1993-05-01

Investigating Impulsive Sounds - Beyond “Zwicker-Loudness” 931329

The common occurrence of impulsive sounds in automobiles and the recent emphasis on producing vehicles with a “quality sound” has increased the need for a method for measuring the pitch of impulsive sounds. Using Zwicker’s Loudness Patterns as a basis, a data reduction method was developed which summarizes the frequency content of each pattern. The method yields time varying quantities called Percentile Partial Loudness Frequencies from a time series of Loudness Patterns. Several “simple” impulsive sounds, representing a range of pitches, were investigated using this method. Visual inspection of the results has identified trends which seem to rank the impulsive sounds in agreement with subjective pitch rankings of a listening jury. In addition, the method appears to be capable of ranking the early portion of the impulse as a sharp or dull attack. Further investigations are needed to confirm these observations and refine the technique.

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