gkreidl
Posts: 6345
Joined: Thu Jan 26, 2012 1:07 pm
Location: Germany

HOWTO: use Mbrola voices with espeak (TTS)

Sat May 14, 2016 2:07 am

espeak has support for Mbrola voices, which are way better than the default voices, at least for some languages (not for English, though). Many Mbrola voices are in the Raspbian repository, but you cannot install them, because they depend on the mbrola package and that is not available. A Raspberry Pi binary is available from http://tcts.fpms.ac.be/synthesis/ but it doesn't help with the dependencies.

So I created a Raspbian package for installation:

Code: Select all

wget http://steinerdatenbank.de/software/mbrola3.0.1h_armhf.deb
sudo dpkg -i mbrola3.0.1h_armhf.deb
It's just a Debian wrapper for the original binary (including copyright information etc.)

Now you can install all the Mbrola voices you need from the repository. For use with espeak Mbrola voice names use the prefix "mb-" followed by the Mbrola voice name, e. g. "mb-en1" or "mb-de6" (the best German voice).

Pulseaudio must be available and running. ALSA output is broken.

Mbrola binary and the voices are free to use, but not open source.
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mitchind
Posts: 40
Joined: Sat Jul 02, 2016 1:11 am

Re: HOWTO: use Mbrola voices with espeak (TTS)

Tue Oct 11, 2016 2:08 am

Just a short note to say thanks for doing this.
I just found your post and it saved me from a LOT of work trying to figure out how to get those voices

Thanks

plagasul
Posts: 8
Joined: Mon Dec 12, 2016 12:20 am

Re: HOWTO: use Mbrola voices with espeak (TTS)

Mon Dec 12, 2016 12:46 am

Hello, I followed another path and will share here in case someone finds this post looking for solutions, as it happened to me.

I followed a mix of instructions from two sources:

An html doc from espeak;
/usr/share/doc/espeak/docs/mbrola.html (assuming you have espeak installed)

A script to use mbrola with festival, that I found at github;
https://gist.github.com/fabianosarracco ... 0bb53809f3

Instructions:

-Obtain mbrola rpi binary from http://www.tcts.fpms.ac.be/synthesis/mb ... mbrola.tgz
-Uncompress and copy to /usr/bin/
-Create the folder /usr/share/mbrola/
-Get voices from http://www.tcts.fpms.ac.be/synthesis/mb ... pybin.html
-Uncompress, enter the voice folder and move the main file named such as "es1" "mx2" etc, to /usr/share/mbrola/

That's it.

I am using the voices as such:

Code: Select all

 espeak -v mb-vz1 "lorem ipsum"
..where the voice needs to be written as "mb-name" instead of "name" ( "es1" becomes "mb-es1")

A note!: I am getting choppy sound output with all the spanish voices except "es2". I am not sure if this is related to ALSA, as it is mentioned in the original post, because both "es2" and the original espeak voices work well (although I am getting lots of ALSA errors).

I am running a rpi 3 model B with Raspbian Jessie.

Hope it helps
Last edited by plagasul on Sun Jan 15, 2017 10:27 pm, edited 2 times in total.

gkreidl
Posts: 6345
Joined: Thu Jan 26, 2012 1:07 pm
Location: Germany

Re: HOWTO: use Mbrola voices with espeak (TTS)

Mon Dec 12, 2016 8:18 am

Obviously you missed the point of the OP. The voices are available from the Raspbian repository, but cannot be installed because mbrola itself is not available as a Raspbian package. By wrapping the official armhf mbrola binary into a Raspbian package I have fixed this issue.
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plagasul
Posts: 8
Joined: Mon Dec 12, 2016 12:20 am

Re: HOWTO: use Mbrola voices with espeak (TTS)

Tue Dec 20, 2016 1:56 am

Hello, I think I understand the point of the OP, and congratulate you on the effort.

But, as I was looking for info on "how to use mbrola voices with espeak" and found this post, I thought: let's add another way to use MBROLA voices with espeak.

So, in case someone, as it happened to me, finds this. That person has, then, more info on how to do it.

I hope that was ok.

Thank you!

gkreidl
Posts: 6345
Joined: Thu Jan 26, 2012 1:07 pm
Location: Germany

Re: HOWTO: use Mbrola voices with espeak (TTS)

Tue Dec 20, 2016 3:48 am

plagasul wrote:Hello, I think I understand the point of the OP, and congratulate you on the effort.

But, as I was looking for info on "how to use mbrola voices with espeak" and found this post, I thought: let's add another way to use MBROLA voices with espeak.

So, in case someone, as it happened to me, finds this. That person has, then, more info on how to do it.

I hope that was ok.

Thank you!
I don't mind offering other ways to install mbrola, but why did you start your post with
Hello, as the initial post was old and I was unsure if the binary would work at all ...
?
Minimal Kiosk Browser (kweb)
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Optional fullscreen kiosk mode and command interface for embedded applications
Includes omxplayerGUI, an X front end for omxplayer

plagasul
Posts: 8
Joined: Mon Dec 12, 2016 12:20 am

Re: HOWTO: use Mbrola voices with espeak (TTS)

Sun Jan 15, 2017 10:27 pm

Oops, that must have been a mistake on my part, possibly misread the date or mixed two different posts. I'll edit now. Apologies.

aardvarko
Posts: 6
Joined: Fri Mar 23, 2018 12:24 am

Re: HOWTO: use Mbrola voices with espeak (TTS)

Fri Oct 02, 2020 1:41 am

what would it take to get this mbrola package added to the Raspbian apt repos?

I know this is an old thread--the package still isn't available four years later :)

gkreidl
Posts: 6345
Joined: Thu Jan 26, 2012 1:07 pm
Location: Germany

Re: HOWTO: use Mbrola voices with espeak (TTS)

Fri Oct 02, 2020 4:37 am

aardvarko wrote:
Fri Oct 02, 2020 1:41 am
what would it take to get this mbrola package added to the Raspbian apt repos?

I know this is an old thread--the package still isn't available four years later :)
Probably because it is not open source. You can download it from here (for Buster):

https://packages.debian.org/buster/armh ... a/download
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