Communications in Mathematical Sciences

Volume 1 (2003)

Number 4

A PDE Based Two Level Model of the Masking Property of the Human Ear

Pages: 829 – 836

(Fast Communication)



Yingyong Qi

Jack Xin


Human ear has the masking property that certain audible sound becomes inaudible in the presence of another sound. Masking is quantified by the raised threshold from the absolute hearing threshold in quiet. It is of scientific and practical importance to compute masking thresholds. Empirical models on masking have applications in low bit rate digital music compression. A first principle based two level model is developed with partial differential equation (PDE) at the peripheral level and a similarity transform to represent all higher levels of auditory perception. Modeled masking thresholds of banded noise by tonal signals agree well with hearing data.

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