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Nik Taylor wrote:
> I'd say it depends on the language.  For instance, in Japanese, [P]
> (bilabial fricative) is an allophone of /h/ before /m\/ (unrounded back
> high vowel).  Nevertheless, in the most common transliteration, one
> writes <fu>, and not <hu> (which is fortunate, since recent borrowing
> have begun to use [P] for [f] in other places), thus <fuji>, and not
> <huji>.  However, sometimes it's best to use a phonemic transcription.
> For instance, in my conlang,  /t/ is pronounced [tS] before /i/ and /j/,
> however, it is always written <t>, this is especially good with the
> gender-prefixes.  Gender 1 (female-rational) uses the prefix t(i)-.
> Before a non-glide consonant, it is ti- ([tSi]), before a glide or vowel
> it is t-, thus [ta], [tu], [tSi], [tl], [tSj], and [p] (slight
> complication: *tw, *dw, and *nw are impossible, they become p, b, and
> m).  To write it phonetically would require additional rules:
> 1. Chi- before non-glide consonants
> 2. T- before a, u, and l
> 3. P- replacing w.
> 4. Ch- before i and y
>
> Whereas now one only needs to write
> 1. T(i)-
> 2. P- replacing w.

This is the exact reason given in a book on Japanese I have. It's so
much easier to explain different endings in Japanese when the
consonant is always written the same, even if pronounced differently.
However, I very much dislike the look of this system. Who wants to see
'Fuji' written Huzi, and 'chotto' as tyotto? (Or is it -ou?) Although,
to be fair, I have heard Japanese speakers pronounce Fuji as Huji
anyway.