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An Investigation into Spatial Attributes of 360° Microphone Techniques for Virtual Reality

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Listening tests were conducted to evaluate perceived spatial attributes of two types of 360° microphone techniques for virtual reality (First Order Ambisonics (FOA) and the Equal Segment Microphone Array (ESMA)). Also a binaural dummy head was included as a baseline for VR audio. The four attributes tested were: source shift/ensemble spread, source/ensemble distance, environmental width, and environmental depth. The stimuli used in these tests included single and multi-source sounds consisting of both human voice and instruments. The results indicate that listeners can distinguish differences in three of the four spatial attributes. The binaural head was rated the highest for each attribute and FOA was rated the least except for in environmental depth.

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