Article details

Research area
Speech enhancement

EURASIP Journal on Advances in Signal Processing


Simon Graf, Tobias Herbig, Markus Buck, Gerhard Schmidt

Features for voice activity detection: a comparative analysis


In many speech signal processing applications, voice activity detection (VAD) plays an essential role for separating an audio stream into time intervals that contain speech activity and time intervals where speech is absent. Many features that reflect the presence of speech were introduced in literature. However, to our knowledge, no extensive comparison has been provided yet. In this article, we therefore present a structured overview of several established VAD features that target at different properties of speech. We categorize the features with respect to properties that are exploited, such as power, harmonicity, or modulation, and evaluate the performance of some dedicated features. The importance of temporal context is discussed in relation to latency restrictions imposed by different applications. Our analyses allow for selecting promising VAD features and finding a reasonable trade-off between performance and complexity.

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