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Friday, January 29, 2010

Ears and hearing: Milind Kunchur and his research

Psychophysics, auditory neurophysiology, and high-fidelity audio
Many misconceptions and mysteries surround the perception and reproduction of musical sounds. Specifications such as frequency response and certain common distortions provide an inadequate indication of the sound quality, whereas accuracy in the time domain is known to significantly influence audio transparency. While the -->upper frequency cutoff of human hearing is around 18 kHz (or even lower in older individuals) a much higher bandwidth and temporal resolution can influence the perception of sound. Non-linearities and temporal complexities in the auditory system negate the simple f ~ 1/t reciprocal relationship between frequency and time. In our group's research -- which lies at the intersection of psychophysics, human hearing, and high-end audio -- we measure the limits of human hearing and relate them to the neurophysiology of the auditory system. These experiments also help to define the criteria for perfect fidelity in a sound-reproduction system. Our recent behavioral studies on human subjects proved that humans can discern timing alterations on a 5 microsecond time scale, indicating that that digital sampling rates used in common consumer audio (such as CD) are insufficient for fully preserving transparency.


Thanking my friend Manolis and my brother Georges... mmmmhh, interesting stuff!

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