Document Detail

Perception of concurrent vowels: effects of harmonic misalignment and pitch-period asynchrony.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  2030224     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
Three experiments examined the ability of listeners to identify steady-state synthetic vowel-like sounds presented concurrently in pairs to the same ear. Experiment 1 confirmed earlier reports that listeners identify the constituents of such pairs more accurately when they differ in fundamental frequency (f0) by about a half semitone or more, compared to the condition where they have the same f0. When the constituents have different f0's, corresponding harmonics of the two vowels are misaligned in frequency and corresponding pitch periods are asynchronous in time. These differences provide cues that might aid identification. Experiments 2 and 3 determined whether listeners can use these cues, divorced from a difference in f0, to improve their accuracy of identification. Harmonic misalignment was beneficial when the constituents had an f0 of 200 Hz so that the harmonics of each constituent were well separated in frequency. Pitch-period asynchrony was beneficial when the constituents had an f0 of 50 Hz so that the onsets of the pitch periods of each constituent were well separated in time. Neither cue was beneficial when both constituents had an f0 of 100 Hz. It is unlikely, therefore, that either cue contributed to the improvement in performance found in Experiment 1 where the constituents were given different f0's close to 100 Hz. Rather, it is argued that performance improved in Experiment 1 primarily because the two f0's specified two pitches that could be used to segregate the contributions of each vowel in the composite waveform.
Q Summerfield; P F Assmann
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article    
Journal Detail:
Title:  The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America     Volume:  89     ISSN:  0001-4966     ISO Abbreviation:  J. Acoust. Soc. Am.     Publication Date:  1991 Mar 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  1991-06-20     Completed Date:  1991-06-20     Revised Date:  2006-12-27    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  7503051     Medline TA:  J Acoust Soc Am     Country:  UNITED STATES    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  1364-77     Citation Subset:  IM    
MRC Institute of Hearing Research, University Park, Nottingham, United Kingdom.
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MeSH Terms
Hearing / physiology
Pitch Discrimination
Speech Perception*

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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