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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Room sound field prediction for auralization Ressl, Waqar-Un-Nissa (Vicky)


Sound fields in rooms, including the complex interactions between propagating sound waves and the room surfaces, are predicted using various approaches. These approaches are validated either physically - by comparing the measured and predicted sound fields - or subjectively. Subjective evaluation of the predictions can be performed using auralization, which consists of simulating an acoustical environment for binaural presentation to a listener. Inaccuracies that result from the different sound-field prediction methods result in imperfect auralization. It is of interest to understand the perceptual consequences of these inaccuracies and compensate for them with accurate sound-field prediction models. The aim of this research project was to develop accurate sound-field prediction models for use in auralization systems. To achieve this objective, two phases of work were undertaken: (1) acoustical signals were created, using simplified sound-field techniques, and presented to listeners using a commercial auralization system in order to test sound-localization ability; (2) a soundprediction algorithm was derived and used in the development of an improved roomprediction model. With respect to the work using the commercial auralization system, modifications were made to the system to mimic higher-order reflections in the room, as well as to account for varying surface absorption in each octave band. Subjects' localization abilities were evaluated using the sound-field simulations and in a real room to validate the sound-field simulations. Inconclusive results from the localization tests led to the development of an improved sound-field prediction model based on acoustical radiosity. The radiosity model was validated experimentally in full-scale and scale-model rooms with the help of other prediction models. A combined model - based on the method of images and radiosity - was developed and validated in several rooms. An inherent attribute of the radiosity approach which makes it unsuitable for auralization was identified.

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