, however, /w/ isn'...
9
votes
4answers
2k views

Why in English words is [o] followed by [ʊ]?

The close-mid back rounded vowel is, according to Wikipedia, "usually diphthongized to [oʊ]". Examples: row, also. In fact, in the Cambridge English Pronouncing Dictionary I didn't see o ...
9
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3answers
12k views

Does sample text exist that includes most English sounds represented by the International Phonetic Alphabet?

My understanding of the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) is that it aims to provide a set of letter-based values that represent and map to fundamental sounds present in human languages. My ...
8
votes
1answer
1k views

What is “˥˩” in the IPA?

While reading the Wikipedia page on voiced bilabial trill, I came across a transcription in the occurrence section which looks like: [tʙ̩˥˩] The word is from Lizu language and means 'bean'. What is ...
8
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2answers
1k views

What do the “less-than” and “greater-than” signs mean when used as IPA vowel diacritics?

I was recently reading an academic paper on Amdo Tibetan phonetics and the author uses IPA vowel diacritics that look like "less-than" and "greater-than" signs. Here is a picture so you know what I'm ...
7
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2answers
3k views

How are syllabic consonants written in IPA?

Suppose that, in some hypothetical language, there were two different words: /tump/ /tump/ What's the difference?, you might ask. In the first one, the word is one syllable long. In the second one, ...
6
votes
3answers
933 views

Language that uses IPA

Is there a language that uses the International Phonetic Alphabet as their official writing system? Basically, Is there a language using [a less strict version of] IPA as their writing system? Is ...
6
votes
3answers
4k views

What's the difference between [ɚ], [ɹ̩], and [əɹ]?

I've seen the "-er" sound in English (like in butter) transcribed in all three of the above ways, but I've heard there are subtle differences between them. What are these differences, if there are ...
6
votes
3answers
6k views

Should I use square brackets or slashes when transcribing an oral text in IPA?

I am transcribing an oral text into IPA in order to compare it with the "correct" pronunciation of words (e.g. according to the dictionary). I am using slashes for both versions, but it feels ...
6
votes
2answers
820 views

What is the IPA of the two-syllable r sound in English?

For example, the word "Emperor" in IPA on Wiktionary for General American is written /ˈɛmpɹɚ/. But that's kind of cheating because ɚ is basically /ɹ/ as far as I can tell. Yet, when you say ...
6
votes
1answer
1k views

IPA for phonemes - does this make sense at all?

On the Wikipedia page for the International Phonetic Alphabet, slashes for phonemes are mentioned quite casually, without getting into the discussion of how or if it makes sense to use a phonetic ...
6
votes
1answer
835 views

IPA Listening Training

Are there any programs that will play a sound and allow the user to choose which sound was played? The options would need to be IPA or some other descriptive method (e.g., voiceless alveolar stop). ...
6
votes
1answer
170 views

Online tool for IPA pronunciation synthesis

I've already found this tool from 0n0e.com but the problem is that it pronounces the words too quickly. Is there any other phoneme synthesis online which speaks a bit slower?
6
votes
1answer
392 views

Cents symbol in phonology

In examining Chol's phonology, I came across the (old?) cents symbol ¢ (with a slanted line) as a phoneme symbol. I have not been able to track what it corresponds to in IPA terms, but I suspect it's ...
6
votes
1answer
710 views

Confused about vowel diagram (Vowel chart)—Can you clarify and explain how to read it?

Ok, here is the English vowel chart: I'm really confused, what do "front" "central", "back", "close(high)", "close-mid", "open-mid", "open (low)" mean? Ok, Here is what I understood, please correct ...
5
votes
5answers
2k views

Transform Chinese, Korean, Hebrew and Arabic to IPA

I'm trying to transform texts written in Chinese, Korean, Hebrew, Arabic and other languages with non-latin alphabet to the IPA. For now, I can only think of dictionaries. Are there any other ways? ...
5
votes
2answers
1k views

For each IPA phone, are there animations or videos that depict the vocal tract during articulation?

(TL;DR) For each IPA phone, are there animations, ams, pictures or videos that depict exactly and precisely the location of your articulators (eg: your tongue), needed to articulate that letter? ...
5
votes
1answer
646 views

Which IPA sounds are similar?

Question: Is there a matrix or table showing how audibly similar the different sounds from the IPA are? I'm looking for a scalar value that somehow measures the oral distance between two phonemes. ...
5
votes
2answers
352 views

Can we simulate the pronunciation of sounds that we can't make?

There's certain non-filled places in the IPA chart because we physically can't pronounce them. For example, a velar trill or glottal trill. Using computers, is it possible that we could simulate how ...
5
votes
2answers
923 views

Is there a distinctive feature that separates alveolo-palatals from palatals?

Specifically, what distinguishes the voiceless palatal fricative /ç/ from the voiceless alveolo-palatal fricative /ɕ/? (Likewise their voiced counterparts, /ʝ/ and /ʑ/.) The IPA doesn't have alveolo-...
5
votes
2answers
328 views

Detailed “quality” of /ð/

I've been learning and using English since I was 10. I have always been more or less aware of the /θ/ sound, but it wasn't until I got interested in IPA notation, when I realized English contrasts /ð/ ...
5
votes
2answers
749 views

Can a vowel be a consonant?

So, I know there are certain consonants in the IPA that have vowel-like properties, and can therefor be used as vowels, such as [n], [m], and [l]. Examples include [pnt], or [ʒlf]. So, in the loosest ...
5
votes
2answers
5k views

Are there any good open source English text to IPA/other phonetics alphabet transcription programs?

I'm writing a computer program which requires some of this functionality at one point, so I wanted to get into a (better-written) code and have a look, to get some inspiration. Are there any good ones ...

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