Stimulus factors influencing spatial release from speech-on-speech masking.

Gerald Kidd, Christine R. Mason, Virginia Best, Nicole Marrone

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

78 Scopus citations


This study examined spatial release from masking (SRM) when a target talker was masked by competing talkers or by other types of sounds. The focus was on the role of interaural time differences (ITDs) and time-varying interaural level differences (ILDs) under conditions varying in the strength of informational masking (IM). In the first experiment, a target talker was masked by two other talkers that were either colocated with the target or were symmetrically spatially separated from the target with the stimuli presented through loudspeakers. The sounds were filtered into different frequency regions to restrict the available interaural cues. The largest SRM occurred for the broadband condition followed by a low-pass condition. However, even the highest frequency bandpass-filtered condition (3-6 kHz) yielded a significant SRM. In the second experiment the stimuli were presented via earphones. The listeners identified the speech of a target talker masked by one or two other talkers or noises when the maskers were colocated with the target or were perceptually separated by ITDs. The results revealed a complex pattern of masking in which the factors affecting performance in colocated and spatially separated conditions are to a large degree independent.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1965-1978
Number of pages14
JournalThe Journal of the Acoustical Society of America
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 2010

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Acoustics and Ultrasonics


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