I came up against this phrase in a "type what you hear" exercise (so nothing on screen to refer to). I was conflicted between whether I was hearing "эта машина" (e.g.: "this car") or "Это машина." (e.g.: "It is a car.")
I happened to choose wrong, but whatever - my question is whether there's an audible difference between the two that I'm not picking up on? Or do I just have to guess?
to my kowledge there is no audible difference. I guess in context it would become clear/clearer.
I agree. I've become so frustrated with the terrible audio. Until they decide to do something about it (instead of deleting the posts to support complaining about it) they should STOP doing audio only exercises. There's no learning - just memorizing the "correct" answer so you can complete that particular run. And notice your post is a year old and still nothing has been done to improve the audio.
i came here for the same problem but still I'm pretty sure there is no difference in russian pronounciation between это and эта. it's not the audible, it's vowel reduction https://www.duolingo.com/skill/ru/Basics-1/tips-and-notes
There is no audible difference between эта and это. Therefore as a listening exercise, this is not fair or helpful.
Why is "This is a car" not accepted? Does the feminine conjugation assume we already know what it is?
эта is a different word from это.
это usually means "this is" or "it is" or "these are". It is not conjugated based on gender, it is always the same.
этот, эта, это, эти mean "this" or "these" and do have gender, but not many Russian nouns are neuter, requiring это. If the noun is neuter, you will have to rely on context to tell whether it means "this" or "it is".
i like your picture. it really symbolizes who you are as a person, much like mine.
I think Duolingo translates as literally as possible. Since автомобиль would be automobile.
Я начала, поскольку мои друзья рассказали, что русская секция здесь очень странная, и теперь я это точно знаю
Моя семья из Одессы, я единственная родилась в Америке. Надо мной все время смеялись потому что у меня неправильно грамматика. Так я хочу научиться!
It can be machine as well (for instance, стиральная машина would be a washing machine).
I recognized this one from my Romanian course. The Slavs certainly had a great deal to do with that beautiful language :)
Because it uses the demonstrative form of это which directly modifies the noun and can only be "this car". Note that since the syllable stress is still on the first syllable, это и эта sound the same.