A Virtual Performance Studio (VPS) is a space that allows a musician to practice in a virtual version of a real performance space in order to acclimatise to the acoustic feedback received on stage before physically performing there. Traditional auralisation techniques allow this by convolving the direct sound from the instrument with the appropriate impulse response on stage. In order to capture only the direct sound from the instrument, a directional microphone is often used at small distances from the instrument. This can give rise to noticeable tonal distortion due to proximity effect and spatial sampling of the instrument’s directivity function. This work reports on the construction of a prototype VPS system and goes on to demonstrate how an auralisation can be significantly affected by the placement of the microphone around the instrument, contributing to a reported ‘PA effect’. Informal listening tests have suggested that there is a general preference for auralisations which process multiple microphones placed around the instrument.
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