Look at 1:54 and 5:22 of this video: Chinese Pinyin in 6 Mins

Is ying really pronounced with an "o" sound? This seems counterintuitive, especially when yin (at 1:49 in the video) sounds as a native English speaker would expect.

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    I think the pronunciation largely depends on which part of China the speaker comes from. In that video, I sense a distinctive northern China accent. – nfang Sep 4 '12 at 1:18
  • This pronunciation can be found in very standardised Taiwanese Mandarin as well, such as heard on language proficiency exams and similar. – Olle Linge Sep 5 '12 at 3:10

In IPA transcriptions of Chinese, ying is usually written as: [iŋ]. This is exactly like yin, except with an "ng" sound. However, as you noticed, some people pronounce it a little differently. This paper (page 9) transcribes the alternate pronunciation as [iɘŋ]. Wouldn't really call it an "o" sound, but the vowel is different than that of the yin.

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