ASA 129th Meeting - Washington, DC - 1995 May 30 .. Jun 06

5aMU11. Discrimination of musical chord components.

Barbara E. Acker

Richard E. Pastore

Dept. of Psych., SUNY, Binghamton, NY 13902

The current study uses an accuracy version of the Garner paradigm to evaluate the nature of the roles played by the E and G frequencies in the perception of root position C major triads. Triads differed in the E and/or G frequencies, relative to an equal-tempered triad (prototype, or P set) or an out-of-tune triad (nonprototype, or NP set). Thus, the P stimuli were more representative of major chords than the NP stimuli. Significant redundancy gains and interference effects were found for both frequencies in both contexts, thus demonstrating the components to be integral, as might be expected for tuning based upon intervals. The amount of redundancy gain found was dependent on the type of correlation, with the negatively correlated stimuli experiencing a greater redundancy gain than the positively correlated stimuli. Finally, better overall discrimination was found in the P context, thus replicating previous work [Acker, Pastore, and Hall, Percept. & Psychophys. (in press)] showing that a prototype functions as a perceptual anchor. In addition, major chord prototypes appear to be located in the physiologically motivated area of just temperament, as opposed to the more experientially defined area of equal temperament. [Work supported by AFOSR.]