Arduino Technology
New in the Maker Shed: Parallax Emic 2 Text-to-Speech Module

This unassuming little board can give your project the power of speech! Parallax’s new Emic 2 Text-to-Speech Module (now available in the Maker Shed) is an easy to use speech synthesis board capable of speaking both English and Spanish. You simply pass it text or numbers over serial and it converts them into a natural sounding voice. Project possibilities include talking GPS units, clocks, thermometers, timers, or giving your robot a voice. You can even have it read your e-mail or twitter feeds! It’s easy to hook up to an Arduino, runs on 5V, and only uses up two data pins for serial communication. Just plug in a speaker and you’ll have your projects talking in no time. Here’s a video demonstration by Joe Grand, creator of the Emic 2.


  • High-quality speech synthesis for English and Spanish languages
  • Nine pre-defined voice styles comprising male, female, and child
  • Dynamic control of speech and voice characteristics, including pitch, speaking rate, and word emphasis
  • Industry-standard DECtalk text-to-speech synthesizer engine (5.0.E1)

I am the Evangelist for the Maker Shed. It seems that there is no limit to my making interests. I'm a tinkerer at heart and have a passion for solving problems and figuring out how things work. When not working for Make I can be found falling off my unicycle, running in adverse weather conditions, skiing down the nearest hill, restoring vintage motorcycles, or working on my car.

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