Scoring-based ML estimation and CRBs for reverberation, speech, and noise PSDs in a spatially homogeneous noise field

Yaron Laufer, Sharon Gannot

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Hands-free speech systems are subject to performance degradation due to reverberation and noise. Common methods for enhancing reverberant and noisy speech require the knowledge of the speech, reverberation and noise power spectral densities (PSDs). Most literature on this topic assumes that the noise power spectral density (PSD) matrix is known. However, in many practical acoustic scenarios, the noise PSD is unknown and should be estimated along with the speech and the reverberation PSDs. In this article, the noise is modeled as a spatially homogeneous sound field, with an unknown time-varying PSD multiplied by a known time-invariant spatial coherence matrix. We derive two maximum likelihood estimators (MLEs) for the various PSDs, including the noise: The first is a non-blocking-based estimator, that jointly estimates the PSDs of the speech, reverberation and noise components. The second MLE is a blocking-based estimator, that blocks the speech signal and estimates the reverberation and noise PSDs. Since a closed-form solution does not exist, both estimators iteratively maximize the likelihood using the Fisher scoring method. In order to compare both methods, the corresponding Cramér-Rao Bounds (CRBs) are derived. For both the reverberation and the noise PSDs, it is shown that the non-blocking-based CRB is lower than the blocking-based CRB. Performance evaluation using both simulated and real reverberant and noisy signals, shows that the proposed estimators outperform competing estimators, and greatly reduce the effect of reverberation and noise.

Original languageEnglish
Article number8878142
Pages (from-to)61-76
Number of pages16
JournalIEEE/ACM Transactions on Audio Speech and Language Processing
StatePublished - 2020

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2014 IEEE.


  • Cramér-Rao Bound
  • dereverberation
  • maximum likelihood estimation
  • noise reduction


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