Dynavox Series 5

The Dynavox Series 5 software is a communication package which supports multiple access methods and can be customised to meet individual needs. It has templates for creating and edit vocabulary vocabulary pages, and also includes the InterAACT vocabulary, which is suitable for a wide range of ages and language abilities.

The software is designed for Dynavox communication aids like the V and VMax, and can work with Microsoft Windows XP or Vista. It also features computer access and email (ability to sign up for a @mydvox.com email account). A range of artificial voice options are included including AT&T Natural Voices.


An extensive range of symbols and icons are available. They can be used to create communication grids and games and can also be supplemented with drawings, photos or new symbols. The symbols available include both the DynaSyms and the PCS symbol sets. Users can copy any of these symbols into a custom symbol set and modify them to suit their needs. They can also drag and drop a folder of pictures into the Symbol Editor and add all of the pictures to a custom symbol set.


The technique of “dragging and dropping” can be used to incorporate text files, sounds, pictures and videos into Series 5 pages. There is a feature which allows buttons to be hidden, so that communication partners can design pages that the user can progress onto, by hiding the more advanced buttons initially and exposing them later. Pages from the older DynaVox DV4/MT4 and DynaVox 3100 platforms can be imported into the Series 5 software, and content can also be incorporated from Boardmaker (including Speaking Dynamically Pro) and the IntelliTools Classroom Suite.

InterAACT visual scenes can be used, with hidden message buttons located under relevant areas of the picture (see examples below):

Kitchen and chair scenes with hidden messages

The software has onscreen keyboards to control mouse movements and other Windows applications, and updated onscreen keyboards for mouseless browsing via the Firefox web browser. You can personalise these or build your own customised keyboards. The Series 5 software also allows the user to save a message from the Message Window as a text file for later use.


AT&T Natural Voices (UK English Charles and Audrey plus US English Crystal and Mike) are provided, providing high-quality text-to-speech. DECtalk and Microsoft voices are also included. The software can be programmed to speak each word upon selection, or to wait until longer messages are created and then speak the entire message at once. You can also record your own speech for use in the communication grids.


Series 5 software can be accessed by:

  • Touchscreen
  • Mouse pause/headtrackers/headmouse (selection is made using by pausing or by using an external switch)
  • Morse code using either one or two switches, with visual and audio feedback (supports standard codes for letters and numbers, and tags every item on the display to increase speed)
  • Eyegaze selection by blinking, dwelling for specified amounts of time, or by using an external switch (requires EyeMax accessory)
  • Joystick and switch joystick
  • Switches
  • Mouse and keyboard (supports keyboard shortcuts)

For the majority of these access methods the following settings are provided:

  • Touch enter
  • Touch exit
  • Touch autozoom (enlarging the portion of the screen that was selected)
  • Zoom scanning (magnifiying scan items as they are encountered)
  • Auditory and visual feedback
  • Adjustable timing sliders for hold, release, pause and dwell support
  • Audio touch (combines auditory cues with touchscreen or mouse)

Also, unlike most communication systems, all of the system tools as well as ways to modify and create pages are available to users of any input method.

Switch scanning

There is a comprehensive choice of scanning patterns available:

  • 1 switch autoscan
  • 1 switch and 2 switch directed scan
  • 1 switch directed scan with dwell
  • Inverse scanning

Auditory scanning

Each of the scanning methods offers the option of giving audio feedback with either synthesised or digitised speech. You can set differing public and auditory scan voices, and adjust the volume and rate. The auditory scanning output can be provided through the headphone socket only. Short keywords can be assigned to messages or beep-only auditory feedback can be selected.

Other features

User Setup Wizard: When the software is first launched, the user profile will be created, and personal information can be integrated into pages. Multiple users environments are supported.

Word Morphology: The Series 5 software can automatically conjugate verbs into the proper form, change nouns from singular to plural, and so forth.

Word Prediction: There is word prediction, character prediction, and phrase prediction available. Predicted phrases come from the users “My Phrases” collection, which is a list of phrases for specific situations that can be accessed from the title bar, and may be restricted by concept. Slots can also be included in messages, where a word can be changed to any other word associated with a particular concept. There is abbreviation expansion available and the dictionary is editable.

Internet, Email and SMS: Any access method is supported to use, for example, Microsoft Outlook, Messenger and web browsing with the included Firefox web browser with its accessibility add-on. Note that You can compose, send and receive email - and send simple text files or more complex email messages with embedded picture symbols. Text messaging requires a Bluetooth-enabled mobile phone.

Additional Features: The Series 5 software includes a built-in spell checker, calculator, reminders, address book, and eBook Reader (to download and read eBooks). Webcams are also supported. Commands can be sent from within the Series 5 software to other Windows software, and information can be sent to a printer, and text documents generated. There is a unique song editor feature which enables the device user to compose and sing original songs using DECtalk.


Downloads are available from


An Implementation Toolkit is available from


which has a variety of activities, advice sheets, lesson plans, and training materials. There's also a large amount of information on communication partner techniques such as Partner Augmented Input (PAI), also known as Aided Language Stimulation (ALS Carol Goosens), full training provided via virtual classroom on device programming and implementation, and 24 hour support via the web.


Supplier(s): Dynavox Systems Ltd
Access method Morse code, Plug-in keyboard, By pressing keys on the device, Touchscreen, One external switch, Two external switches, More than two external switches, Joystick, trackerball, mouse etc., Headpointer, Eyegaze
Speech type Mainly Artificial
Multiple user facilities Yes
Second language support Yes
Message view Text and symbols
Options for speeding up message creation Whole message storage, Prediction (letter), Prediction (word), Prediction (grammatical), Abbreviation expansion
Editable dictionary Yes
Auditory scanning Prompts on scanning, Prompts on keypress, Beep
Cell magnification Yes
Environmental control Yes
Guide price n/a
Price notes:

Included in the purchase price of Dynavox V and Vmax communications aids.

Vocabularies included Choice of 1 of InterAACt
Other compatible vocabs Picture WordPower, CALLtalk, IDV2 (Ingfield Dynamic Vocabularies), Talk Together, AlphaCore, ScanSpeak

Note that the information above is correct to the best of the ACE Centre's knowledge, but check with the supplier(s) if in doubt. We would be grateful if you could let us know of any errors - email speechbubble@ace-centre.org.uk

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