Dialogue

Vocabulary

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Lesson Transcript

INTRODUCTION
David: Welcome to CantoneseClass101.com. I’m David.
Gimmy: 大家好, 我係 Gimmy。(daai6 gaa1 hou2, ngo5 hai6 Gimmy.)
David: And we’re here today with Beginner Season 1, Lesson 19.
Gimmy: Turn Down the Volume.
David: Right. Maybe your neighbors upstairs are too loud or maybe your living with a roommate who’s too loud.
Gimmy: Then you definitely want to learn these phrases.
David: Yes. We’ve got words and phrases about things being too loud or maybe even too soft.
Gimmy: Yes.
David: Our dialogue takes place at home between roommates. And this standard Cantonese as always.
Gimmy: Let’s listen to it.

Lesson conversation

細聲啲. (sai3 seng1 di1.)
咩話?(me1 waa2?)
我話... (ngo5 waa6...)
聽唔到呀. (teng1 m4 dou2 aa3.)
電視細聲啲! (din6 si6 sai3 seng1 di1!)
David: One more time, a bit slower.
細聲啲. (sai3 seng1 di1.)
咩話?(me1 waa2?)
我話... (ngo5 waa6...)
聽唔到呀. (teng1 m4 dou2 aa3.)
電視細聲啲! (din6 si6 sai3 seng1 di1!)
David: And now, with the English translation.
細聲啲. (sai3 seng1 di1.)
A: Turn down the volume.
咩話?(me1 waa2?)
B: What?
我話... (ngo5 waa6...)
A: I said....
聽唔到呀. (teng1 m4 dou2 aa3.)
B: I can't hear you.
電視細聲啲! (din6 si6 sai3 seng1 di1!)
A: Turn down the volume of the TV!
POST CONVERSATION BANTER
David: This is what earphones are for. It’s a Christmas gift for family. Get them a nice pair of earphones.
Gimmy: Yup.
David: Anyway, our vocab today is all about sound. So tons of words are going to be useful. Let’s get to it.
VOCAB LIST
Gimmy: 細聲 (sai3 seng1) [natural native speed]
David: Low volume.
Gimmy: 細聲 (sai3 seng1) [slowly - broken down by syllable]. 細聲 (sai3 seng1) [natural native speed].
Gimmy: 大聲 (daai6 seng1) [natural native speed].
David: High volume.
Gimmy: 大聲 (daai6 seng1) [slowly - broken down by syllable]. 大聲 (daai6 seng1) [natural native speed].
Gimmy: 聽 (teng1) [natural native speed].
David: To listen.
Gimmy: 聽 (teng1) [slowly - broken down by syllable]. 聽 (teng1) [natural native speed].
Gimmy: 話 (waa2) [natural native speed].
David: To say.
Gimmy: 話 (waa2) [slowly - broken down by syllable]. 話 (waa2) [natural native speed].
Gimmy: 電視 (din6 si6) [natural native speed].
David: Television.
Gimmy: 電視 (din6 si6) [slowly - broken down by syllable]. 電視 (din6 si6) [natural native speed].
Gimmy: 收音機 (sau1 jam1 gei1) [natural native speed]
David: Radio.
Gimmy: 收音機 (sau1 jam1 gei1) [slowly - broken down by syllable]. 收音機 (sau1 jam1 gei1) [natural native speed].
Gimmy: 音響 (jam1 hoeng2) [natural native speed].
David: Stereo.
Gimmy: 音響 (jam1 hoeng2) [slowly - broken down by syllable]. 音響 (jam1 hoeng2) [natural native speed].
Gimmy: 音樂 (jam1 ngok6) [natural native speed].
David: Music.
Gimmy: 音樂 (jam1 ngok6) [slowly - broken down by syllable]. 音樂 (jam1 ngok6) [natural native speed].
KEY VOCABULARY AND PHRASES
David: Let’s take a closer look at some of these words and phrases. In our dialogue, the first line was a request to turn down the volume.
Gimmy: 細聲啲. (sai3 seng1 di1.)
David: “Turn down the volume.”
Gimmy: 細聲啲. (sai3 seng1 di1.)
David: That’s not a verb, it’s an adjective. It’s the volume lower a bit.
Gimmy: Yes, especially with the 啲 in the back makes it the action.
David: It makes it more lower volume.
Gimmy: Yes. 細聲啲. (sai3 seng1 di1.)
David: Now, if the volume is too soft, you can also request that someone turn it up.
Gimmy: 大聲啲. (daai6 seng1 di1.)
David: “Turn it up.”
Gimmy: 大聲啲. (daai6 seng1 di1.)
David: “Please turn it down.”
Gimmy: 唔該細聲啲. (m4 goi1 sai3 seng1 di1.)
David: “Please turn it up.”
Gimmy: 唔該大聲啲. (m4 goi1 daai6 seng1 di1.)
David: The rest of our vocab list has a lot of electronics in it like “television”.
Gimmy: 電視. (din6 si6.)
David: We’ve run into this in previous lessons. Do you remember television news?
Gimmy: 電視新聞. (din6 si6 san1 man4.)
David: “Turn down the television.”
Gimmy: 電視細聲啲. (din6 si6 sai3 seng1 di1.)
David: “Turn down the television.”
Gimmy: 電視細聲啲. (din6 si6 sai3 seng1 di1.)
David: Which is a bit of an order if you don’t add “please” first.
Gimmy: 唔該電視細聲啲. (m4 goi1 din6 si6 sai3 seng1 di1.)
David: In addition to television, there’s also the radio.
Gimmy: 收音機. (sau1 jam1 gei1.)
David: “Radio.”
Gimmy: 收音機. (sau1 jam1 gei1.)
David: I don’t use the radio much these days, but I will use an mp3 player.
Gimmy: Same here.
David: Yeah. And in Hong Kong, this one’s easy. It’s a give-away.
Gimmy: Right, because they’re called MP三 (saam1).
David: Which is mp3.
Gimmy: Right, MP三 (saam1).
David: Right. So if you’re sharing an mp3 player with a friend, you can ask them, “Please turn up the volume on the mp3 player.”
Gimmy: 唔該MP三大聲啲. (m4 goi1 MP saam1 daai6 seng1 di1.)
David: What about tools like the iPod or the iPad?
Gimmy: In Hong Kong, we’ll just say iPad and iPod.
David: Okay. There is a Cantonese word for music, though.
Gimmy: 音樂. (jam1 ngok6.)
David: Music.
Gimmy: 音樂. (jam1 ngok6.)
David: “Please turn up the music.”
Gimmy: 唔該音樂大聲啲. (m4 goi1 jam1 ngok6 daai6 seng1 di1.)
David: Excuse me, turn down the music.
Gimmy: 唔該音樂細聲啲. (m4 goi1 jam1 ngok6 sai3 seng1 di1.)
David: So a lot of useful vocab for music lovers. With that though, we’re at the end of our vocab section. Let’s get to our grammar point.

