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Re: effect of loudness on perceived duration

From:          Self <TODD>
Subject:       Re: effect of loudness on perceived duration
Date:          Thu, 8 Jul 1999 12:42:28

Date:    Wed, 7 Jul 1999 10:46:40 +0100
>From:    Richard Parncutt <richard.parncutt@KFUNIGRAZ.AC.AT>
>Subject: Re: effect of loudness on perceived duration
>In reply to Amandine Penel:
>>Does anyone know any research showing that (or/and explaining why)>an
>inter-onset interval between a soft event and a loud one (IOIa)
>>is perceived as being longer than:
>>1. an inter-onset interval of the same physical duration between
>>a loud event and a soft one (IOIb)
>I guess this is related to the observation that an isochronous sequence
>of identical events sounds asynchronous when every second event is
>louder. Specifically, the IOI following a louder event sounds shorter
>than the IOI preceding a louder event (or so I read in Handel's 1989
>book on p. 387). ((But is this really true/robust e.g. over a reasonable
>range of tempi?))
>According to Handel, Fraisse explained this in his 1956 book as an
>effect of grouping:
>1. the louder events group with following quieter events, and
>2. the time intervals between groups sound longer than within groups.
>Both parts of this explanation invite critical examination.
>1. Is there a general underlying principle operating here? Why would
>louder events group with following quieter events rather than preceding
>quieter events? Is it because the sound of a louder event continues
>longer after the event due to physical echoes, or due some kind of
>neural resonance? Or has it to do with the asymmetry between forward and
>backward masking? How could one distinguish systematically between such
>(alternative, intuitive) explanations?
>2. Is this simply because listeners are used to hearing longer events
>between groups than within groups? Or is that a circular argument?
>Richard Parncutt

To follow on from Richard.

In Todd, N.P McAngus (1994) The auditory primal sketch: A multi-scale model of
rhythmic grouping. Journal of new Music Research, 23(1), 25-70. (see also
Todd, N.P. McAngus (1995) The kinematics of musical expression. J. Acoust. Soc
Am. 97(3), 1940-1949.)

I showed that one could account for louder events  grouping with following quiter
events by means of a population of (presumed auditory cortical) neurones
which effectively act as a modulation filter-bank. Given the causality of the
filters they form a kind of sensory memory. Louder events last longer in the
memory (and partially mask the following events).

I also showed that equivalent grouping patterns could be obtained by equal
intensity events preceeding longer intervals (interval produced accents)
and events which are longer (i.e. more legato).

In sum, events which are Longer, Louder or more Legato tend to group with
following events. A sensory memory mechanism, such as proposed above, can account
for this (and incidently forward and backward masking).