Judging sound rotation when listeners and sounds rotate: Sound source localization is a multisystem process

William Yost, Xuan Zhong, Anbar Najam

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    32 Scopus citations


    In four experiments listeners were rotated or were stationary. Sounds came from a stationary loudspeaker or rotated from loudspeaker to loudspeaker around an azimuth array. When either sounds or listeners rotate the auditory cues used for sound source localization change, but in the everyday world listeners perceive sound rotation only when sounds rotate not when listeners rotate. In the everyday world sound source locations are referenced to positions in the environment (a world-centric reference system). The auditory cues for sound source location indicate locations relative to the head (a head-centric reference system), not locations relative to the world. This paper deals with a general hypothesis that the world-centric location of sound sources requires the auditory system to have information about auditory cues used for sound source location and cues about head position. The use of visual and vestibular information in determining rotating head position in sound rotation perception was investigated. The experiments show that sound rotation perception when sources and listeners rotate was based on acoustic, visual, and, perhaps, vestibular information. The findings are consistent with the general hypotheses and suggest that sound source localization is not based just on acoustics. It is a multisystem process.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)3293-3310
    Number of pages18
    JournalJournal of the Acoustical Society of America
    Issue number5
    StatePublished - Nov 1 2015

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
    • Acoustics and Ultrasonics


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