Lesson focus

David: It’s grammar time! Okay, Gimmy, what’s our grammar focus today?
Gimmy: We’re learning a new verb complement today.
David: Right. We hear this in the following line…
Gimmy: 聽唔到呀. (teng1 m4 dou2 aa3.)
David: “I can’t hear you.”
Gimmy: 聽唔到呀. (teng1 m4 dou2 aa3.)
David: The verb complement is….
Gimmy: 唔到. (m4 dou2.)
David: And it means, “you can’t achieve something.”
Gimmy: Right.
David: So…
Gimmy: 聽唔到 (teng1 m4 dou2) means “can’t hear.”
David: Means you can’t hear. You’re listening but you can’t hear.
Gimmy: Right.
David: So, let’s have some more examples. How about “can’t see”?
Gimmy: 睇唔到. (tai2 m4 dou2.)
David: “I can’t see you.”
Gimmy: 我睇唔到你. (ngo5 tai2 m4 dou2 nei5.)
David: “Can’t touch.”
Gimmy: 摸唔到. (mo2 m4 dou2.)
David: “I can’t touch you.”
Gimmy: 我摸唔到你. (ngo5 mo2 m4 dou2 nei5.)
David: “Can’t eat.”
Gimmy: 食唔到. (sik6 m4 dou2.)
David: “I can’t eat it.”
Gimmy: 食唔到呢個. (sik6 m4 dou2 ni1 go3.)
David: “I can’t eat that.” And we might use that if we want to eat it, but we’re too full. “I’m too full, I can’t eat it.”
Gimmy: 我太飽, 食唔到. (ngo5 taai3 baau2, sik6 m4 dou2.)
David: Right. Another example would be if you can’t go somewhere but you want to go, you might say…
Gimmy: 去唔到. (heoi3 m4 dou2.)
David: “I can’t go.”
Gimmy: 去唔到. (heoi3 m4 dou2.)
David: So you want to go but maybe you don’t have a means of transportation. “My car is broken, I can’t go today.”
Gimmy: 我架車壞咗,我今日去唔到. (ngo5 gaa3 ce1 waai6 zo2, ngo5 gam1 jat6 heoi3 m4 dou2.)
David: Right. “I can’t go.”
Gimmy: 去唔到. (heoi3 m4 dou2.)
David: Most of the time though, you’re going to use this with listening and seeing.
Gimmy: 睇唔到. (tai2 m4 dou2.)
David: “I can’t see.”
Gimmy: 聽唔到. (teng1 m4 dou2.)
David: “I can’t hear.” And what it implies is you want to hear. You’re trying to hear.
Gimmy: You’re trying, yes.
David: But for some reason, it’s not getting to you.
Gimmy: Right.
David: Right? Maybe the volume is too low.
Gimmy: Exactly.
David: “Please turn up the volume, I can’t hear.”
Gimmy: 唔該大聲啲, 我聽唔到. (m4 goi1 daai6 seng1 di1, ngo5 teng1 m4 dou2.)
David: “Please turn up the volume, I can’t hear.”
Gimmy: 唔該大聲啲, 我聽唔到. (m4 goi1 daai6 seng1 di1, ngo5 teng1 m4 dou2.)
David: “Please give it to me, I can’t see it.”
Gimmy: 唔該俾我,我睇唔到. (m4 goi1 bei2 ngo5, ngo5 tai2 m4 dou2 .)
David: “Please give it to me, I can’t see.”
Gimmy: 唔該俾我,我睇唔到. (m4 goi1 bei2 ngo5, ngo5 tai2 m4 dou2 .)
David: So again, put this verb complement…
Gimmy: 唔到. (m4 dou2.)
David: …after single character verbs.

