Meaning of formant in English:


Pronunciation /ˈfɔːm(ə)nt/


  • Each of several prominent bands of frequency that determine the phonetic quality of a vowel.

    ‘You don't have to parse the sentences or measure vowel formants or anything time consuming, so the empirical part of the research just took a few minutes.’
    • ‘Chapter Four discusses the resonant voice and includes information about the singer's timbre, the open throat, voice placement and vowel formants.’
    • ‘The results are plotted in the traditional way, with the second formant on the horizontal axis and the first formant on the vertical axis, both plotted so that the origin is (in effect) in the upper right-hand corner.’
    • ‘The best part is that pitching around while preserving the formants does really, really interesting things to the timbre of a voice: you can sound like a totally different person and still sound human.’
    • ‘This singing formant also aids the opera singer by standing out above the typical orchestral accompaniment.’


Early 20th century coined in German from Latin formant- ‘forming’, from the verb formare.