Discrimination of rising and falling simulated single-formant frequency transitions: Practice and transition duration effects

Lois L. Elliott, Michael A. Hammer, Margo E. Scholl, Thomas D. Carrell, Jan M. Wasowicz

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14 Scopus citations


Two experiments evaluated discrimination of simulated single-formant frequency transitions. In the first experiment, listeners received practice with trial-by-trial feedback in discriminating either rising or falling frequency transitions of three different durations (30, 60, and 120 ms). Transitions either occurred in isolation or were followed by a steady-state sound matched in frequency to the transition end point. Some improvement in discrimination over practice runs occurred for the shortest transitions. Whether performance was evaluated at the beginning or end of practice, there were no differences attributable to transition direction or to whether transitions were followed by steady-state sound. Discrimination, however, was significantly better for the longest transitions. Just noticeable differences (jnd's) for the longest transitions, measured in Hz at transition onsets, were of approximately the same magnitude as jnd's for steady-state sounds that were equal in frequency to the midpoints of the transitions. Subjects of the second experiment discriminated the longer rising and falling transitions, but did not receive extensive practice. Results of experiment 2 replicated results of experiment 1 in showing similar jnd's. Experiment 2 also showed no differences attributable to transition direction or to the presence of the steady-state sound following transitions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)945-953
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of the Acoustical Society of America
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 1989


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Acoustics and Ultrasonics

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