Reservoir Computing: a powerful Black-Box Framework for Nonlinear Audio Processing

Georg Holzmann
Conference paper

Proc. of the 12th Int. Conference on Digital Audio Effects (DAFx-09)


This paper proposes reservoir computing as a general framework for nonlinear audio processing.
Reservoir computing is a novel approach to recurrent neural network training with the advantage of a very simple and linear learning algorithm. It can in theory approximate arbitrary nonlinear dynamical systems with arbitrary precision, has an inherent temporal processing capability and is therefore well suited for many nonlinear audio processing problems. Always when nonlinear relationships are present in the data and time information is crucial, reservoir computing can be applied.

Examples from three application areas are presented: nonlinear system identification of a tube amplifier emulator algorithm, nonlinear audio prediction, as necessary in a wireless transmission of audio where dropouts may occur, and automatic melody transcription out of a polyphonic audio stream, as one example from the big field of music information retrieval.
Reservoir computing was able to outperform state-of-the-art alternative models in all studied tasks.