Train and deploy a Custom Speech model

In this article, you'll learn how to train and deploy Custom Speech models. Training a speech-to-text model can improve recognition accuracy for the Microsoft baseline model. You use human-labeled transcriptions and related text to train a model. These datasets, along with previously uploaded audio data, are used to refine and train the speech-to-text model.

Use training to resolve accuracy problems

If you're encountering recognition problems with a base model, you can use human-labeled transcripts and related data to train a custom model and help improve accuracy. Use this table to determine which dataset to use to address your problems:

Use case Data type
Improve recognition accuracy on industry-specific vocabulary and grammar, like medical terminology or IT jargon Related text (sentences/utterances)
Define the phonetic and displayed form of a word or term that has nonstandard pronunciation, like product names or acronyms Related text (pronunciation)
Improve recognition accuracy on speaking styles, accents, or specific background noises Audio + human-labeled transcripts

Train and evaluate a model

The first step to train a model is to upload training data. See Prepare and test your data for step-by-step instructions to prepare human-labeled transcriptions and related text (utterances and pronunciations). After you upload training data, follow these instructions to start training your model:

  1. Sign in to the Custom Speech portal. If you plan to train a model with audio + human-labeled transcription datasets, pick a Speech subscription in a region with dedicated hardware for training.
  2. Go to Speech-to-text > Custom Speech > [name of project] > Training.
  3. Select Train model.
  4. Give your training a Name and Description.
  5. In the Scenario and Baseline model list, select the scenario that best fits your domain. If you're not sure which scenario to choose, select General. The baseline model is the starting point for training. The latest model is usually the best choice.
  6. On the Select training data page, choose one or more related text datasets or audio + human-labeled transcription datasets that you want to use for training.

Note

When you train a new model, start with related text; training with audio + human-labeled transcription might take much longer (up to several days).

Note

Not all base models support training with audio. If a base model does not support it, the Speech service will only use the text from the transcripts and ignore the audio. See Language support for a list of base models that support training with audio data.

Note

In cases when you change the base model used for training, and you have audio in the training dataset, always check whether the new selected base model supports training with audio data. If the previously used base model did not support training with audio data, and the training dataset contains audio, training time with the new base model will drastically increase, and may easily go from several hours to several days and more. This is especially true if your Speech service subscription is not in a region with the dedicated hardware for training.

If you face the issue described in the paragraph above, you can quickly decrease the training time by reducing the amount of audio in the dataset or removing it completely and leaving only the text. The latter option is highly recommended if your Speech service subscription is not in a region with the dedicated hardware for training.

  1. After training is complete, you can do accuracy testing on the newly trained model. This step is optional.
  2. Select Create to build your custom model.

The Training table displays a new entry that corresponds to the new model. The table also displays the status: Processing, Succeeded, or Failed.

See the how-to on evaluating and improving Custom Speech model accuracy. If you choose to test accuracy, it's important to select an acoustic dataset that's different from the one you used with your model to get a realistic sense of the model's performance.

Note

Both base models and custom models can be used only up to a certain date (see Model and endpoint lifecycle). Speech Studio shows this date in the Expiration column for each model and endpoint. After that date request to an endpoint or to batch transcription might fail or fall back to base model.

Retrain your model using the then most recent base model to benefit from accuracy improvements and to avoid that your model expires.

Deploy a custom model

After you upload and inspect data, evaluate accuracy, and train a custom model, you can deploy a custom endpoint to use with your apps, tools, and products.

To create a custom endpoint, sign in to the Custom Speech portal. Select Deployment in the Custom Speech menu at the top of the page. If this is your first run, you'll notice that there are no endpoints listed in the table. After you create an endpoint, you use this page to track each deployed endpoint.

Next, select Add endpoint and enter a Name and Description for your custom endpoint. Then select the custom model that you want to associate with the endpoint. You can also enable logging from this page. Logging allows you to monitor endpoint traffic. If logging is disabled, traffic won't be stored.

Screenshot that shows the New endpoint page.

Note

Don't forget to accept the terms of use and pricing details.

Next, select Create. This action returns you to the Deployment page. The table now includes an entry that corresponds to your custom endpoint. The endpoint’s status shows its current state. It can take up to 30 minutes to instantiate a new endpoint using your custom models. When the status of the deployment changes to Complete, the endpoint is ready to use.

After your endpoint is deployed, the endpoint name appears as a link. Select the link to see information specific to your endpoint, like the endpoint key, endpoint URL, and sample code. Take a note of the expiration date and update the endpoint's model before that date to ensure uninterrupted service.

View logging data

Logging data is available for export if you go to the endpoint's page under Deployments.

Note

Logging data is available for 30 days on Microsoft-owned storage. It will be removed afterwards. If a customer-owned storage account is linked to the Cognitive Services subscription, the logging data won't be automatically deleted.

Next steps

Additional resources