Effect of variability in level on forward masking and on increment detection

Walt Jesteadt, Kim S. Schairer, Donna L. Neff

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


In the first of four experiments, all with the same four subjects, varying the level of a forward masker from interval to interval in a two-interval forced-choice (2IFC) adaptive procedure had little effect on threshold. In the second experiment, the signal level was fixed and performance was measured in units of d′. Varying the level of the forward masker again had little effect. Analyses of trial-by-trial data indicated that subjects did not vote for the interval with the higher-level masker, as would an energy detector. Performance was better on trials where the masker level in the interval with the signal was lower and was relatively independent of masker level in the nonsignal interval. In the third experiment, these results were replicated for a wider range of masker variability and with maskers lower in frequency than the signal. In the fourth experiment, the same range of variability from interval to interval was imposed on the level of the pedestal in an increment-detection task. Results were similar to those observed in forward masking. The results suggest that decision processes involved in both forward masking and increment detection are similar and that neither is based on energy detection. Template matching remains a viable alternative.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)325-337
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of the Acoustical Society of America
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jul 2005

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Acoustics and Ultrasonics

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Effect of variability in level on forward masking and on increment detection'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this