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The Magnitude of Tonal Content. A Review

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Many environmental sounds contain tonal components which are commonly embedded in a noise floor. These tonal components are often considered as annoying and play thus an important role in the assessment of environmental noise. They are also important in sound design since many technical sounds contain tonal components. For a single prominent tonal component the impact of this tonal content on the perception is standardized. However, data on the magnitude of tonal content indicate that for more complex stimuli the magnitude of tonal contents diff ers from the prediction of the standards. After a comparison of the magnitude of tonal content to the related sensation of pitch strength, the current review summarizes the influence of different stimulus parameters on the magnitude of tonal content. Gathering the scattered literature on this topic, the review argues that the signal-tonoise ratio (as used in e. g., the ANSI standard or the German standard for "Tonhaltigkeit") is an appropriate first approach to assess the magnitude of tonal content also for more complex tonal components than a single sinusoid. The recently reported high correlation of the magnitude of tonal content and partial loudness indicates that the magnitude of strong tonal components may be assessed by quantifying the partial loudness of the tonal components.
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Document Type: Review Article

Publication date: 01 May 2011

More about this publication?
  • Acta Acustica united with Acustica, published together with the European Acoustics Association (EAA), is an international, peer-reviewed journal on acoustics. It publishes original articles on all subjects in the field of acoustics, such as general linear acoustics, nonlinear acoustics, macrosonics, flow acoustics, atmospheric sound, underwater sound, ultrasonics, physical acoustics, structural acoustics, noise control, active control, environmental noise, building acoustics, room acoustics, acoustic materials, acoustic signal processing, computational and numerical acoustics, hearing, audiology and psychoacoustics, speech, musical acoustics, electroacoustics, auditory quality of systems. It reports on original scientific research in acoustics and on engineering applications. The journal considers scientific papers, technical and applied papers, book reviews, short communications, doctoral thesis abstracts, etc. In irregular intervals also special issues and review articles are published.
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