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Validation of the Auralization Technique: Comparative Speech-Intelligibility Tests in Real and Virtual Classrooms

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Speech-intelligibility tests with human subjects give more realistic results than do the measurement or the prediction of objective metrics. However, human testing in real environments has a number of limitations. Auralization offers a solution to the limitations, having unlimited capability to reproduce realistic listening environments. The work presented here aimed to validate the auralization technique for speech-intelligibility testing, in comparison with live listening tests in real classrooms. Results for two real and virtual classrooms were compared. Acoustical parameters were measured in the real classrooms and speech-intelligibility tests performed. The Modified Rhyme Test and speech-babble noise were generated by loudspeakers. Speech-intelligibility tests were performed at three positions with normal-hearing subjects. The classrooms and the speech-intelligibility test conditions were modeled using the CATT-Acoustics prediction and auralization system. Predicted and measured room-acoustical parameters were compared. Speech-intelligibility tests were performed in the virtual classrooms with the same subjects, and the results in the real and virtual classrooms were compared. Auralized speech-intelligibility tests were found to be reliable if the classroom was not very absorptive or noisy.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: November 1, 2007

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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