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The Use of Cephalometric Features for Headmodels in Spatial Audio Processing

In two-channel or stereo applications, such as for televisions, automotive infotainment, and hi-fi systems, the speakers are typically placed substantially close to each other. The sound field generated from such a setup creates an image that is perceived as monophonic while lacking sufficient spatial ``presence'. Due to this limitation, a stereo expansion technique may be utilized to widen the soundstage to give the perception to listener(s) that sound is origination from a wider angle (e.g., +/- 30 degrees relative to the median plane) using head-related-transfer functions (HRTF's). In this paper, we propose extensions to the headmodel (viz., the ipsilateral and contralateral headshadow functions) based on analysis of the diffraction of sound around head cephalometric features, such as the nose, whose dimensions are of the order to cause variations in the headshadow responses in the high-frequency region. Modeling these variations is important for accurate rendering of a spatialized sound-field for 3-D audio applications. Specifically, this paper presents refinements to the existing spherical head-models for spatial audio applications.

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