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[moj-uh-leyt] /ˈmɒdʒ əˌleɪt/
verb (used with object), modulated, modulating.
to regulate by or adjust to a certain measure or proportion; soften; tone down.
to alter or adapt (the voice) according to the circumstances, one's listener, etc.
  1. to attune to a certain pitch or key.
  2. to vary the volume of (tone).
Telecommunications. to cause the amplitude, frequency, phase, or intensity of (a carrier wave) to vary in accordance with a sound wave or other signal, the frequency of the signal wave usually being very much lower than that of the carrier.
verb (used without object), modulated, modulating.
  1. to modulate a carrier wave.
  2. Citizens Band Radio Slang. to talk; visit:
    Enjoyed modulating with you.
Music. to pass from one key to another:
to modulate abruptly from A to B flat.
Origin of modulate
1550-60; < Latin modulātus (past participle of modulārī to regulate (sounds), set to music, play an instrument). See module, -ate1
Related forms
[moj-uh-luh-bil-i-tee] /ˌmɒdʒ ə ləˈbɪl ɪ ti/ (Show IPA),
modulative, modulatory
[moj-uh-luh-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee] /ˈmɒdʒ ə ləˌtɔr i, -ˌtoʊr i/ (Show IPA),
remodulate, verb (used with object), remodulated, remodulating.
unmodulated, adjective
unmodulative, adjective
well-modulated, adjective
2. temper, control. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for well modulated
Historical Examples
  • His voice was soft, well modulated, and his words carefully chosen.

    The Fourth Watch H. A. Cody
  • He turned, but did not start at the voice, which was soft and well modulated.

    The Sign of the Spider Bertram Mitford
  • When she spoke, although she had little English, her voice was well modulated and remarkably pleasing.

    Jewel Mysteries Max Pemberton
  • His face, handsome and animated, his voice musical and well modulated.

    Dorothy's Tour Evelyn Raymond
  • His voice was full, resonant and well modulated, and he spoke fluently and yet in a measured way that indicated caution.

    The Crime of the Century Henry M. Hunt
  • This “ugly Dutch girl” had a beautiful voice, soft, well modulated, thoroughly refined.

    Aletta Bertram Mitford
  • His voice was pleasant and well modulated, and his delivery remarkably quiet and free from any tricks of gestures.

    Not Like Other Girls Rosa N. Carey
  • Both girls had been well taught, and it was a pleasure to listen to their fresh, well modulated voices.

    The Girl Warriors Adene Williams
  • And yet it was pleasant to hear him speak, his voice was so clear, so well modulated, so intelligent.

    A Crooked Path Mrs. Alexander
  • To her it looked pretty terrible, but her voice was well modulated and pleasing.

    Janet Hardy in Hollywood Ruthe S. Wheeler
British Dictionary definitions for well modulated


(transitive) to change the tone, pitch, or volume of
(transitive) to adjust or regulate the degree of
  1. to subject to or undergo modulation in music
  2. (often foll by to) to make or become in tune (with a pitch, key, etc)
(transitive) (physics, electronics) to cause to vary by a process of modulation
Derived Forms
modulability (ˌmɒdjʊləˈbɪlɪtɪ) noun
modulative, modulatory, adjective
modulator, noun
Word Origin
C16: from Latin modulātus in due measure, melodious, from modulārī to regulate, from modus measure
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for well modulated



1610s, in music, back-formation from modulation, or else from Latin modulatus, past participle of modulari. General sense from 1620s. In telecommunications from 1908. Related: Modulated; modulating.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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well modulated in Science
To vary the amplitude, frequency, or some other characteristic of a signal or power source. See also amplitude modulation, frequency modulation.

The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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