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Hey guys,

In coming back to Windows for a bit I am utterly astonished by the absurdity in the TTS market, and especially that resulting from the private arrangements between SR vendors and TTS companies, and--on the other hand--by SAPI synthesisers that require activation.

What, precisely, is the right way to get Eloquence in NVDA on a portable installation. There has to be a simple answer which:

  • doesn't require SAPI

  • doesn't require f***ing activation

  • is guaranteed to operate with the latest version of NVDA at all times

I don't mind stepping on somebody's toes or walking the broad path of evil. If you know of a way, please tell me about it. I'll pay whatever fees are necessary to acquire the license for Eloquence--I have no intention whatever of depriving the licenser his little nugget of gold--but I'm utterly dismayed that there doesn't seem to be a simple way to purchase Eloquence for use on any computer you use for a portable NVDA installation with an existing NVDA driver. So any suggestions are welcome. Any at all. big_smile

Just myself, as usual.

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If I recall and understand it properly, there isn't any approved (legal) way to get eloquence into NVDA. I believe I remember hearing that Nuance change their licensing of Eloquence, the result was that it became no longer possible to use it with NVDA legally unless you go through SAPI and those licenses require activation.

With that being said, try searching the forum for Eloquence, the was a thread a while back that had a download of Eloquence for NVDA in it. As I recall it could be used with both the installed and portable versions.

I used to have it, but when I learned that to use Eloquence with NVDA, you had to pirate it, I removed it and NVDA from my system.

I removed NVDA because I won't use it without Eloquence, it's the most understandable TTS voice I've encountered, and I prefer it above all others.

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Hello;

I use eliquence with NVDA.

If you type in Eliquence NVDA addon in to google; you'll find it.

It might not be legal but I honestly don't care.

Speech symths are getting worse in some cases and better in others. Apples Siri male English and Australian voices are good, while I find other "real sounding" voices to lack inflection.

Thanks for reading,
Brad.

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Isn't there a code factory eloquence and vocalizer combined nvda addon somewhere? Let me see. I don't know how much luck people have with this, simply because I'm using windows xp and not 7, but anyway here is the trial.
http://codefactoryglobal.com/downloads/ … nvda-addon

I'm the only adventure at c: master hahahaha I have unlocked just about everything!

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5

Ahoy all
The eloquence addon brad is talking about works well,most of the times, anyway. I don't have any clue what whent wrong when I last installed it but it wouldn't work, and then I had to get a  addon that actually worked from someone on this forum.
That addon was developed as far as I know because nuance weren't willing to allow nvda developers or what you will to license it or some such bullshit I believe the nvda blog has a post about it too.
Codefactory has 2 eloquence. one is a  vocalizer plus eloquence addon for nvda and the other is sapi5 which doesn't meet your needs at all,of course
The sapi eloquence from what I've read in the faq needs your pc to be connected to the internet for you to use it,else the license expires in 30 days. seriously? first I pay for the product and then I have to keep the dam pc connected to the internet to use that product? great job, codefactory
The point of all that rant is, I have no clue on how the vocalizer plus eloquence addon from code factory works but it might/ could have the same verification limitations
So your best option would be to use the ETI eloquence addon that brad was talking about as long as you end up getting the version that works and isn't broken, like I did. :d
hth

Of all sad words of tongue or pen, the saddest are these, ‘It might have been.
Follow me on twitter

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6

Sigh. So not legal. I thought as much. sad

Thanks guys. I shall experiment with whatever I find on this sacrificial Windows installation. And since a SAPI Eloquence will be useful to me, that's the one I'll grab by way of, er, consideration.

Yes the CodeFactory stuff is what I was alluding to earlier; even the portable version requires fecking activation. Of course, as they are keen to point out, that's not really a problem because the computer ID is the same, so just go back to it and deregister. FFS!

I agree: eSpeak is the killer. I mean, I'm glad it exists, and I'm not going to persecute NVDA for the lack of Eloquence, but equally, for Eloquence not to be freely available at this late stage smacks of greed by Nuance, plain and simple. Especially when it's fairly clear Nuance aren't actually developing the codebase of Eloquence any more. If it were the official synth of NVDA, I imagine the game would be very different, even among advanced users who know better.

Just myself, as usual.

