musique contemporaine

Ircam - articles scientifiques notice originale

Perceptual attenuation of nonfocused auditory streams






document imprimé

Cette ressource est disponible chez l'organisme suivant : Ircam - Centre Pompidou



Perceptual attenuation of nonfocused auditory streams


Botte, Marie-Claire (auteur)
Drake, Carolyn (auteur)
Brochard, Renaud (auteur)
McAdams, Stephen (auteur)





auditory streaming   attention   loudness


The aim of this study was to measure the perceptual attenuation, measured in decibels, resulting from the focusing of attention on one stream within a multi-stream auditory sequence. The intensity of a non-focused stream was increased until the accuracy of detecting a temporal irregularity in this stream was the same as in a focused stream. Eight subjects were required to detect a temporal irregularity created by delaying or advancing one tone which could be situated in one of three temporally regular streams played simultaneously to create a multi-stream sequence. The three streams differed in tempo and frequency. Subjects' attention was focused on one of the streams by preceding the multi-stream sequence with one of the single streams (a cue). We first established the size of temporal irregularity detected at a 90% level in cued streams, confirming that subjects were able to focus on one particular stream. Second, an irregularity of this size was not detected above chance level in non-cued streams, demonstrating that listeners only focus on the cued stream. Third, for five subjects, a 15 dB increase in the level of one of the non-cued streams was necessary to bring detection up to that found in the cued streams. This gain provides an equivalent measure of the perceptual attenuation of non- focused streams. For three other subjects, detection in the non-cued stream remained at chance performance whatever the level. For all subjects, detection in the cued stream decreased slightly as the level of the non-cued stream increased. We conclude that the attenuation of non-focused auditory streams can attain as much as 15 dB, at least for some subjects.


Article paru dans : Perception and Psychophysics vol. 59


Envoyer la notice

Bookmark and Share 

Identifiant OAI


Date de la notice

2006-03-14 01:00:00

Identifiant portail