Voice Modulators

Galactic basic droids have diverse and memorable voices. Their unique vocal character comes largely from post-production effects, like D-O’s trademark stutter and low-fi speaker, or a tactical droid’s synthetic, monotone delivery.

These effects traditionally require a combination of manual editing and power-hungry, high-latency software which makes live performance impossible. Existing voice processing apps are slow and low quality. They all have the same limited feature set because they avoid the most complex (and interesting) voice effects.

Human-Cyborg Relations (H-CR) applies modulation effects in realtime. The software is light and highly portable. The latency is so low that the operator can comfortably monitor the output in realtime without a long, disorienting echo.

A raw recording of J.J. Abrams
A tactical droid from The Clone Wars
J.J. modulated by H-CR to sound like a tactical droid
Leia speaking through Boushh's helmet in Episode VI
J.J. modulated by H-CR to sound like he is speaking through Boushh's helmet

On film, D-O speaks Galactic Basic. His sounds are generated by transforming a human voice... namely, that of J.J. Abrams.

H-CR's D-O voice modulator recreates the editing process that the sound designers used. It does so in realtime, in a portable format, with no manual editing required.

A raw recording of J.J. Abrams
D-O from episode IX
J.J. modulated by H-CR to sound like D-O

The modulator includes two main parts. The first is a filter bank that matches the timbre of D-O's voice. This includes a reverse-engineered matching equalizer that was developed by comparing the frequency content of D-O's speech with a high quality raw recording of J.J. Abrams' voice. The second is an adaptive delay chain that recreates D-O's stutter. H-CR is the only realtime voice modulator in the world to feature an effect like this.

To be continued.
With thanks to Disney's Lee Towersey and Michael McMaster.
All proceeds support charity.