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You can get sapi4 eloquence from http://grossgang.com/tts/sapi_voices/ET … 0sapi4.exe
The eloquence dll files and such clame to be by speechworks international, inc. I think it is rediculess that nuance is complaining about a product that hasn't been in development since 2002.

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Yeah. Nuance just buys up assets and then either incorporates them into their portfolio or completely abandons them. In the latter case, everybody loses.

Just myself, as usual.

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9 (edited by Trenton Goldshark 2015-11-10 11:19:49)

For those who want the "official" NVDA Eloquence/Vocalizer Add-On, grab it here:
http://codefactoryglobal.com/app-store/voices-for-nvda/
Yes folks its both, not just one or the other.

Side Note:
The price on their site is 59 EUR, which translates to 63 USD.
Also, do be aware, its Windows Vista and later.
So, for yall people on XP... Well...

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Hi there,
I personally don't care if the Eloquence add-on I use with NVDA is legal or illegal. After all, it is an add-on, and it is not an application specifically built to be compatible with sappy 5. Moreover sappy 5 voices work slowly. You will need to wait "Half a second" to hear the voice after you press up or down arrow. While eloquence-addon works really fast and it comes close to eSpeak regarding spead. So install eloquence add-on and your life will be gravy. smile

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I use the eloquence addon myself, a version I made modifications to datajake's. This one can pronounce much more things and it also comes with a voice dictionary that patches all crashwords in existance. If you want me to give you guys a link to my version, let me know. Other wise you can get the default without the modifications from grossgang's synths for NVDA section.

----------
Best Regards
Colton

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Rant

The attitude you people have about software piracy and not caring if your software is legal or not, is in part, in my opinion, one of the reasons the audio game market is in such a sad state. Honestly, would you be willing to market a product you've sent a lot of time and effort on if you knew that most people would just steal it from you?

End of rant.

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Actualy, here's the eloquence update nvda addon I made to datajakes, follow the instructions in the readme inside the zip.
https://www.dropbox.com/s/1g8k185arubii … e.zip?dl=1

----------
Best Regards
Colton

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14

Hello all,

Given that it hasn't been updated for 10+ years, and that it still has lots of quite annoying bugs that will ever be fixed, Eloquence should be almost free of charge.
I'm going even further, it should have become open source.

Clearly, Nuance don't deserve earning money for Eloquence. They don't maintain it. They continue obtaining money for it but it doesn't cost anything to them.
They bough it to IBM just to make sure it can no longer be a competitor to their other voices, without any wish to develop it further. They are just capitalist idiots.
Frankly, in this situation, I don't mind pirating.

It could be very different if they kept it in active development. If I know that I can receive support, that bugs and security issues will eventually be fixed, and that the product will continue improving, I don't have any problem paying for software. But here there is no hope. They just wait for it to die.

When you decide to stop support for your product, you should be courageous enough to leave it to users, open source if possible or at least as freeware, and no longer expect earning money for it.
Otherwise, sorry, but it's dishonnest. IF you want to earn money, you must work for it, period.

I would well suggest something to save Eloquence, but it will anyway never work: make a mass petition, collect enough money via crowdfounding and convince Nuance to sel it to us. Probability of success ? <0%, even if we would collect a million.
Because they are stupid f###### capitalists and what they want is profit, not the satistaction of anyone
Note, if one day someone starts an action like this, I would be ready to give 50€ to help achieving it. However, sorry, no, I don't agree to pay 50€ for something no longer maintained, full of bugs crash words that obviously won't be ever fixed, and that virtually restrict me in doing what I want with it (portable installation). And no, I won't pick any other alternative, because they are slower, less clearly understandable, and just because I'm used to Eloquence and I don't see why I would change.

By the way, given that you have less issues with the pirated version than the legally bought one, and that the pirated version is much easier to install, they shouldn't be surprised if their software is cracked (Hi FS, this remark is also for you)
This is a reality: the more constraining piracy protection you put in your software, the more piracy will be attempted. But sadly, nobody is ready to accept it as a fact.

There are 10 kinds of people : those who know binary, and those who don't.

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I agree as far as I don't care of its pirated or not, just like everyone else said, there are still issues with it. So you don't get money from me unless the thing is in active development, or at least active support. God, I could go on for hours how we're getting raked over the coal for these damn voices, anyway, I'll leave it to, I don't care, and yeah.

