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On the Influence of the Frequency Response Over Azimuth Localization with Consumer Headphones

High quality headphones can generate a realistic sound immersion reproducing binaural recordings. However, most people commonly use consumer headphones of inferior quality as the ones provided with smartphones or music players. Their frequency response shape and equalization can be a determinant factor in the reproduction of spatial sound. In this study, a perceptual test has been carried out to investigate the effects of the frequency response over the azimuth localization in the horizontal plane. A virtual simulation headphone technique was employed to test seven different high and low quality headphones. Results indicate that much front-back confusion is produced in all cases and that some specific frequency bands have an important role on it. Besides, a poor response in some high frequency bands can affect the lateral positions localization.

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AES - Audio Engineering Society