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Vertical Localization of Sound from Multiway Loudspeakers

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Practical wide-range loudspeakers are usually implemented with multiple drivers, but the systematic effect of the signal frequency upon the vertical localization of sound is scarcely used for loudspeaker enclosure design. Tendencies in vertical localization for the frequency bands characteristic of woofers and tweeters in loudspeakers are shown. Using vertical arrays of individually controlled loudspeakers, synchronous and asynchronous bands of noise were presented to subjects. The frequency of the source affected the vertical position of the lowand high-frequency auditory image pairs significantly and systematically, in a manner broadly consistent with previous studies concerned with single auditory images. Lower frequency sources are localized below their physical positions whereas high-frequency sources are localized at their true positions. This effect is also shown to occur for musical signals. It is demonstrated that low-frequency sources are not localized well when presented in exact synchrony with high-frequency sources, or when they only include energy below 500 Hz.

JAES Volume 53 Issue 3 pp. 163-173; March 2005
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AES - Audio Engineering Society