January 22, 2016

Best Free/Paid Mac OS & Windows 10/8/7/xp Text To Speech (TTS) Software Download

As you might’ve guessed by now, that’s what this article is focused on. So let’s jump in, and take a look at 9 of the best text to speech (TTS) software.

  1. Mac OS X’s Text To Speech Feature

    Mac TextToSpeech Apps

    If your OS of choice is Mac OS X, and all you need is basic but extremely solid text to speech (TTS) functionality, you don’t even have to bother with a third party software application, as the OS’ native Text to Speech feature has you covered.

    Enabling Text to Speech in Mac OS X is simple, and takes no more than a few minutes. Here’s how to do it:

    • Go to System Preferences > Dictation & Speech, and select the Text to Speech tab.


    • Enable the Speak selected text when the key is pressed option.


    That’s just about it! Other (optional) settings are available as well, and these can be used to select (after downloading) additional voices, change the speed of speaking, and stuff like that. Once Text to Speech has been configured, you can select any chunk of text and use the configured key combination (Option+Escape) to have the text read out aloud. You can even use it to learn pronunciations of those difficult words. Cool, right?


  2. NaturalReader

    Natural Reader

    NaturalReader supports a diverse array of (textual) file types from which it can read aloud textual content; and can also read the text on webpages. Just enter the source webpage URL, and NaturalReader will take it from there. However, even more impressive is its ability to read aloud text from images and scanned documents, thanks to built-in OCR functionality. NaturalReader includes multiple natural sounding voices, and you can purchase additional voices in different languages (e.g German, Italian, Japanese). With a number of other notable features like voice speed & pitch control, batch conversion of multiple documents to MP3 files NaturalReader, as a TTS software, ticks all the right boxes.

    Platform Availability: Windows 10, 8, 7, Vista, and XP; Mac OS X 10.9 and later

    Price: Paid versions start from $69.50, Free version with limited feature set available


  3. TextAloud

    TextAloud ntipy.blogspot.com

    In more ways than one, TextAloud stands out from the rest of the TTS software applications on this list. Apart from text to speech (TTS) prowess, it also includes features that make it a sort of textual content aggregator.

    TextAloud lets you either read a single textual piece, or collect a number of them together and build a reading playlist. It can automatically grab copied textual content from clipboard. Multiple format support is there, as is the ability to save text as audio. The application comes with an extensive collection of natural sounding voices, and more can be purchased online. Other than that, TextAloud includes a plethora of options such as custom audio tags, insertion and skipping prompts for sections, hotkeys, spell checking, and then some more. In summation, TextAloud scores big with its robust text management options, which make reading out text a breeze.

    Platform Availability: Windows 10, 8, 7, Vista, and XP

    Price: Paid version costs $29.95, 20 days free trial available


  4. Balabolka

    Balabolka

    For those of you who do a lot of reading on the computer, and that too from a variety of files, Balabolka is a must have. What immediately sets it apart is its ability to read aloud from a huge number of file types, with DOCX, DJVU, PDF, EPUB, and RTF just being a few of them. Standard voice parameters like speech, pitch and volume can be adjusted in real-time. Balabolka can directly read aloud the text copied to clipboard, and more importantly, it comes with numerous tools, and these can be used to batch convert files, extract text from audio files, and do a lot more. Apart from English, some of the many languages it supports include Finnish, Greek, Romanian, and Spanish.

    Platform Availability: Windows 10, 8, 7, Vista, and XP

    Price: Free


  5. Zabaware TTS Reader

    Zabaware

    The core functionality of Zabaware TTS Reader involves reading out aloud textual content that’s copied and pasted into the application itself, and can accept textual files as input too. Zabaware TTS Reader comes with quite a collection of voices, and more can be purchased online. Other than that, it can monitor and read clipboard, as well as emails and webpages. Read text can be saved as WAV files. A unique feature of Zabaware TTS Reader is that it can automatically read standard window dialogs such as pop-up boxes, alerting you when they need attention. This makes Zabaware TTS Reader a sort of personal assistant, which is pretty neat if you ask me. That said, format support is fairly limited.

    Platform Availability: Windows 10, 8, 7, Vista, and XP Price: Free


  6. eSpeak

    Espeak TextoSpeech

    Capable software applications don’t really have to be colossal, and eSpeak is the perfect example of that. Measuring in at under 1 MB in size, it’s an insanely featherweight text to speech (TTS) utility that, while not exactly being the most feature loaded, works pretty well for what it is.

    eSpeak has a fairly limited file format support from which it can read aloud text, being limited to just TXT and XML. It comes with a handful of selectable voice choices, and you can alter the pitch and volume. In addition to that, and includes all the basic voice control/reading options, such as pause, skip, and reset. Despite being lightweight, eSpeak surprisingly supports a wide array of languages, such as Cantonese, Estonian, Latvian, Norwegian, and Swedish; and can even work as a command line tool, for all you keyboard nerds out there.

    Platform Availability: Windows 10, 8, 7, Vista, and XP; Mac OS X

    Price: Free

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