How should I use Vocular?
To get the best results out of Vocular, please do the following:
- Find a quiet room with no echo and no one else speaking.
- Tap the V button to start taking a sample. The red band should start to jump out as it detects frequencies.
- Speak for about 30 seconds. Try and do this naturally, as if talking to a friend.
- Once you feel you’ve said enough. Tap the button again to end the recording. The V should start pulsating as it calculates your results.
What results should I want to get from Vocular?
Things are more surprising when vocal variance is considered though. On the one hand, men with monotone voices are seen as being more dominant and report more sexual partners. On the other hand, a more varied voice seems to be more engaging. So there’s a strange ‘bedroom and boardroom’ effect – you want to be able to ramp up the variety when giving a speech, but cut it down on dates.
Can people really deepen their voices?
Yes. Margaret Thatcher most famously did, as you can see in this YouTube clip.
Actors like Morgan Freeman and Matthew McConaughey have also talked about the same thing. In fact, Freeman cited learning to lower his pitch as the first major step he took towards becoming an actor.
How do you deepen your voice?
I’ve written a pretty extensive list of methods in this post – but to give a bitesize version of it, you want to stretch and strengthen your neck muscles, breathe from the diaphragm and learn to speak with a descended larynx.
But isn’t this all about the length and thickness of your vocal chords?
Not really. It’s true that the length and thickness of your vocal chords do affect the depth of your voice, but these are not the only factors. If they were, you’d be unable to change the pitch of your voice at all, higher or lower.
Tension is also a big factor in determining your voice depth. This is why your morning voice is usually significantly deeper than your voice at, say, 3pm – your neck is relaxed from hours of sleep. And the good news is, this is something you can learn to control with a range of techniques. But don’t take our word for it, take Morgan Freeman’s.
There’s also a psychological point that needs to be made here. Most guys aren’t speaking at the baseline of their vocal chords. Through a desire to seem friendly or non-threatening, people adopt a higher tone of voice in social situations, and this voice becomes ‘stuck’ over time, displacing their more natural one. So a lot of it boils down to bad habits, but again, listen to Morgan Freeman…
This isn’t to say that there’s no physiological limit on the depth of your voice – there is. Jennifer Aniston is never going to sound like Barry White (no matter how much she dearly wants to). But what this does say is that the determinist idea that ‘you’re stuck with the voice you have’ is equally wrong.
Does Vocular accept responsibility for any injury sustained in using the app?
Why does my voice sound deeper to me than Vocular says it is?
There are three reasons for this. Firstly, when you hear your voice as you speak, you hear it not only through your ear drums (as everyone else does) but through vibrations in your skull, which makes your pitch sound lower to you than it does to everybody else.
Secondly, your physical size may have something to do with it. A study found that taller and heavier men are less capable of judging voice depth compared to less physically imposing individuals
Why don’t I sound like any of my matches?
How does the voice depth calculation work?
In most scenarios, the voice depth calculation works simply by taking your lowest frequency of which they are 5 or more instances. Thus, your voice depth result is the deepest significant frequency you speak at.
However, there are complications. Many women speak with a register called ‘vocal fry’ – this is that low, creaky sound, particularly common in young American women like Kim Kardashian or Anna Kendrick. Vocal fry occupies a territory between 75Hz and 110Hz for women, and so it needs removing from the results. If we didn’t, a lot of women would get reported as having voices as deep as Morgan Freeman.
So, if a voice has an average frequency above 130Hz, it’s assumed that vocal fry will interfere with the analysis, and frequencies below 112Hz are excluded. This works in most cases but there are still two shortcomings: it doesn’t always remove vocal fry (for example, if the person’s average pitch is below 130Hz) and it sometimes means that men who speak with a high vocal variance get reported as having a voice depth of 112Hz, when it’s probably deeper.
How are the celebrity matches calculated?
I’m a man with a deep voice. Why do I match with some women more than some men?
Why are people as famous as Johnny Depp, Christian Bale, Tom Hardy etc. excluded from the database?
The idea of the celebrity matches is to give users around the globe some kind of grounding of their voice depth – it’s more helpful to know that your top match is Barack Obama than it is to see that your voice depth is 80Hz, at least in the beginning. This is why actors make up most of the celebrities in the database; people around the world are familiar with their voices, and immediately have a point of reference when they see their faces.