Re: Fw: sursound: The pinna and Ambisonics/cross post (John Culling )

Subject: Re: Fw: sursound: The pinna and Ambisonics/cross post
From:    John Culling  <jfc(at)BRENTWOOD.PSYC.CF.AC.UK>
Date:    Mon, 23 Oct 2000 15:42:44 +0100

1) It is not true that humans have particular difficulty with high frequency sounds. Humans have particular difficulty with pure tones in the 1.5-2.5 kHz region. Everything else can be localised quite well - at least on a left/right basis. 2) It is true that left/right discrimination is dominated by low frequencies. 3) All other discriminations (up/down, front/back) *require* high frequencies, because they are mediated by pinna cues, and the pinna has no influence over low frequencies. They also demand a complex sound, as it is the relative level of different frequencies that codes the direction. Regarding point 2, I wonder why audio engineers think that a single sub-woofer is a good idea these days. I find that they confuse the image compared to a conventional pair of stereo speakers. Multiple tweeters around the room seem like a good idea in view of 3) though. For literature see recent publications by Wightman and Kistler, Noble and colleagues, Carlile etc. John. Dr. John Culling, Sch. of Psychology, Cardiff University, P.O. Box 901 Cardiff CF10 3YG Tel. +44 029 20874523 FAX +44 029 20874858

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