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The Influence of Loudspeaker Type on Timbre Perception

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Perceived timbre depends strongly on spectral shape. The authors compared spectral shape discrimination for a distributed mode loudspeaker (DML) and a cone loudspeaker. Subjects were asked to distinguish between a tone complex with a flat spectral envelope and a tone complex with a ripple in its spectral envelope for each type of loudspeaker. The ripple depth was varied to determine threshold. Performance was significantly better for the DML than for the cone loudspeaker.:

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AES - Audio Engineering Society