History[edit | edit source]
2016[edit | edit source]
While celebrating the 5th anniversary of Yuzuki Yukari it was mentioned that the notion of making the next vocal was brought up. Having released all the planned vocals for Yukari in VOCALOID and VOICEROID, the issue became a more serious one. Bumpy Urushi mentioned in an interview that he had been wanting to do the next vocal for some time, but focus was always on expanding the Yukari vocal before then.
Akari was a secret project and nothing was shown to the public. Each member of the team worked independently, bringing in voice actors and singers to interview which eventually resulted in ten candidates. They noted, as the character and voice would grow, that this would be a long term relationship between the team and the candidate. AH-Software Co. Ltd. provided advice and songs were recorded with temporary voicebanks to test how each candidate sounded within the VOCALOID engine. This was a method seen in developments of other VOCALOIDs such as Yuezheng Ling, Zhanyin Lorra, and Yuezheng Longya. The audition took three days to carry out and resulted in a four day session. Though they knew what they wanted, immediate decisions could not be made. Both VOCALOID and VOICEROID were sampled at the same time to make a overall judgement of the voice. Since AH-Software had seven years of experience of both softwares at the time, the process was fairly efficient overall.
From the beginning, it was made clear that Akari was a different VOCALOID to Yukari. When provisionary voicebanks was made, demo songs were produced to help the development of the VOCALOID along. Ideas, such as titles, began to form. When everyone's opinions were gathered, a overall decision was made. Like Yukari, Akari's voice was made before they considered the character itself.
Madoka Yonezawa, who was chosen to be the provider, had a music background favouring singing and had studied voice acting, both talents of which she was able to use together. She had heard of Hatsune Miku and had an interest in VOCALOID. She became familiar with Kagamine Rin as she went to karaoke with Kumiko Ito, who often sang Rin's songs and eventually performed a Kagamine Len song live. More and more VOCALOID songs appeared, and since DTM noted anyone could write a hit song with VOCALOID, a lot of new unknown talents began appearing. However, voice acting at the time was a largely narrow field and she was confused by some of the information that existed in regards to VOCALOID. It wasn't until Gackt lent his voice to Camui Gackpo that she suddenly considered one day making a VOCALOID herself as he had noted that VOCALOID was no longer just Hatsune Miku and the Kagamines
Madoka Yonezawa did not fear that the existence of a singing and talking voice based on her vocals would deprive her of work as she was seeing a lack of jobs at the time. When she voiced Akari, she imagined the character of "Kizuna Akari" as both a singer and a speaker that could lead to work with anime and video games. She saw the chance to voice Akari as an expansion of work rather then a deprivation for this reason. At the time, she had contact with the head of Vocalomakets. During her audition, she sang only her favourite songs and practiced them. Some of the script was difficult to do and she did not know what certain things were such as what the pitch "Tonkatu" (トーンカツー) meant. She performed with a sort of cutesy vocal and did not know at the time that the recordings were being used to test a VOCALOID, extracting consonants and vowels for the creation of a basic voicebank. The script was not what she expected as she thought she would be recording sounds such as "A" (あ), "I" (い), "U" (う), "Ka" (か), "Ki" (き), "Ku" (く). Her audition was held in November 2016.
2017[edit | edit source]
Madoka Yonezawa was contacted 3 months later and was told it would be judged based on her performance based from "Tonkatu". She was one of ten people whose samples were made into a basic voicebank. When she was informed of the news, she was overjoyed at being chosen and the choice had been made itself fairly quickly.
Different patterns of recording were tried at the time to see what was best. The process of forming the character of the voice was a reverse of the normal voice acting process and the first rough picture of Akari was at hand. In voice acting, the voice was taken and morphed to match the character. In VOCALOID, a voice was to be made to fit with character based on it. The name of the VOCALOID "Kizuna Akari" had already been chosen by recording, but was not yet the finalized name. The type of character she would be was also undetermined as they had to see what work best for Madoka Yonezawa'a voice. She listened to the song, "Red Dragonfly" (赤とんぼ), and picked up what VOCALOID was again. She was embarrassed by her early singing results, but after discussions, the voice that transformed into Akari was fluffy sounding. The voice needed to be narrowed down for this reason, and in total five versions of the voice were made.
Juu Ayakura was asked if they could do the same as they had done with Yukari for Akari's artwork. Listening to the voice of the character and seeing the characters side by side, the name was picked around this time. Since Yukari was based on the moon, they kept the astronomical theme and discussed if Akari should be based on the sun or stars. The name needed to have a story behind it. "紲" meaning "Bond" was problematic for them because it could be mistranslated to "tying people" and they also considered forcing the word "Star" into the name itself. Eventually they decided on a name.
