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Distance perception in real and virtual environments

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Spatial localisation of sounding objects is affected not only by auditory cues but also by other modalities such as vision. This is true particularly in the context of distance perception where the number of auditory cues is limited in comparison to e.g. localisation in horizontal and vertical planes. In this study we investigate the influence of vision on the perception of audio. In particular, the effect of incongruent audio-visual cues is explored in the context of the perception of auditory distance in photorealistic virtual reality environments. Preliminary results show that one can allow for a significant mismatch in rendered auditory and visual distance before an audio-visual scene ceases to be perceived as consistent by most of the participants.

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