Friend me on Steam
and follow me on Twitter

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counter rant!
I'm not going to pay money for a synth that isn't really being developed, and has to phone home every month to stay activated. I got burned with this crap on android, never again. Why does a speech synthesizer have to phone home and what happens when the home it insists on phoning doesn't exist anymore. There is literally no reason for this and it's just screwing paying customers over in the long term.
End of counter rant tongue

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@Aminiel:

Unfortunately, I can only upvote your post one time.

I am in total agreement with this. What the hell is wrong with just Open-Sourcing it? Oh, that's right, some idiot customer bought at a very high price and now the rest of us have to suffer because capitalism. Market differentiation. Blah blah. End result: the people get screwed, now and in the future.

I resent paying, but I can't avoid paying either. So I'll pay, then enjoy all the fruits of the pirated product. God, it's sad.

Just myself, as usual.

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Well GeneWarner, while I am in 100% total agreement with your post about piracy, I'm just gonna break it out, this is a special case. Here's the scoop with Nuance, the history of synths it acquired, and nvda and eloquence. This also goes out to everyone here, because it's important to know the gist, what's legal and not about using eloquence in nvda for free. I can see some of you are picking sides while some are may be confused, don't blame you. This is still a contravercial issue with a lot of unstraightened out and confusing bits and pieces so I'll explain as best I can, based on what I know and what has been said. With so much "Eloquence for Nvda is illegal, period," and, "Oh, eloquence is not really illegal, but," floating around, I feel it's important to set the record straight here. Well, two sides to this coin. On the legal side, you may wonder. What goes into the prices of our screen readers? The reason you are able to use eloquence in, say, jaws, Window Eyes, System Access, openbook etc is because the copyright and license notice is in the license agreement for those respective products, such as "This product uses the eti eloquence tts system that contains...bla bla bla" you get the idea. By agreeing to the license you are basically accepting the agreement to that product and all of it's components, including but not limited to the product's own trademarks as well as third-party trademarks mentioned herein. Part of the (ridiculously high) price for jaws goes to Nuance, let's say about $90-to-$200 goes to nuance, for both eloquence and vocalizer. That, is why the synth (s) is bundled with various expensive applications, in deed for those who may remember the primary reason Robert Betz's gamesfortheblind.com games were $20 is because they were bundled with the eloquence speech synthesizer, if it wasn't for that they'd probably be either dirt cheep or completely free as he would've loved them to be. Lots and lots of royalties go to Nuance. Nvda, on the other hand, is a free product. While by using eloquence you are technically not bound to an agreement, remember that the eloquence synthesizer data for the driver was stripped out of a copy of jaws, which in turn was covered by a license agreement. So the user who stripped eloquence out of jaws is, (by some loose legal definition) in violation of the license agreement, and any users who are using eloquence, well they are and they're not violating anything. On one hand, Nuance does not allow eloquence to be used in a nonauthorized means, on the other hand nvda users that just use eloquence never actually signed into any agreement whatsoever, especially future generations of screen reader users who may only know of the existance of nvda. It's just yet another case of Nuance being a money-hogging, competition-devouring, organization-acquiring fatcat. Ok, so here's the deal with Eloquence. Eti eloquence was originally owned and maintained by Eloquent Technologies, incorperated, with IBM licensed to base their Viavoice and viavoice outloud (fs) sapi4 speech synths off of eloquence in their ibm voavoice, with the last company to sell that being Wizard Software. Then Eloquent Technologies were bought out by Nuance. Vocalizer, formerly realspeak, is! made by Nuance, but the original voices were property of Scansoft before Nuance squelched Scansoft. Learnout and Houspy, who as you may know made the truevoice synthesizer as well as the Michael and Michelle voices that shipped with Microsoft Office2003 and Microsoft Reader, were later devoured by Nuance and their former speech recognition technology is now a property of Nuance, although Nuance used nothing from the text to speech side. Loquendo, who made the first voices that could actually cry and laugh and do all kinds of things via a special program but had lots