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Vox Studio Features

Vox Studio Functionality

  • Vox Studio is a 32-bit Windows software tool for anyone involved in the regular production of voice prompts for voice processing and computer telephony applications (CTI) like voice mail, interactive voice or fax response, audiotex, and call centers.
  • Vox Studio provides graphical tools to record, edit and play prompt files in a wide variety of telecom formats and at various sample rates. You need a Windows 95/98/NT4/2000 PC equipped PC with Vox Studio and a multimedia compliant sound card to record or play files. You do not need a sound card for performing file conversions only.
  • Conversion is possible between all the multimedia and voice processing telephony formats known to Vox Studio. Some CTI system suppliers use indexed voice files. Conversion from stand-alone files to these multi-message indexed files and back is supported.
  • The built-in teleprompter is similar to the tool that TV anchormen and public speakers use to read their announcements from. No need to mess with paper while recording lots of prompts.
  • The tape-loader will automatically digitize a pre recorded (studio) tape, detect the silences between successive prompts, decide where to cut and save each prompt under a pre-assigned (or automatically generated) filename.
  • The file slicer makes it easy to cut one large wav file produced during a large recording session into smaller voice prompts.
  • Vox Studio can synthetize sequences of DTMF tones of various lengths for test and control applications. There is also a DTMF detector in Vox Studio.
  • Special effects such as high-pass and low-pass filtering, DTMF removal filtering, signal centering around the base-line, silence and volume normalization can be applied.
  • Vox Studio has drag-and-drop capability. You can select telephony or multi-media files from Explorer and drop them onto Vox Studio. This will start the loading or playback of the files you selected. All file formats supported by Vox Studio can be loaded or played like this.
  • The format conversion functions can be performed in batch mode so that you can continue to use your PC for other tasks while Vox Studio converts thousands of files. Conversions can also be controlled from an external application using Vox Studio's command-line or DLL conversion capability. Here are more details on what Vox Studio can do:

Recording Functionality

    The GUI interface allows easy recording of WAV sound files at selected frequencies, ranging from 6 kHz to 64 kHz (if your hardware allows it).

    Recording is done with a user-friendly virtual cassette recorder device. The prompts are recorded one by one and can be played back immediately for verification before being saved. For mass recording of many files you should use the teleprompter or the tape loader functions instead.

Teleprompter Functionality

    An on-screen script-based prompter allows fast recording of 8-bit and 16-bit multimedia .wav files at sampling frequencies ranging from 6 kHz to 64 kHz.

    Based on an ASCII text file script, prompt messages are flashed one by one the PC's screen and can be recorded by tapping the space bar or clicking a button and simply reading the messages into the microphone as they appear on screen.

    The voice messages are automatically recorded one by one as .wav files under the names you pre-defined in the ASCII-text script file.

Tape Loader Functionality

    The tape loader allows you to automatically digitize a pre-recorded tape. Connect the output of your tape player to the input of your sound card and start the tape loader in Vox Studio. The tape loader will automatically detect where to cut your prompts and will save them all under file names which you define using an ASCII text script or under automatically generated file names. Go for a pizza, your digitized files will be ready when you come back.

    The tape loader can also be used as a simple voice-operated prompter as it recognizes silences between spoken messages and flashes the text of the next message on screen as soon as it detects the end of the previous one.

File Slicer Functionality

    The file slicer is similar to the tape loader but works on one single large wav file. It allows you to automatically cut a large pre-recorded file. The file slicer will automatically detect where to cut your prompts and will save them all under file names which you define using an ASCII text script or under automatically generated file names. Again, go for a pizza, your cut files will be ready when you come back.

Playback Functionality

    Playback capability for the currently loaded file is only one click away. Use the Play, Pause and Stop buttons in the toolbar at the bottom of Vox Studio's main window. You can play back at double speed if you use the device for transcription or checking purposes. You can even playback in reverse mode.

    The Play List command allows sequential playback of a whole list of multimedia wav files at sample frequencies ranging from 6 kHz to 64 kHz or telephony vox files at sample frequencies ranging from 6 kHz to 16 kHz.

    Drag-and-drop playback capability is provided as well. Files can be dragged from Explorer and dropped onto a running instance of Vox Studio to start the Play List command.

    Vox Studio also has basic transcription features which make it possible to start, pause or stop sound file playback in Vox Studio from hot-key combinations within the Microsoft Word wordprocessor. Files can be transcribed faster as there is no need to constantly switch from one program to the other.

Waveform Display Functionality

    The waveform display gives excellent feedback when setting-up a recording session. The display immediately shows when files were recorded at too high or too low an amplitude. Noisy background sounds are also clearly visible. The waveform is also very useful when editing the files.

