Update on voice banking?

EricInLA

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Hi folks,

I know there are lots of old posts on voice banking, but since technology moves fast, I thought I would inquire as to recent experiences people have had. Perhaps there's something new out there? I received a recommendation for "AudioRec" but can't find anything on its application for pALS. Anyone used this? I know different programs are geared for different stages of vocal ability. I still have full abilities with my voice, and at the moment, GOBS of free time to do voice recording. So, my preference is one with high voice quality even it requires full vocal strength and lots of recording.
 

lgelb

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I've heard banked/synthesized voices that sounded decent, and others that sounded generic. Since you have time on your hands, I'd use it for some "voice letters" to your loved ones, as well as the banking.

Best,
Laurie
 

ReginaS

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My only advice would be to start soon. My partner started when he could still speak very well. I believe he used Modeltalker(?). He was about 50%-75% done w. reading/recording the sentences when Chrome came out w. a browser update and the recording stopped working. The techs at Modeltalker could not fix the issue before his voice deteriorated too much. However, most systems have their 'own' voices and choices which we found easier to understand than the recorded voice. We had quite some fun tying out all the voices that our devices provided...

Much luck with this!!
 

KarenNWendyn

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Model Talker is the way to go. I started when my voice was already going, and sadly the resulting synthetic voice does not work for me. Fortunately there are a variety of Siri-type voices (and different accents) one can use. Someone can even donate a voice.
 

EricInLA

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Thanks for your replies. Seems like the consensus is Model Talker, so I will lean toward that one. I reviewed all of the info. on the Team Gleason site. It took me re-reading it a couple times before figuring out the difference between the AAC and SGD acronyms, but I think I get it now. If I understand correctly, I don't need the actual AAC device in order to do all of the recording - I just need a microphone, the Model Talker software, and an internet connection. I'm guessing I will need to choose an AAC device at some point when I need to utilize my banked voice, right?
 

KarenNWendyn

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Yes. That is correct. The AAC is only if/ when you need it and requires a DME script from your physician, unless you choose to buy one on your own. But Medicare and the Gleason Act cover the cost, so I feel it’s worth waiting for the speech therapist’s recommendation. It’s possible you may never need one. You can bank your voice well in advance of any need.
 

EricInLA

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Karen, when you say I may never need one, are you saying there’s a chance i wouldn’t lose my ability to speak? Or do you mean something else?
 

affected

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the only predictable thing about ALS is how unpredictable it is. no comfort in those words I know.

however, if you don't voice bank, and you do lose your speech, it will be too late. most people find it is easiest to just set yourself doing an amount of recording each day - make it an amount that isn't too onerous and you will get a better recording each day.
 

EricInLA

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Good idea - I actually have the time now since everything is slow work-wise during this Covid-19 crisis
 

affected

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yes, do it now while you can get the best result from where your voice is at, and if you have some extra time, it will be a good way to use it :)
 

Wilson2009

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Yes, do it now. My Model Talker voice sounds nothing like my voice prior to onset.

You don't need a dedicated AAC device to use your Model Talker voice. MT will install on either Windows or MacOS. Once installed you can use the MT application to 'speak' or set the MT voice as your default voice for use with another application like Balabolka, which is a free software package.

By the way, an often overlooked part of the Forum is the subform link under the General Discussion forum, which leads to the Resources list. Lots of good information there, including lists of acronyms.
 

Tkthiede

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One of the first symptoms I had was a quavering voice. I’m so grateful they had me see the speech therapist right away after diagnosis. She set me up with Gleason Foundation and ModelTalker. I fiddled around and didn’t get right to recording but I did finish before my voice degraded or before my tongue was involved. I haven’t had to use it yet but it is ready when I do. Please do it right away in hopes that you never have to use it!
Tammy
 
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