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Loudness of Speech Transmitted via Handsfree Telephone Systems - Perceptual Measurements and Loudness Models in Free Field Listening

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The present study investigated the loudness of speech transmitted via a telephone system and the ability of existing loudness models to predict the perceived loudness. This study was focused on the case of handsfree telephony. To generate test signals for the experiment, twelve stimuli (mainly speech material) were selected and processed to simulate realistic telephone system paths. The processing included: filtering, coding/decoding and amplification/attenuation. A perceptual test was designed to measure the loudness level of the test signals. Results showed that loudness increases with bandwidth extension up to super wideband, including when codecs were applied. All tested models were variants of Zwicker's loudness model. Two models for stationary sounds and two models for non-stationary sounds were tested. In general, the models predicted the main trend observed in perceptual data and the increase in loudness with bandwidth extension. However, there was always a diff erence between prediction and measure, which depended on the sound pressure level (SPL). The models' behavior while varying the SPL was similar to what has been reported in many recent studies. Zwicker's loudness model yielded the best predictions, which did not support the hypothesis that using non-stationary loudness models improves the prediction of speech loudness.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: November 1, 2015

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  • 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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