For perceptual evaluations of room acoustics, a spatial room impulse response is measured in a real space, encoded for a multichannel loudspeaker reproduction system, and then convolved with anechoic music. This paper describes the Spatial Decomposition Method (SDM). The encoding decomposes the spatial impulse response into a set of image-sources. In contrast to previous methods, SDM can be applied to an arbitrary compact microphone array having a small number of microphones without regard to the spatial sound reproduction technique. SDM relies upon the assumption that the sound propagation direction is the average of all the waves arriving at the microphone array, and that the sound pressure wave at the geometric center of the array represents its impulse response. Listening test with simulated impulse responses show that the proposed method produces an auralization indistinguishable from the reference in the best case.
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