Re: effect of loudness on perceived duration (Richard Parncutt )

Subject: Re: effect of loudness on perceived duration
From:    Richard Parncutt  <richard.parncutt(at)KFUNIGRAZ.AC.AT>
Date:    Wed, 7 Jul 1999 10:46:40 +0100

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 Dept. of Musicology, Univ. of Graz, Mozartgasse 3, 8010 Graz, Austria Tel+43-316 380-2409 or-2405; Fax-9755; Email parncutt(at)

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