• synonyms


[fawr-muh nt]
  1. Music. the range and number of partials present in a tone of a specific instrument, representing its timbre.
  2. Acoustic Phonetics. one of the regions of concentration of energy, prominent on a sound spectrogram, that collectively constitute the frequency spectrum of a speech sound. The relative positioning of the first and second formants, whether periodic or aperiodic, as of the o of hope at approximately 500 and 900 cycles per second, is usually sufficient to distinguish a sound from all others.
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Origin of formant

1900–05; < Latin formant- (stem of formāns), present participle of formāre to form; see -ant
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for formant

Historical Examples of formant

  • L'attaque fut formée en colonnes par échelons de régiment, Bachelu formant les échelons les plus avancés.

    The Life of Napoleon I (Volumes, 1 and 2)

    John Holland Rose

  • "See the pretty Formant looking quite common next to her," said the first.

British Dictionary definitions for formant


  1. acoustics phonetics any of several frequency ranges within which the partials of a sound, esp a vowel sound, are at their strongest, thus imparting to the sound its own special quality, tone colour, or timbre
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Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012