Extra Voices for NVDA

NVDA already comes packaged with its own speech synthesizer called eSpeak. It is very responsive, has the ability to speak in over 30 languages, is understandable at fast rates, and is very tiny. As it is built right in, it will be available on any system you choose to run NVDA.

However, as some users feel it sounds a little robotic and would prefer something a little more friendly sounding, a list of speech synthesizers has been created, to help you find a voice that suits your needs. Each synthesizer in the list has been marked as either free or commercial.

Table of contents:

Nuance Vocalizer

The Vocalizer range of voices from Nuance, which have proven to be popular on iPhones and the Mac, can now all be purchased for one affordable price for use with NVDA. Whether you use NVDA installed on one computer, or carry it around with you for access at anytime on a USB flash drive, these performant and high-quality voices will be there when you need them. Purchasing Vocalizer from Tiflotecnia or its resellers today gives you access to over 50 different voices covering more than 30 major languages. A minimum of 10 EURO is also donated to NV Access and the NVDA project for each purchase made.

For more information about Vocalizer with NVDA, trial downloads and a list of distributors, please visit the official  Vocalizer NVDA website.

Infovox4 from Acapela Group

Infovox4 is a product based on the text-to-speech voices from Acapela-Group, available in more than 20 languages. It is shipped as a USB drive containing a copy of NVDA, pre-configured to use the included Acapela voices. It provides instantaneous access to any PC by just plugging in the USB, without need of local installation or administration rights. It also supports local installation on up to 3 computers. Two levels of voice quality are available in each language: high quality voices which are ideal for long reading, and compressed voices (called Colibri voices) to provide better performance when browsing text and menus at high reading speed. A donation to NVDA is granted for each sold unit of infovox4. For more information, evaluation versions and a list of distributors, please visit the official Infovox4 page.

Microsoft Speech API version 5

NVDA supports Microsoft SAPI5 voices. There are many commercial SAPI5 voices available to purchase and download online, however most computers will already have at least one SAPI5 voice already installed ready to use with NVDA. To use SAPI5, go to Synthesizer... under Preferences in the NVDA menu, and select Microsoft Speech API version 5. Now from NVDA's voice settings dialog (also under preferences) you can choose from the available voices.

Pre-installed voices

For English versions of Windows XP, Microsoft Sam is already included, and on Windows 7, you have access to the rather popular Microsoft Anna. Non-English versions of Windows may have other voices available.

SAPI4 compliant voices

SAPI 4 is an older Microsoft standard for software speech synthesizers. The following synthesizers, once installed on your system, can be accessed by selecting Microsoft Speech API version 4 from NVDA's Synthesizer dialog. If you can't see the Microsoft Speech API version 4 synthesizer in the Synthesizer dialog, you may need to also install the SAPI4 runtime

SAPI4 Microsoft Speech Synthesis Engine (Free)

The rather popular Mike Mary and Sam voices from Microsoft can be downloaded and installed for use with NVDA on any Windows Operating System. Mike and Mary are certainly a good choice for those who are looking for a free but friendly sounding voice. Download SAPI4 Microsoft Synthesis Engine

L&H TruVoice (Free)

TruVoice is another English SAPI4 synthesizer that can be used with NVDA. There are 8 male voices and 2 female voices in this engine.

Download TruVoice - American English

Portable voices

The following speech synthesizers can all be installed in to your NVDA user configuration directory, meaning that they can be carried around with NVDA on a USB key or other storage device where ever you go. The voices will of course also work with an installed copy of NVDA.

Svox Pico (free)

Svox Pico is a rather small but human sounding synthesizer that supports English U.S., English U.K., Spanish, French, Italian, and German languages.

To install this synthesizer in to your currently running copy of NVDA, go to manage Add-ons found under Tools in the NVDA menu, press the Install... button and locate the downloaded nvda-addon file on your computer.

Festival (Free)

Another synthesizer that attempts to offer more natural sounding voices though slightly larger and less responsive than SVox Pico. This package provides two English and one Czech voices.

Download Festival for NVDA 2012.2 or higher

To install this synthesizer in to your currently running copy of NVDA, go to manage Add-ons found under Tools in the NVDA menu, press the Install... button and locate the downloaded nvda-addon file on your computer.

Newfon (Free)

Newfon is a synthesizer by Sergey Shishmintzev which supports the Russian and Ukrainian languages.

Download NewFon for NVDA

To install this synthesizer in to your currently running copy of NVDA, go to manage Add-ons found under Tools in the NVDA menu, press the Install... button and locate the downloaded nvda-addon file on your computer.

RHVoice (Free)

RHVoice is a speech synthesizer for the Russian language.

Download RHVoice for NVDA 2010.2 and older

To install the sinthesizer unpack the archive into the synthDrivers subdirectory of the NVDA's user config directory.

NV Speech Player

NV Speech Player is a free and open-source speech synthesizer currently being developed by NV Access, that strives to provide a voice similar to Eloquence or Dectalk. This Klatt-based formant synthesizer is currently in the prototype stage, but, NV Access welcomes testing by the community, so that it can be further enhanced. NV Speech Player only speaks in English, but there are plans to extend it to other languages, once work on English is fully complete. You can read more about NV Speech Player, and download a copy, at: the NV Speech Player project page.

Microsoft Speech Platform (Free) =

The Microsoft Speech Platform provides voices for many languages which are normally used in the development of server-based speech applications. These voices can also be used with NVDA.

To use these voices, you will need to install two components:

  • Microsoft Speech Platform - Runtime (Version 11), x86: http://www.microsoft.com/download/en/details.aspx?id=27225 Note that you must install the x86 version even if your system is 64-bit, otherwise you will get a "Synthesizer Error - Could not load the mssp synthesizer" message when trying to select Microsoft Speech platform in the Synthesizer settings.
  • Microsoft Speech Platform - Runtime Languages (Version 11): http://www.microsoft.com/download/en/details.aspx?id=27224 This page includes many files for both speech recognition and text-to- speech. Choose the files containing the TTS data for the desired languages/voices. For example, the file MSSpeech_TTS_en-US_ZiraPro.msi is a U.S. English voice. You don't need to install the MSSpeech_SR MSI files, as those are not voices, rather they are for speech recognition.