Eigenvoice Speaker Adaptation via Composite Kernel Principal Component Analysis

Part of Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 16 (NIPS 2003)

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James Kwok, Brian Mak, Simon Ho


Eigenvoice speaker adaptation has been shown to be effective when only a small amount of adaptation data is available. At the heart of the method is principal component analysis (PCA) employed to find the most im- portant eigenvoices. In this paper, we postulate that nonlinear PCA, in particular kernel PCA, may be even more effective. One major challenge is to map the feature-space eigenvoices back to the observation space so that the state observation likelihoods can be computed during the estima- tion of eigenvoice weights and subsequent decoding. Our solution is to compute kernel PCA using composite kernels, and we will call our new method kernel eigenvoice speaker adaptation. On the TIDIGITS corpus, we found that compared with a speaker-independent model, our kernel eigenvoice adaptation method can reduce the word error rate by 28–33% while the standard eigenvoice approach can only match the performance of the speaker-independent model.