Show Reference: "Headphone simulation of free-field listening. {I}: {S}timulus synthesis"

Headphone simulation of free-field listening. I: Stimulus synthesis. The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, Vol. 85, No. 2. (February 1989), pp. 858-867 by Frederic L. Wightman, Doris J. Kistler
    abstract = {This article describes techniques used to synthesize headphone-presented stimuli that simulate the ear-canal waveforms produced by free-field sources. The stimulus synthesis techniques involve measurement of each subject's free-field-to-eardrum transfer functions for sources at a large number of locations in free field, and measurement of headphone-to-eardrum transfer functions with the subject wearing headphones. Digital filters are then constructed from the transfer function measurements, and stimuli are passed through these digital filters. Transfer function data from ten subjects and 144 source positions are described in this article, along with estimates of the various sources of error in the measurements. The free-field-to-eardrum transfer function data are consistent with comparable data reported elsewhere in the literature. A comparison of ear-canal waveforms produced by free-field sources with ear-canal waveforms produced by headphone-presented simulations shows that the simulations duplicate free-field waveforms within a few {dB} of magnitude and a few degrees of phase at frequencies up to 14 {kHz}.},
    author = {Wightman, Frederic L. and Kistler, Doris J.},
    citeulike-article-id = {13663638},
    citeulike-linkout-0 = {},
    citeulike-linkout-1 = {},
    issn = {0001-4966},
    journal = {The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America},
    keywords = {auditory, hrtf, ild, itd, ssl},
    month = feb,
    number = {2},
    pages = {858--867},
    pmid = {2926000},
    posted-at = {2015-07-03 07:58:18},
    priority = {2},
    publisher = {Acoustical Society of America},
    title = {Headphone simulation of free-field listening. I: Stimulus synthesis.},
    url = {},
    volume = {85},
    year = {1989}

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The difference phase between one ear and the other, the interaural time difference (ITD), is one cue used in biological sound-source localization.

In mammals, different neurons in the medial superior olive (MSO) are tuned to different ITDs.

The way sound is shaped by the head and body before reaching the ears of a listener is described by a head-related transfer function (HRTF). There is a different HRTF for every angle of incidence.