Masking functions and fixed-signal functions for low-level 1000-Hz tones

Daniel Shepherd, Michael J. Hautus, Walt Jesteadt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Masking functions and fixed-signal functions were constructed using a narrow range of pedestal intensities for 10-ms, 1000-Hz gated tones. Data from three experiments agreed with previously reported data, clearly demonstrating negative masking and the pedestal effect. The data extend earlier findings by showing (1) the resilience of the pedestal effect when a background noise masker is introduced; (2) a possible indifference of the fixed-signal function to stimulus duration; (3) the ability of a set of psychometric functions to produce both masking and fixed-signal functions; (4) depending on method, the impact of unit choice on the interpretation of both the pedestal effect and negative masking data. Results are discussed in relation to current psychophysical models, and suggest that accounting for the auditory system's sensitivity to differences in low-level sounds remains a challenge.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4168-4176
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of the Acoustical Society of America
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Acoustics and Ultrasonics


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