Reviewing the definition of timbre as it pertains to the perception of speech and musical sounds

Roy D. Patterson, Thomas C. Walters, Jessica J. M. Monaghan, Etienne Gaudrain

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference proceeding contributionpeer-review

Abstract

The purpose of this paper is to draw attention to the definition of timbre as it pertains to the vowels of speech. There are two forms of size information in these “source-filter” sounds, information about the size of the excitation mechanism (the vocal folds), and information about the size of the resonators in the vocal tract that filter the excitation before it is projected into the air. The current definitions of pitch and timbre treat the two forms of size information differently. In this paper, we argue that the perception of speech sounds by humans suggests that the definition of timbre would be more useful if it grouped the size variables together and separated the pair of them from the remaining properties of these sounds.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Neurophysiological bases of auditory perception
EditorsEnrique A. Lopez-Poveda, Alan R. Palmer, Ray Meddis
Place of PublicationNew York
PublisherSpringer, Springer Nature
Pages223-233
Number of pages11
ISBN (Print)9781441956866
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2010
Externally publishedYes
EventInternational Symposium on Hearing (15th : 2009) - Salamanca, Spain
Duration: 1 Jun 20095 Jun 2009

Conference

ConferenceInternational Symposium on Hearing (15th : 2009)
CitySalamanca, Spain
Period1/06/095/06/09

Keywords

  • Musical pitch
  • Voice pitch
  • Vocal timbre

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