of expression in their sapi varients, lived on strong for 13 years before, guess what? Ding ding ding, that's right, Nuance busted their chops! Long story short, for those of y'all who know your American history, easily compare Nuance as the "Standard Oil Trust" of modern time. I'd hate to see the day, but I can sense it coming, a day when Nuance makes a monopoly outa the entire text to speech industry. Here's another point. As the blog post said, Nv access tried to negotiate a price for nvda users to buy eloquence, but the prices Nuance was offering were inconvenient at best, both for the users and the nvda developers. In addition, Nuance's information to the devs was rather short, ending on no replies from Nuance. Nevertheless, it was easy for them to conclude that they may sell licenses for eloquence on the condition there is strong and sufficient drm copy protection for licensing. First of all, if copy protection were to be implemented, even with the help of commercial drm systems, you know better than probably Nuance themselves that the kind of drm they want would have a limited license use maybe 3 computers, and the eloquence for nvda license data would be stored in the registry. That would mean portable versions of nvda absolutely can't utalize the license, and common sense tells us Nuance would not want the license able to be embedded in portable copies of nvda. Sure, they could encript the license, think of the ilock usb licenses for those familiar with Protools. But all a person would have to do to pass it on is for that person to give their portable copy to someone else. So Nuance would basically be screwing over portable users of nvda. Can't rule out the people who are using portable copies of nvda. Second, how they could expect a group of open-source programmers to program a drm protection system that is up to par with something like Starforce Proactive, Themida, you name it is completely beyond me. Even if they used one of those leading commercial drm systems like Starforce Proactive, or Themita, or whatever system out there, that's quite an investment. Sure, it may be easy to use, but there are expensive strings attached. Let's take Starforce for an example. The low-cost version of the drm system supports only one method, "buy only" license. What about the people who wanna try Eloquence out before buying? The Starforce Proactive Advanced version basically the pro version, in addition to the buy only method, supports 3 other methods. Demo: restricts certain functionality of the program that can only be accessed if a registration key is obtained via purchasing a license, but the program itself doesn't expire.
Trial: Allows the software to be tried on a companies own terms. When the trial expires, obviously, a license must be purchased.
Try and Die: Allows the software in it's entirety to be tried without paying for a license. After the end of that period of trying the software, the program will no longer run. Sounds ok, but wait, you haven't heard the good part! Running the license server? Costs money. Paying for the service? Again, an investment. And sense these devs obviously wanna keep Nvda free, if they went off donations they wouldn't be able to keep a system like that running, much less program their own. Opensource implies no drm, the files can be freely modified don't Nuance get it? And that, is why Nuance were initially reluctant to work with Tiflotechnia, the devs of Vocalizer for nvda, for this very reason. I'm not gonna encourage this, or make a specific guide on how to do this, but the Vocalizer for nvda addon seems tough to crack on the outside with the strong license check, but it's so damn easy to strip out the registration! Look at the addon, there's the full readable sourcecode inside of it doesn't Nuance get it? Tiflotechnia is probably aware of this and were probably warned intensely that there'd be a multitude of cracks handed out, and that there was. Nuance, however, doesn't give a crap and makes them charge anyway, dispite the fact that the program can be so easily dooped. I'm sure Tiflotechnia are, while certainly not approving, a bit more tolerable to the cracks than Nuance is. In fact Nuance probably doesn't even care. All they care about is that Tiflotechnia is paying for licenses regularly. So, it's a lot of ignurance on Nuance's end, remember. Blind confidence, is what they have. Disappointing. Back to Eloquence, the closest thing to a reasonable and successful eloquence addon sold by nv access, would've been a version of ibm viavoice that Nv Access would use, having later figured out a workaround to using the registry so that the license may run on portable versions. However, after contacting Wizard Software to arrange a pricing model, Wizard Software told them the product was to be discontinued and there was then no way to obtain it. So there you go, I hope that straightens it out a bit. I know Nuance would hate me for this, but oh well I don't care what they'd think.

