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Some New Audio Measurements

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When we test an audio system or device we tend to ask the listener, "Do you hear the distortion we are testing for?," rather than "Are we testing for the distortion you hear?" In some cases the distinction between these points of view can be tremendous. Several tests will be described which were derived from the consideration of a geometry of perception and some of the preliminary results will be discussed.

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Scott Dorsey
Scott Dorsey

Comment posted May 16, 2021 @ 15:36:13 UTC (Comment permalink)

This paper discusses how, by 1975, many of the standard measurements used for audio equipment had ceased to be useful to distinguish between good and bad equipment.  Measurements that were effective to identify differences between simple systems of similar topology had become insufficient in a world of more complex systems of more radically varying types.  Dr. Heyser describes some measurements that were no longer useful and proposed some tests that seemed useful as attempts to specifically measure some of the effects that people were starting to hear in modern systems.

A couple of years after this paper, accurate FFT systems will become available and Dr. Heyser will pioneer the use of the FFT in audio systems.  This will be a complete and total revolution in the way people look at audio signals and at audio distortion effects.

What is interesting about this paper is that it comes right on the cusp of a revolution.  It's clear that something is wrong but nobody is really quite sure what the fix is.  It's right around the corner, but nobody knows it yet.

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AES - Audio Engineering Society