Try Speech Synthesis

Try Speech Synthesis #

MMDAgent-EX by default has two speech synthesis engines, Open JTalk for Japanese and FLite+HTS_Engine for English. They are HMM-based light-weight, small latency engines.

You may prefer another modern synthesis engines. If so, try running it outside and connect via socket or run as sub-module, and feed the synthesized speech data to MMDAgent-EX.

The example content has sample voice models for both engines. This page explains the procedure to test the text-speech function.

Before start #

MMDAgent-EX plays synthesized speech from the default audio output device. Please set the sound device you want to play the speech as the default output device.

Run test #

The dialogue script of the Example content is pre-configured to perform speech synthesis. After the content is launched,

  • Press 1 key to hear Japanese synthesized speech saying “こんにちは!よろしくね!”, along with the lip sync of the CG model.
  • Press 2 key to hear English voice saying “Hello! My name is gene. How can I help you?”.
How it works

The dialogue script waits in the LOOP state after loading the model and motion as shown below. Here, pressing the keys issue the speech synthesis message SYNTH_START.

The engines has different voice name definitions (mei_voice_* for Open JTalk and slt_voice_* for FLite+HTS_Engine), and the matching engine will take action. The voice name definition is in the file main.ojt for Open JTalk and main.fph for FLite+HTS_Engine in the example content.

    <eps> STAGE|images/floor_green.png,images/back_white.png
    <eps> MODEL_ADD|0|gene/Gene.pmd
    MODEL_EVENT_ADD|0  MOTION_ADD|0|base|motions/wait/01_Wait.vmd|FULL|LOOP|ON|OFF
    <eps> CAMERA|0,15.25,0|4.5,0,0|22.4|27.0

    KEY|1 SYNTH_START|0|mei_voice_normal|こんにちは!よろしくね!

    KEY|2 SYNTH_START|0|slt_voice_normal|"Hello! My name is gene. How can I help you?"

Messages to Start Speech Synthesis #

The various modules of MMDAgent-EX, including the synthesis modules, communicate through messages. Below, some messages for speech synthesis is briefly described.

You can see the live message by output log.


The speech synthesis module executes speech synthesis when a SYNTH_START message was issued by other modules. To tell module to start synthesizing speech, issue the following SYNTH_START message.

SYNTH_START|(model alias)|(voice name)|“utterance text.”

The (voice name) specifies the voice name defined in the voice definition file. The .ojt file (defs for Japanese Open JTalk) and .fph file (defs for English FLite+HTS_Engine) with the same prefix of the content .mdf file will be loaded. In the example content, the following names are defined:

# English voice names (FLite+HTS_Engine)
# defined in main.fph

# Japanese voice names (Open JTalk)
# defined in main.ojt

Please enter the synthesizing text in UTF-8.


The voice synthesis module outputs messages in response to internal state changes. It outputs SYNTH_EVENT_START when voice output begins, and SYNTH_EVENT_STOP when the output ends. By monitoring these events, you can trigger actions at the start of the voice and wait for the voice output to finish.

SYNTH_EVENT_START|(model alias)
SYNTH_EVENT_STOP|(model alias)

Try with Any Text via Web interface #

While running MMDAgent-EX, open the following page on the same machine. A textbox connected to MMDAgent-EX will be displayed.

Paste the following message into the textbox and press the Send button. Verify that a synthesized voice is produced.

SYNTH_START|0|slt_voice_happy|“Nice to meet you!”

The Open JTalk module is located in the Plugins subdirectory of the directory containing the executable file, and is named Plugin_Open_JTalk.dll (or .so). The Flite+HTS_Engine is Plugin_Flite_plus_hts_engine.dll (or .so).

The voice models and its voice name configuration files should be prepared on the content side. In the example, voice models are in the voice/mei and voice/slt directory, and the configuration file is main.ojt and main.fph. The configuration file defines the “voice names” specified in the messages.

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