I'm the only adventure at c: master hahahaha I have unlocked just about everything!

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Now, bringing this back to the future, since it seems folks missed my original posting of it, here's link to the newer NVDA Eloquence/Vocalizer Add On:
http://codefactoryglobal.com/app-store/voices-for-nvda/

As I wonder, how many folks wil pay?
Even if NVDA is donated %10 of the price?

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I guess I won't be, sense it ain't gonna work on windows xp. But that would be something to suggest to code factory. Eloquence sapi worked on windows xp. Nevertheless, the strong drm is a bit intrusive, of course. I can't wait for nuance to get a review on the Defective by Design website.
lol

I'm the only adventure at c: master hahahaha I have unlocked just about everything!

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ahoy all

Aminiel wrote:

By the way, given that you have less issues with the pirated version than the legally bought one, and that the pirated version is much easier to install, they shouldn't be surprised if their software is cracked (Hi FS, this remark is also for you)
This is a reality: the more constraining piracy protection you put in your software, the more piracy will be attempted. But sadly, nobody is ready to accept it as a fact.

+1

as for Would I pay for the eloquence vocalizer addon? At least I wouldn't. A free alternative already exists that being the nvda eloquence addon and I myself am quite happy with it. even if there were no nvda eloquence addon I still would not buy it from CF as it stands now. I think Exodus put it right

what happens when the home it insists on phoning doesn't exist anymore

The prices at which these things are sold at are a bit too much for me, but still now and then if I like the product enough I end up buying them I.E ivona voices, but I certainly wouldn't buy  a product no matter how good it was if it insisted on my device being connected to the internet even though its once in a month. what happens if the company that' sold you the product decides to close up?(like ivona)
the money gos down the drain. For some that might not be that much of a issue,but for me it certainly is.

It is a good thing that for the ivona voices and reader all you need to do is have a key and setup to register and it doesn't have to call home every 30 days to stay active,either.
Is a crack for ivona voices available? I.E can they be pirated? you bet they can be. Will more people end up buying ivona than a product with stupid registration and activation? I at least would be one of them.
To companys like CF who put in such a system for activation all I have to say is this.
People who pirate will pirate you can't do nothing about that, some can't pay so they wouldn't be your potential customers anyway,some would rather not and just look for a pirated version or just do without again not the type of people that'd buy your product, aye some would have bought that product but sinse a pirated version is available they would do without buying. In this you lose sales, true but if you have a terrible registration method many people that would've actually bought your product would rather not buy it and deal with a system that's to put it lightly a pain in the arse.
grryf

Of all sad words of tongue or pen, the saddest are these, ‘It might have been.
Follow me on twitter

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Ivona folded, did they? Well, that would certainly explain a lot.

But yes indeed, the principle issue with any activation scheme, or indeed any proprietary software, is that once the vendor buggers off into the sunset, there is no hope for the owner of the product.

@Trenton: activation. The add-on--even when running portable--requires activation. sad

Interesting and amusing: top hit for Google on "Eloquence NVDA" (for me, while signed out, anyway) is this NVDA ticket. LOL! Must do a lot to inspire confidence, that.

And for another take on the real impact that TTS has on switching screen readers there is this very interesting paper.

Finally, the comments alluding to a (somewhat lame, IMO, but still relevant) discussion about NVDA+Eloquence are referring to this here blog posting (Google cache).

The only long-term solution is thus to move away from Eloquence. But where? NV Speech Player is merely a prototype, but we could do worse than to endorse its continued development. It will be FLOSS, and as we know, that is the only way ahead.

Just myself, as usual.

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So I have tried both the "official" and "unofficial" versions of Eloquence and I can tell you the "official" one has some slight problems that the unofficial one doesn't. Nothing that would be a showstopper mind you, but there's a few things to note.

First, I don't know what kind of background processes the code factory Eloquence is running, but just like any kind of Vocaliser, I have seen it stutter and cut out when the computer is under load, like for example when just booting up. That's on a first generation core I5 at 3.4 GHZ. It also takes a very long time for NVDA to start at first when using it, probably due to the activation check. With the unofficial driver, it loads NVDA normally, and I've never seen it stutter. Yes, it does pause between speech chunks because NVDA isn't reacting fast enough, but the speech never broke up.
I have also seen the pitch get stuck a few times after reading a capital letter, so you'd have to mess with it to get it back. You also can't change the voice as easily - the only speech setting you have is "voice" for the language, while if you want to change the variant (Reed, Shelly, etc), you have to launch their configuration app and change it there. The inflection setting is also missing completely.

The twins of Mammon quarrelled. Their warring plunged the world into a new darkness, and the beast abhorred the darkness. So it began to move swiftly, and grew more powerful, and went forth and multiplied. And the beasts brought fire and light to the darkness. - from The Book of Mozilla, 15:1

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Eep!
Now that, is, bad!

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Just to remind you all that it isn't necessarily Code Factory's choice to make drm. I'm sure if they were given a chance to go drm free, they'd consider it. Nuance is forcing it on them, because Nuance want the frickin revenue. It's just that code factory has had experience with drm in the past , that's why they were so willing to jump on the bandwagon and use a commercial drm system.

I'm the only adventure at c: master hahahaha I have unlocked just about everything!

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