On the Relationship Between Short-Time Objective Intelligibility and Short-Time Spectral-Amplitude Mean-Square Error for Speech Enhancement

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Abstract

The majority of deep neural network (DNN) based speech enhancement algorithms rely on the mean-square error (MSE) criterion of short-time spectral amplitudes (STSA), which has no apparent link to human perception, e.g., speech intelligibility. Short-time objective intelligibility (STOI), a popular state-of-the-art speech intelligibility estimator, on the other hand, relies on linear correlation of speech temporal envelopes. This raises the question if a DNN training criterion based on envelope linear correlation (ELC) can lead to improved speech intelligibility performance of DNN-based speech enhancement algorithms compared to algorithms based on the STSA-MSE criterion. In this paper, we derive that, under certain general conditions, the STSA-MSE and ELC criteria are practically equivalent, and we provide empirical data to support our theoretical results. Furthermore, our experimental findings suggest that the standard STSA minimum-MSE estimator is near optimal, if the objective is to enhance noisy speech in a manner, which is optimal with respect to the STOI speech intelligibility estimator.

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The majority of deep neural network (DNN) based speech enhancement algorithms rely on the mean-square error (MSE) criterion of short-time spectral amplitudes (STSA), which has no apparent link to human perception, e.g., speech intelligibility. Short-time objective intelligibility (STOI), a popular state-of-the-art speech intelligibility estimator, on the other hand, relies on linear correlation of speech temporal envelopes. This raises the question if a DNN training criterion based on envelope linear correlation (ELC) can lead to improved speech intelligibility performance of DNN-based speech enhancement algorithms compared to algorithms based on the STSA-MSE criterion. In this paper, we derive that, under certain general conditions, the STSA-MSE and ELC criteria are practically equivalent, and we provide empirical data to support our theoretical results. Furthermore, our experimental findings suggest that the standard STSA minimum-MSE estimator is near optimal, if the objective is to enhance noisy speech in a manner, which is optimal with respect to the STOI speech intelligibility estimator.

Original languageEnglish
Article number8509159
JournalIEEE/ACM Transactions on Audio, Speech, and Language Processing
Volume27
Issue number2
Pages (from-to)283-295
Number of pages13
ISSN2329-9290
DOI
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2019
Publication categoryResearch
Peer-reviewedYes

    Research areas

  • Speech enhancement, deep neural networks, minimum mean-square error estimator, speech intelligibility
ID: 288913810