Asked February 17 2015

Community Question

Hey guys.

I have asked this question in another thread, but I decided to create a new "assistance required" thread as my issue relates to Windows 8, where as the other thread was really related to Windows 7, plus I'm still having problems. I really hope someone can help with this.

The issue

I'm in the middle of a transition from moving from a Win 7 to Win 8 laptop, and I'm having a real pain in the butt issue using speech synthesis voices with the new Windows 8 machine and new EZ-Builder install.

As Richard may remember, I mentioned in the other thread that I copied the .exe file for a Cepstral voice from my Win 7 machine, reinstalled it on to the Win 8 laptop, and added the activation key. The voice worked on Narrator and other 3rd party apps such as screen readers, but it never worked on EZ Builder so I thought that was the problem. I have since reset the laptop back to the "Out of the box" state, and started again.

My new Windows 8 Toshiba Satellite laptop comes with three pre-installed voices, but only one of them works with EZ Builder. I have installed a fresh version of a trial Cepstral voice and a 30 day trial of an Ivona voice, and neither one works with EZ-Builder either.

I have tried each and every variation of the "Speech synthesis" settings for each voice and they have made no difference whatsoever, and keeps using the one Windows voice. The only thing that does change is the "Rate".

Have any of you guy's faced this issue with Windows 8, and/or does anyone know what can be done so I can use the voices I want to use? I really want to get this working and I don't see why I'm having these problems, as using Cepstral with EZ Builder on Windows 7 was no problem at all. Please help. *confused*

Many thanks.

Steve. :)
February 28 2015

When I opened C:\Windows\Speech\Engines\TTS\en-GB, I deleted the four files I had one by one.


Technically Hazel (the four files above) isn't out looking for a new job just yet, but she has been banished and resides in the recycle bin at the moment. To get the Cepstral effects working on EZ Builder....

Open your (c: ) drive,

Then Program files,



Copy the effect you want to use,

Go back to cepstral,


Open "Lawrence" file,

Paste the sfx file,

Rename the effect to "default.sfx",

And that should be it. Open EZ Builder and Lawrence should use the effect. Hope that helps Alan. :)
February 28 2015
Awesome Steve.

So Microsoft has really borked up Sapi, but at least we have workarounds.

February 28 2015
That worked great (copying the effect file). I'll probably wind up using dizzy droid or pvc pipe so that our K9's will sound like cousins instead of twins. I'll write a little batch file to make it easier to switch until I make up my mind.

February 28 2015
No worries Alan. Pleased you got it sorted. I use the PVC pipe effect with my little fella. He's just happy he can talk again (& so am I). :D
December 16 2015

A couple of weeks ago, I upgraded to Windows 10 from 8.1. While troubleshooting somebody else's EZ Builder project, I found that this same issue occurs. The new OS install reinstalled the Hazel files which had to be deleted again. It was a simple case of copying and pasting C:\Windows\Speech\Engines\TTS\en-GB in to the "Cortana" taskbar search window, and deleting the files again.

The Tutorial On Fixing Voice Synthesis Problem With Windows 8.1 and 10 has been updated to show this.