[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

Re: Height and pitch


A pitch scale, however, is not bound to a vertical dimension. In Java a tone
is not something between low and high. It is something between big and
I don't mean to bang the same drum here, but there is also a sound
localization basis for 'big' and 'small' as spatial attributes of
tones.  In fact, in the early days of experimental psychology, it was
seriously doubted by many that the auditory system itself could localize
sounds because sound didn't contain the characteristic of 'size' or
extensivity (often called 'volume') like visual or tactile objects.  These
guys sought visual or tactile explanations for sound localization.  Others
argued that the sounds could indeed be localized by the auditory system and
used as evidence the notion that lower frequency sounds appear larger and
more extensive than higher frequency sounds which often appear smaller and
more compact.  That is, sounds did have 'volume.'  Turns out that the
spatial character of 'biggness' and 'smallness' of low and high frequency
sounds is due to the presence of reflections and reverberation caused by
the environments in which these sounds are produced.  For example,
low-frequency (particularly lateral) reflections cause a broadening of the
image leading to a 'bigger' sound in terms of its 'volume', and this effect
diminishes as frequency is increased.