The Montreal Affective Voices: a validated set of nonverbal affect bursts for research on auditory affective processing

Behav Res Methods. 2008 May;40(2):531-9. doi: 10.3758/brm.40.2.531.


The Montreal Affective Voices consist of 90 nonverbal affect bursts corresponding to the emotions of anger, disgust, fear, pain, sadness, surprise, happiness, and pleasure (plus a neutral expression), recorded by 10 different actors (5 of them male and 5 female). Ratings of valence, arousal, and intensity for eight emotions were collected for each vocalization from 30 participants. Analyses revealed high recognition accuracies for most of the emotional categories (mean of 68%). They also revealed significant effects of both the actors' and the participants' gender: The highest hit rates (75%) were obtained for female participants rating female vocalizations, and the lowest hit rates (60%) for male participants rating male vocalizations. Interestingly, the mixed situations--that is, male participants rating female vocalizations or female participants rating male vocalizations--yielded similar, intermediate ratings. The Montreal Affective Voices are available for download at (Resources section).

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Validation Study

MeSH terms

  • Acoustic Stimulation / methods
  • Acoustic Stimulation / standards*
  • Adult
  • Affect*
  • Auditory Perception*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Recognition, Psychology*
  • Reference Standards
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Sensitivity and Specificity
  • Sex Factors