Speak - Free download and software reviews - CNET Download.com

Speak

CNET Editors' review

This program uses the built-in Microsoft speech engine and animated characters to read documents out loud to you. The Microsoft voices are perfectly intelligible, but not particularly pleasant, especially the female ones. We tested only the reading capabilities of Speak, which are fun but not revolutionary. The interface could be improved by adding hot keys to stop reading or control speeds. To read e-mails, you can set the program to skip some symbols, such as quotations. Besides its basic speech functions, Speak can remind you about important events and tell the occasional funny joke. The program doesn't consume much memory, which makes it well-suited as a diversion for home users, especially kids.

Publisher's Description

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All User Reviews
  • All versions:

    3.0 stars

    out of 8 votes

    • 5 star: 1
    • 4 star: 2
    • 3 star: 3
    • 2 star: 0
    • 1 star: 2
  • Current version:

    3.0 stars

    out of 8 votes

    • 5 star: 1
    • 4 star: 2
    • 3 star: 3
    • 2 star: 0
    • 1 star: 2
  • My rating:

    0 stars

    Write review

Results 1-6 of 6

  • 3.0 stars

    "I like the Improvements"

    November 6, 2012  |   By imaverycoolcowboy

    Version: Speak 1.8.84

    Pros

    The program reminds me a lot of the old BONZAI BUDDY which I liked except for the adware and phishing it contained that was its downfall. This contains most of the features without the objectionable stuff.

    The version now has 8 male voices and 2 female voices with Merlin and to them you can adjust speed and pitch. You can make the character almost any size from tiny to huge.''Nicely done!

    Much nicer now

    Cons

    Not any that I can think of... i wish the trial would stay running and let me watch him.. because being burned with Bonzai Buddy phishing my info and then being almost impossible to completely remove from my computer I am LEERY. I have emailed about security issues but still wish I could run him and watch him. That is the only reason I did not give him more stars! I like how he turned out!

    When i close the setting box the program closes.. but as it says this is evaluation only.

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  • 3.0 stars

    "Not bad for a Free Voice application."

    January 12, 2012  |   By Gonzola

    Version: Speak 1.8.84

    Pros

    I'm still working the bugs out, and downloaded another Voice to see if it is a little clearer than the Genie. Although the initial software is small in MB's; you can load it up with the required Control Panel (6MB) and extra Voice you get with the Free version.

    Cons

    The voice is kind of hard to understand even when you increse the speed.

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  • 1.0 stars

    "Doesn't work"

    October 29, 2010  |   By kimada17

    Version: Speak 1.8.84

    Pros

    - nothing I can think of

    Cons

    - The Merlin character could get annoying quickly - especially since it uses a female voice.

    Summary

    The Merlin character was all I could get to work. Guess it's my fault - should have read the system requirements (doesn't mention Vista, and that's what I have). But non-Vista users, take care - the ReadMe file says only Windows 98. There is something later in the installation process (can't remember exactly what) that goes up to XP. But I'm still not sure that robotic voice is worth the trouble.

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  • 3.0 stars

    "It is free & it is Fun."

    December 3, 2009  |   By alhajnasir

    Version: Speak 1.8.84

    Pros

    Good voice & what do you want in free & safe download by cnet.

    Cons

    It dose not read email with out registration.

    Summary

    Free , Fun & safe download by cnet.

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  • 4.0 stars

    "good voice recognition engine"

    March 7, 2006  |   By tkuzz

    Version: Speak 1.8.84

    Pros

    -had diferent voice tone for (!,?)unlike read please

    -auto read clipboard for free

    Cons

    -female voice sounds like chipmunk voice or dwarf voice

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  • 1.0 stars

    "Program is not running at all after installation."

    August 27, 2003  |  

    Version: Speak 1.8.84

    Summary

    After installing the program, it's saying, 'character merlin not found' and then it's saying no other characters are found and not running at all. time waste for downloading.

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Speak