Development of the VOICEROID and VOCALOID took place during the period of September and October, with the VOICEROID recording session taking two days and being done in a method that resembled the provisionary voicebank for VOCALOID. The VOCALOID voice, though already one step ahead the VOICEROID vocal, took a further six days to record, and was why the latter was released ahead of the VOCALOID voice. Another day was taken to record exVoice samples for both. It was originally intended for the two to be released on the same day, but the VOCALOID was taking longer to produce, being four months behind her scheduled release of her VOICEROID2 project.
On November 30, 2017, Vocalomakets and AH-Software officially revealed Akari as a new VOICEROID2 and VOCALOID4 product to the public. Her VOICEROID2 product was confirmed to be released on December 22 that year. It was also mentioned that they were working diligently on her VOCALOID version at the time. Juu Ayakura was revealed to be the illustrator, but the voice provider was not to be revealed until the VOCALOID package was released. Vocalomakets later tweeted that there was no information about Akari's relation to Yukari and only confirmed parts of her biography.
On December 17, Vocalomakets hosted a livestream featuring new Yukari merchandise and three Akari VOCALOID demos. It was revealed that Akari also has exVoice files and that her VOCALOID package was expected to release in 2018.
2018[edit | edit source]
In regards to the exVoice files, the issue with VOCALOID was that consonants felt weak at times or cannot produce alternative consonants. The exVoice for Akari after her VOICEROID was released and was intended to be able to be copied and pasted on the sound track in place of VOCALOID alternatives. The exVoice was recorded in February and was the final addition to the character. Madoka Yonzeawa noted that this process didn't take long and was really fun for her, especially the VOCALOID segment as she was good at certain tones.
On March 29, 2018, Akari's preorder period was launched. It was revealed that she would be available as an individual pack (physical and digital copies), a starter pack, and a dual pack with Yukari. Her release date was confirmed to be April 26, 2018.
On April 13, Akari's trial was made available.
On June 3, Akari's voice provider was revealed. She noted in an interview later that she was overjoyed to have done a VOCALOID as it allowed her to hear the voice singing songs that she herself struggled with as they were too fast.
Product Information[edit | edit source]
Demonstrations[edit | edit source]
|Sprites!☆||Niconico YouTube SoundCloud|
|リナリア (Linaria)||Niconico YouTube|
|あなたと二人で (Anata to Futari De)||Niconico YouTube|
|exVOICE Examples||Niconico YouTube|
|パニジャパーの奇跡 (Panijapaa no Kiseki)||Niconico YouTube SoundCloud|
|星のオーケストラ (Hoshi no Orchestra)||SoundCloud|
|オリオンに願いを (Orion ni Negai o)||SoundCloud|
System Requirements[edit | edit source]
- Windows: Windows 8.1, Windows 8, Windows 7 (32/64bit)
- Mac: OS X 10.8 (or later)
- CPU: Intel Dual Core CPU
- RAM: 2GB or more
- Hard Disk Capacity:
- Standalone package:
- More than 1.5GB (using VOCALOID4 Editor)
- More than 9.5GB (using VOCALOID4 Editor for Cubase + Cubase)
- Starter Pack: More than 1.65GB (using VOCALOID4 Editor)
- Yukari and Akari dual package
- More than 2.5GB (using VOCALOID4 Editor)
- More than 10.4GB (using the VOCALOID4 Editor for Cubase + Cubase)
- Standalone package:
- Internet connection.
Voicebanks[edit | edit source]
| Optimum Range: G2 ~ A4 Optimum Tempo: 70 ~ 190 BPM |
Total Tempo (min-max): 120 BPM No. of Keys: W ~ 16, B ~ 11, Total ~ 27
|Trial/Demo Vers?: Yes Starter Available?: Yes|
|Package details as noted:|
Akari is meant to sound kind and gentle with the intention to portray a cute, bright female voice and under the theme of "starlight".
Her package also comes with an "exVoice" set. There is a voice release for VOICEROID2.
|Vocal traits as noted:|
Kizuna Akari VOCALOID4
|Cross-Synthesis as noted:|
This vocal will register for XSY, however this is a single release voicebank and there are no additional vocals included for her to utilize this function. Therefore users will have to purchase additional voicebanks not belonging to Akari for use of XSY from her XSY group "AHS".
References[edit | edit source]
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