DTMF Generation and Detection Functionality

    Complex DTMF sequences of various lengths can be saved in various file formats at various sampling rates.

    A virtual telephone keypad (beeper) allows keying-in a string of DTMF digits and pause commands. The DTMF digits 0 to 9, A to D and * and # are all available.

    The default length of the individually produced DTMF tones and silences is programmable.

    The program can also detect DTMF sequences in files, thereby indicating which files may need DTMF filtering to avoid talk-off problems by unwanted DTMF tones.

Editing Functionality

    Vox Studio allows you to select any part of a sound file and then copy, cut, delete and paste it. To obtain a better editing precision you can also zoom-in and zoom-out in your sound file.

    While editing you can play the selected sound segment in order to obtain both visible and audible feedback..

Conversion Functionality

    Vox Studio can convert any sound file format it knows to any other file format it knows. This includes the capability to change the sampling rate (down and up) as well as the coding algorithm ! You can, for instance, convert a 44.1 kHz .wav file into a 6 kHz ADPCM file or convert a Mu-law PCM file at 8 kHz into an A-law PCM file at 8 kHz. You could even do unusual operations, like converting a 6 kHz ADPCM voice-mail file into a 22 kHz .wav multi-media file !

    The amplitude of the recorded signals is left unchanged by the conversion processes. You can, however, elect to activate the "Normalize Volume" option in the conversion dialog boxes or use the Normalize menu command. This will give you the ability to do "a posteriori" automatic amplitude adjustments.

    Conversions can be remote controlled from an external application using Vox Studio's command-line and DLL conversion capabilities. This allows programmers to use our fast and high quality conversions in their own applicartions.

    In addition to the usual sample rates for telephony or multimedia Vox Studio now has the ability to convert to and from any custom sample rate.

    See the File Formats section for a complete summary of what file types Vox Studio can record, playback, edit, convert or otherwise manipulate.

Group and Ungroup Functionality

    Individual, stand-alone prompt files can be converted into one, single, large indexed file. This automated procedure can be directed through a script file. The prompter script file and the group and un-group script files are compatible with one another. You also have the possiblity to avoid a script file entirely and to select and sequence the files to group manually.

    Indexed files can be un-grouped into their individual components. A script file can optionally be generated. This script file is then compatible for use as a prompter script file or a group script file as described above.

    Thanks to the script file technique it is now possible to smoothly record individual prompts with the prompter, group them into an indexed file, un-group the files and re-record one of the prompts then re-group it all to an index file, etc.

    Vox Studio currently supports grouping and un-grouping for native Dialogic (vap) and NMS (vox) indexed files. You could un-group a file in one indexed format into its separate components, do a format conversion on the components and re-group these in the other indexed format.

    When grouping to an indexed file, Vox Studio can use source files in any supported file format and will convert to the target format on-the-fly if necessary. For instance, you can select a whole bunch of wav files and produce an indexed file with ADPCM prompts using a single operation.

Center Functionality

    Vox Studio has the ability to re-center a sound signal around the zero baseline if, for whatever reason, a DC offset or a very low frequency interference has been added to your original sound signal. Some low-cost sound cards can introduce very significant and disturbing DC offsets.

    Centering restores the signal's symmetry, and is useful if the signal later has to be amplified or otherwise manipulated.

Amplitude Normalization Functionality

    For consistency, menu prompts and recorded messages should all be played loud and clear to the telephone line, if possible with similar sound volumes.

    It is not always easy to assemble several hundred messages for a telephony voice processing application and have them all recorded at nearly constant and nearly maximum amplitude. Sometimes it may be necessary to combine messages recorded during different recording sessions.

    Here again, Vox Studio can help. Vox Studio can automatically normalize the amplitude of all your files. Sit back and relax while Vox Studio does the dirty work for you.

Silence Adjustment Functionality

    Many voice processing professionals buy graphical voice editors that can do nice cut and paste operations on sound files and then end up doing only one thing with their voice editor: manually add or remove periods of silence at the beginning and end of their recordings. This is usually a time consuming and boring trial-and-error activity. If you have to do this on hundreds of files, it is a nightmare.

    You can completely automate this repetitive task with the help of Vox Studio. Select a default length for leading and trailing silence and give a single command to apply it to your prompt. Vox Studio goes and does all the work for you. This works on multiple files in batch-mode too, on up to 1,024 files per command !

    Automatic silence adjustment is a threshold-activated process and requires spotless, clean recordings.

DTMF Filtering Functionality

    Some speaker voices can cause repeated false DTMF detections. This filter cleans the files by removing the offending DTMF frequencies. Vox Studio also has a DTMF detector which allows you to find files that may need DTMF filtering.

High and Low-pass Filtering

    Removes unwanted hiss or rumble from poor files.

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