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Re: 'Persistance of hearing'


Agreed. There is a tendency for listeners to maintain a selective
attention to fixed frequency regions. We discovered a similar kind of
hysteresis in experiments varying the phase of a sine tone at onset. As
the onset noise moved from low to high frequencies listeners seemed to
maintain a focus on the thump until the click became too loud to ignore,
and vice versa. The work is reviewed starting on page 305 of Signals,
Sound, and Sensation.


Craig Nicol wrote:

I've been looking at Timbre Spaces for a while, in particular the
spaces by Grey in the 1970s. In one of his papers he mentions an
experiment where two sounds are chosen (let's call them A and B), and
a set of sounds is generated morphing from A to B. What he discovered
is that there is a hysteresis effect when listening to the morphing,
i.e. If the sounds are played from A to B, the listener will report
hearing A for over half the samples whereas if the sounds are played
from B to A, the listener will report hearing B for more samples.

I am vaguely aware of similar optical illusions such as persistence of
vision and I was wondering if anyone could direct me to more
information on this effect in hearing as I want to know if this effect
is particular to the timbre space or is a product of human perception.

Craig Nicol.