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A binaural analog of gap detection

journal contribution
posted on 2023-06-07, 17:56 authored by Michael A Akeroyd, A Quentin Summerfield
The temporal resolution of the binaural auditory system was measured using a binaural analog of gap detection. A binaural “gap” was defined as a burst of interaurally uncorrelated noise (Nu) placed between two bursts of interaurally correlated noise (N0). The Nu burst creates a dip in the output of a binaural temporal window integrating interaural correlation, analogous to the dip created by a silent gap in the output of a monaural temporal window integrating intensity. The equivalent rectangular duration (ERD) of the binaural window was used as an index of binaural temporal resolution. In order to derive the ERD, both the shortest-detectable binaural gap and the jnd for a reduction in interaural correlation from unity were measured. In experiment 1, binaural-gap thresholds were measured using narrow-band noise carriers as a function of center frequency from 250 to 2000 Hz (fixed 100-Hz bandwidth) and as a function of lower-cutoff frequency from 100 to 400 Hz (fixed 500-Hz upper-cutoff frequency). Binaural-gap thresholds (1) increased significantly with increasing frequency in both tasks, and (2) at frequencies below 500 Hz, were shorter than corresponding silent-gap thresholds measured with the same N0 noises. In experiment 2, interaural-correlation jnd’s were measured for the same conditions. The jnd’s also increased significantly with increasing frequency. The results were analyzed using a temporal window integrating the output of a computational model of binaural processing. The ERD of the window varied widely across listeners, with a mean value of 140 ms, and did not significantly depend on frequency. This duration is about an order of magnitude longer than the ERD of the monaural temporal window and is, therefore, consistent with “binaural sluggishness.”


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  • Published


Journal of the Acoustical Society of America




Acoustical Society of America





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  • Psychology Publications

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