Votrax Type 'N Talk


The Votrax Type 'N Talk was a speech synthesiser produced in the 1980s. It connected to a variety of home computers using an RS-232 interface and translated text into speech.

The Type 'N Talk was capable of correctly interpreting the pronunciation of simple words ("Cat" vs "Cell" for example), more complex words needed to be spelled out using their basic speech building blocks called allophones.

Implementation Details

The Type 'N Talk was a microcomputer containing a dedicated speech sythesizer. The essential components of the system are:

Reverse Engineering

A summary of the commands used to control the Type 'N Talk has been produced:


From the circuit diagram a memory map has been produced:


A description of the text to phoneme translation process has been produced:


A dissassembly of the ROM has been produced:


A dump of the rule sets has been produced:



To assist in the dissassembly process a simulator of the system has been written in Python:

Simulator archive


Type 'N Talk User's Manual

The Votrax Type N Talk (unpotting)

Automatic Translation of English Text to Phonetics by Means of Letter-to-Sound Rules

Votrax CMOS Phoneme Speech Sythesizer

SP0256 NARRATOR Speech Processor

SP0256A-AL2 speech synthesizer chips: Genuine vs Counterfeit

An FPGA implementation of a classic 80ies speech synthesizer.