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Re: pitch and middle ear

There is evidence that dc changes in middle ear pressure are transferred
to the cochlea.  However, in studies manipulating ear canal pressure
this is not the case if subjects equalise their middle ear to
atmospheric pressure before testing in each ear canal pressure
condition.  Under these conditions, pitch shifts are also unlikely to be
related to Eustachian tube opening or the stapedial reflex.

The pitch intensity effect is also fairly small at mid frequencies;
that is, a large change in sensation level is required to produce a
detectable change in pitch.  Thus, if you notice a substantial change in
pitch at 1-2kHz with yawning or jaw clenching,  it is not likely to be
the pitch intensity effect.

Is there anyone with absolute pitch who has observed any of these
bizarre effects?  Anyone noticed anything during air flights?  What
about the jaw clenching phenomenon?

I can sense the strain of hundreds of jaws clenching right now!

Daniel Rowan
Institute of Sound & Vibration Research
University of Southampton
Southampton, UK
023 80599468