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Shigeki Karita

Shigeki Karita

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    Preview abstract This paper introduces a new speech dataset called ``LibriTTS-R'' designed for text-to-speech (TTS) use. It is derived by applying speech restoration to the LibriTTS corpus, which consists of 585 hours of speech data at 24 kHz sampling rate from 2,456 speakers and the corresponding texts. The constituent samples of LibriTTS-R are identical to those of LibriTTS, with only the sound quality improved. Experimental results show that the LibriTTS-R ground-truth samples showed significantly improved sound quality compared to those in LibriTTS. In addition, neural end-to-end TTS trained with LibriTTS-R achieved speech naturalness on par with that of the ground-truth samples. The corpus is freely available for download from [URL-HERE] View details
    Preview abstract Speech restoration (SR) is a task of converting degraded speech signals into high-quality ones. In this study, we propose a robust SR model called Miipher, and apply Miipher to a new SR application: increasing the amount of high-quality training data for speech generation by converting speech samples collected from the web to studio-quality. To make our SR model robust against various degradation, we use (i) a speech representation extracted from w2v-BERT for the input feature, and (ii) linguistic features extracted from transcripts and PnG-BERT for conditioning features. Experiments show that the proposed model (i) is robust against various audio degradation, (ii) can restore samples in the LJspeech dataset and improves the quality of text-to-speech (TTS) outputs without changing the model and hyper-parameters, and (iii) enable us to train a high-quality TTS model from restored speech samples collected from the web. View details
    Preview abstract Speech enhancement (SE) is used as a frontend in speech applications including automatic speech recognition (ASR) and telecommunication. A difficulty in using the SE frontend is that the appropriate noise reduction level differs depending on applications and/or noise characteristics. In this study, we propose ``{\it signal-to-noise ratio improvement (SNRi) target training}''; the SE frontend is trained to output a signal whose SNRi is controlled by an auxiliary scalar input. In joint training with a backend, the target SNRi value is estimated by an auxiliary network. By training all networks to minimize the backend task loss, we can estimate the appropriate noise reduction level for each noisy input in a data-driven scheme. Our experiments showed that the SNRi target training enables control of the output SNRi. In addition, the proposed joint training relatively reduces word error rate by 4.0\% and 5.7\% compared to a Conformer-based standard ASR model and conventional SE-ASR joint training model, respectively. Furthermore, by analyzing the predicted target SNRi, we observed the jointly trained network automatically controls the target SNRi according to noise characteristics. Audio demos are available in our demo page [google.github.io/df-conformer/snri_target/]. View details
    Preview abstract End-to-end speech recognition is a promising technology for enabling compact automatic speech recognition (ASR) systems since it can unify the acoustic and language model into a single neural network. However, as a drawback, training of end-to-end speech recognizers always requires transcribed utterances. Since end-to-end models are also known to be severely data hungry, this constraint is crucial especially because obtaining transcribed utterances is costly and can possibly be impractical or impossible. This paper proposes a method for alleviating this issue by transferring knowledge from a language model neural network that can be pretrained with text-only data. Specifically, this paper attempts to transfer semantic knowledge acquired in embedding vectors of large-scale language models. Since embedding vectors can be assumed as implicit representations of linguistic information such as part-of-speech, intent, and so on, those are also expected to be useful modeling cues for ASR decoders. This paper extends two types of ASR decoders, attention-based decoders and neural transducers, by modifying training loss functions to include embedding prediction terms. The proposed systems were shown to be effective for error rate reduction without incurring extra computational costs in the decoding phase. View details
    Preview abstract End-to-end (E2E) modeling is advantageous for automatic speech recognition (ASR) especially for Japanese since word-based tokenization of Japanese is not trivial, and E2E modeling is able to model character sequences directly. This paper focuses on the latest E2E modeling techniques, and investigates their performances on character-based Japanese ASR by conducting comparative experiments. The results are analyzed and discussed in order to understand the relative advantages of long short-term memory (LSTM), and Conformer models in combination with connectionist temporal classification, transducer, and attention-based loss functions. Furthermore, the paper investigates on effectivity of the recent training techniques such as data augmentation (SpecAugment), variational noise injection, and exponential moving average. The best configuration found in the paper achieved the state-of-the-art character error rates of 4.1%, 3.2%, and 3.5% for Corpus of Spontaneous Japanese (CSJ) eval1, eval2, and eval3 tasks, respectively. The system is also shown to be computationally efficient thanks to the efficiency of Conformer transducers. View details
    The 2020 ESPnet update: new features, broadened applications, performance improvements, and future plans
    Aswin Shanmugam Subramanian
    Chenda Li
    Florian Boyer
    Hirofumi Inaguma
    Jing Shi
    Naoyuki Kamo
    Pengcheng Guo
    Shinji Watanabe
    Takaaki Hori
    Tomoki Hayashi
    Wangyou Zhang
    Wen-Chin Huang
    Xuankai Chang
    Yosuke Higuchi
    IEEE Data Science and Learning Workshop 2021 (2021)
    Preview abstract This paper describes the recent development of ESPnet, an end-to-end speech processing toolkit. This project was initiated in December 2017 to mainly deal with end-to-end speech recognition experiments based on sequence-to-sequence modeling. The project has grown rapidly and now covers a wide range of speech processing applications. Now ESPnet also includes text to speech (TTS), voice conversation (VC), speech translation (ST), and speech enhancement (SE) with support for beamforming, speech separation, denoising, and dereverberation. All applications are trained in an end-to-end manner, thanks to the generic sequence to sequence modeling properties, and they can be further integrated and jointly optimized. Also, ESPnet provides reproducible all-in-one recipes for these applications with state-of-the-art performance in various benchmarks by incorporating transformer, advanced data augmentation, and conformer. This project aims to provide up-to-date speech processing experience to the community so that researchers in academia and various industry scales can develop their technologies collaboratively. View details
    Preview abstract Combinations of a trainable filterbank and a mask prediction network is a strong framework in single-channel speech enhancement (SE). Since the denoising performance and computational efficiency are mainly affected by the structure of the mask prediction network, we aim to improve this network. In this study, by focusing on a similarity between the structure of Conv-TasNet and Conformer, we integrate the Conformer into SE as a mask prediction network to benefit its powerful sequential modeling ability. To improve the computational complexity and local sequential modeling, we extend the Conformer using linear complexity attention and stacked 1-D dilated depthwise convolution layers. Experimental results show that (i) the use of linear complexity attention avoids high computational complexity, and (ii) our model achieves higher scale-invariant signal-to-noise ratio than the improved time-dilated convolution network (TDCN++), an extended version of Conv-TasNet. View details
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