Outro

David: So that’s all the time we have today. I’m David.
Gimmy: I’m Gimmy.
David: Thanks a lot for listening and we’ll see you on the site.
Gimmy: 多謝收聽, 網上見. (do1 ze6 sau1 teng1, mong5 soeng6 gin3.)

17 Comments

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CantoneseClass101.com Verified
Monday at 06:30 PM
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Hi everyone! Do you have noisy neighboors or are you the noisy neighboor!?

CantoneseClass101.com Verified
Tuesday at 06:37 PM
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Hello Joshua,


Thanks for your questions.

1. No, this kind of pattern doesn't exist in Cantonese. It is always verb + 唔到 (m4 dou2). 😉

2. Yes, 得 (dak1) also describes the ability of an action, but the meaning is quite different. 👍

Taking the examples 唔食得 (m4 sik6 dak1) and 食唔到 (sik6 m4 dou2),

狗唔食得朱古力 (gau2 m4 sik6 dak1 zyu1 gu1 lik1)~ Dogs can't eat chocolate. => implies that dogs can never eat chocolate

我食唔到呢間舖頭嘅雞蛋仔 (ngo5 sik6 m4 dou2 ni1 gaan1 pou3 tau2 ge3 gai1 daan6 zai2) ~ I can't eat the egg waffle of this shop. => doesn't mean that I can never try egg waffle, but just can't eat egg waffle this time due to some reasons, such as sold-out.


Ada

Team CantoneseClass101.com

CantoneseClass101.com Verified
Sunday at 07:28 PM
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Hello robert groulx,


You are very welcome. 😇

Feel free to contact us if you have any questions.

Good luck with your language studies.


Kind regards,

利凡特

Team CantoneseClass101.com

robert groulx
Saturday at 11:24 PM
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thanks for the lesson


my favorite phrase is 唔該大聲啲, 我聽唔到


robert

Joshua
Friday at 12:42 AM
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Hello

would it be correct and have the same meaning if 唔 is moved to the front to form 唔聽到. (我唔聽到 vs 我聽唔到)

I also have heard about the verb particle 得 and I think both indicate the ability to do an action e.g. 唔食得 so what would be the difference between lets say 唔食得 and 食唔到? I'm quite confused about the two.

Thanks!

Cantoneseclass@101.com
Sunday at 04:39 AM
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Hello Angela,


Thank you so much! 😄



Siuling

Team CantoneseClass101.com

Angela
Friday at 12:31 PM
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👍

Cantoneseclass@101.com
Saturday at 07:54 AM
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Hello Grace,


Thank you for your question.


The first sentence tends to refer to your hearing ability and the second sentence is talking more about your right and permission to hear something.

我聽唔到。(ngo5 teng1 m4 dou2.)~ cannot hear....

聽(teng1)~ listen, hear

唔(m4)~ not

到(dou2)~ arrive, reaching


我唔可以聽 (ngo5 m4 ho2 ji5 teng1)~ I am not allowed to listen...

唔(m4)~ not

可以(ho2 ji5)~ can, allowed to, able


Siuling

Team CantoneseClass101.com

Grace
Thursday at 05:22 AM
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What's the difference with using 'm4 dou2' to mean to not be able to do something and 'm4 ho2 ji3'?


For example,

'Ngo5 teng1 m4 dou2'

'Ngo5 m4 ho2 ji3 teng1'


What's the difference? Which is more common?



Thanks

Cantoneseclass101.com Verified
Sunday at 01:03 PM
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Hello Alex,


我好細聲同我嘅鄰居都好細聲.

Ngo5 hou2 sai3 seng3 tung4 ngo5 ge3 leon4 geoi1 dou1 hou2 sai3 seng1

I am quiet and my neighbor is quiet!


Very good! :thumbsup: Or you can say......

我同我嘅鄰居都好安靜.(ngo5 tung4 ngo5 ge3 leon4 geoi1 dou1 hou2 on1 zing6) :sleeping:


Siuling

Team CantoneseClass101.com

Cantoneseclass101.com Verified
Sunday at 12:52 PM
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Hello JongwonLee,


我認識唔到 (ngo5 jing6 sik1 m4 dou2)is the correct way to say. You can always keep in mind to put the verb in front of the 唔到(m4 dou2). In your sentence {認識(jing6 sik1)~ know/recognize} is the verb.


Verb + 唔到(m4 dou2)

去 唔到(heoi3 m4 dou2)~ cannot go

睇 唔到(tai2 m4 dou2)~ cannot see

認識 唔到(jing6 sik1 m4 dou2)~ cannot recognize or cannot get to know OR simply say....

識 唔到( sik1 m4 dou2)~ cannot get to know


Siuling

Team CantoneseClass101.com