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formant

[fawr-muh nt] /ˈfɔr mənt/
noun
1.
Music. the range and number of partials present in a tone of a specific instrument, representing its timbre.
2.
Acoustic Phonetics. one of the regions of concentration of energy, prominent on a sound spectrogram, that collectively constitute the frequency spectrum of a speech sound. The relative positioning of the first and second formants, whether periodic or aperiodic, as of the o of hope at approximately 500 and 900 cycles per second, is usually sufficient to distinguish a sound from all others.
Origin
1900-1905
1900-05; < Latin formant- (stem of formāns), present participle of formāre to form; see -ant
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for formant

formant

/ˈfɔːmənt/
noun
1.
(acoustics, phonetics) any of several frequency ranges within which the partials of a sound, esp a vowel sound, are at their strongest, thus imparting to the sound its own special quality, tone colour, or timbre
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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