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A Computer-Aided Audio Effect Setup Procedure for Untrained Users

The number of parameters of modern audio effects easily ranges in the dozens. Expert knowledge is required to understand which parameter change results in a desired effect. Yet, such sound processors are also making their way into consumer products, where they tend to overburden most users. Hence, we propose a procedure to achieve a desired effect without technical expertise based on a black-box genetic optimization strategy: Users are only con-fronted with a series of comparisons of two differently processed sound examples. Learning from the users’ choices, our software optimizes the parameter settings. We conducted a study on hearing-impaired persons without expert knowledge who used the system to adjust a third-octave equalizer and a multiband compressor to improve the intelligibility of a TV set.

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