Chinese Pinyin Translator and Pronunciation Dictionary
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Phonetic Transcription Can Help You Improve Your Chinese Pronunciation
Chinese pronunciation can be confusing for people who are just starting to learn Chinese. The official system to transcribe Chinese characters into Latin script is hanyu pinyin, but there are alternatives that some people find more effective for learning how to pronounce Chinese words.
This online pinyin translator can convert Chinese text into seven different formats. All of them follow the pronunciation rules of standard Mandarin Chinese. Note that some of the formats are available only if you click "Show advanced options".
- Pinyin with tone marks (pīnyīn) – the most common way to transcribe Chinese characters
- Pinyin with tone numbers (pin1yin1)
- Pinyin without tone marks (pinyin) – this method can be used for memorizing the tones
- Hanzi with tone marks (拼音) – this method will help you memorize the pronunciation of individual sounds
- Colored hanzi āáǎàa (拼音) – a variation on the fourth method
- International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) with tone numbers (pʰin1jin1) – this method is useful for people studying Chinese at university
This tool will serve as a Chinese pronunciation guide and will help you save time. You will no longer need to look up the pronunciation of Chinese words in a dictionary. If you use the phonetic transcription regularly in combination with Chinese audio and video recordings, your pronunciation and listening skills in the Chinese language will improve.
The converter understands both simplified and traditional characters.
A special option corrects tones for 一, 不. As you may know, the pronunciation of these two characters changes depending on the surrounding words.
Multiple pronunciations of Chinese words
The pronunciation of some Chinese words may vary depending on the context. The algorithm of this pinyin translator is not perfect - although it is designed to show the correct pronunciation immediately, sometimes only a native speaker can decide how to pronounce correctly a given word. In these cases, the translator will use a different color to highlight words that may have multiple pronunciations.
In the display mode "transcription above each word" (set by default) the transcription of these words will be marked in purple. For example:
You can click on the word itself (not on its transcription) to see all possible pronunciations and the meanings of the word (see the section about the built-in dictionary, below).
The translator also has several modes that are optimized for copy-pasting the results, such as "transcription under each line of text". You can see these modes when you click on the link Show advanced options under the submit button. In these modes, the transcription of the words with multiple pronunciations will be marked in green. For example:
You can click on this green link to choose the right transcription. Then you can select the text and copy it to another program.
Highlighting High-Frequency Chinese Words
Another option allows you to highlight high-frequency Chinese words. You can choose:
- Vocabulary lists for Chinese Proficiency Test HSK
- Subtlex – subtitle-based word frequency list
- Google Pinyin word frequency list
The words from different frequency intervals will be highlighted in the following colors:
The Chinese words required for the HSK exam will be highlighted as follows:
|HSK 1||HSK 2||HSK 3||HSK 4||HSK 5||HSK 6|
If you want to make a frequency analysis of your text and obtain detailed statistics, please use the Chinese word frequency counter.
Built-in Chinese-English dictionary
This pinyin translator has a built-in English dictionary with more than 113,000 Chinese words (based on Chinese-English dictionary CC-CEDICT). After you submit text, click on any word to see its English translation. This function only works if you choose to display the transcription above each word (default option).
You can also create your own vocabulary list. For that, click on the words you don't know. After selecting all of them, click on the orange button "Create Vocabulary List". You will be prompted to choose the translations. I suggest choosing one or two based on the context – you don't want to memorize 10 translations at the same time! After that you can export your vocabulary list into file (Word, Excel, PDF, HTML).
Chinese Characters Worksheet Generator
This tool also allows you to create your own worksheet to practice writing Chinese characters. In order to do that, you will need to submit some Chinese text. After that you may choose your worksheet settings:
- How many times you want each character to be displayed
- Regular (kaishu) or running (xingshu) script
- Font size
- Grid style: no grid, cross-line or star-line
Chinese Phonetics and Pinyin – Online Resources
- Phonetics and pronunciation glossary
- Chinese Pinyin Subtitle Converter
- Chinese dictionaries online – Project Modelino
- Free Chinese-English dictionary CC-CEDICT
- Standard Mandarin Chinese – Wikipedia
- Hanyu pinyin – Wikipedia
- Chinese phonology – Wikipedia
- Simplified Chinese characters – Wikipedia
- Traditional Chinese characters – Wikipedia
- Chinese Proficiency Test HSK – Wikipedia
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Alphabetical list of all words with audio or video recordings
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