Binaural coherence edge pitch.

  • Hartmann W
  • McMillon C
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Abstract

The binaural coherence edge pitch (BICEP) is a dichotic broadband noise pitch effect similar to the binaural edge pitch (BEP). The BICEP stimulus is made by summing spectrally dense sine wave components with random phases. The interaural phase angle is a constant (0 or pi) for components with frequencies below (or above) a chosen edge frequency, and it is a random variable for the remaining components. The chosen edge frequency is a coherence edge because the noises to the two ears are mutually coherent within any band of frequencies on one side of the edge and they are mutually incoherent in any band on the other side. Pitch-matching experiments show that the BICEP exists for coherence edge frequencies between about 300 and 1000 Hz. It is matched by a pure-tone frequency that differs from the edge frequency by 5% to 10%. The matching frequency lies on the incoherent side of the edge, an important result that is consistent with the way that the equalization-cancellation model has been applied to binaural pitch effects, especially the BEP. The results of BICEP experiments depend upon whether the coherent components are presented in 0 or pi interaural phase for some listeners but not for all. The BICEP persists if the noise to one of the ears is delayed, but it becomes weaker and less well matched as the delay increases beyond 2 ms. The BICEP does not depend on whether the component amplitudes are all created equal or are given a Rayleigh distribution. Some reliable pitch sensation exists even when the component amplitudes are entirely independent in the two ears, so long as the phase coherence conditions of the BICEP stimulus are maintained. The existence of the BICEP is a challenge for current models of dichotic pitch because none of them predicts all its features.

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Authors

  • W M Hartmann

  • C D McMillon

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