octave illusion (Chris Chambers )

Subject: octave illusion
From:    Chris Chambers  <c.chambers(at)PSYCH.UNIMELB.EDU.AU>
Date:    Sat, 27 Apr 2002 11:55:46 +1000

Dear List members, I wish to announce an in-press article on the octave illusion, which will appear in JEP:HPP (see abstract below). In this paper, we suggest that it is time to rethink current thinking on the octave illusion, specifically the influential suppression model proposed by Diana Deutsch. Given the rather long publication lag associated with this journal, I would be happy to email e-prints upon request. best Chris ------------ Abstract: The octave illusion occurs when each ear receives a sequence of tones alternating by one octave, but with the high and low tones in different ears. Most listeners perceive these stimuli as a high pitch in one ear alternating with a low pitch in the other ear. Deutsch and Roll (1976) interpreted this phenomenon as evidence for a what/where division of auditory processing caused by sequential interactions between the tones. They argued that the pitch follows the frequency presented to the 'dominant' ear, and that the percept is lateralized toward the higher frequency component. We examined Deutsch's model in four experiments. Our results indicate that the perceived pitch approximates the fundamental frequency, and that the illusion does not depend on sequential interactions. The octave illusion may arise from an interaction between dichotic fusion and binaural diplacusis, rather than suppression as proposed by Deutsch. Christopher D. Chambers, PhD Cognitive Neuroscience Laboratory Department of Psychology School of Behavioural Science University of Melbourne Victoria 3010 AUSTRALIA Office Tel. +61 3 8344 3684 Lab Tel. +61 3 8344 5158 Fax. +61 3 9347 6618 email: c.chambers(at)psych.unimelb.edu.au

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