Virtual audio system customization using visual matching of ear parameters

TitleVirtual audio system customization using visual matching of ear parameters
Publication TypeConference Papers
Year of Publication2002
AuthorsZotkin DN, Duraiswami R, Davis LS, Mohan A, Raykar V
Conference Name16th International Conference on Pattern Recognition, 2002. Proceedings
Date Published2002///
ISBN Number0-7695-1695-X
Keywordsacoustic signal processing, Audio systems, Auditory system, Computer vision, database, Ear, ear parameter matching, geometrical measurements, Head, head related transfer functions, HRTF customization, Image databases, IMAGE PROCESSING, medical image processing, performance improvement, Position measurement, sonification, Spatial databases, System testing, Transfer functions, virtual audio system customization, virtual auditory spaces, virtual auditory system, visual matching

Applications in the creation of virtual auditory spaces (VAS) and sonification require individualized head related transfer functions (HRTFs) for perceptual fidelity. HRTFs exhibit significant variation from person to person due to differences between their pinnae, and their body sizes. We propose and preliminarily implement a simple HRTF customization based on the use of a published database of HRTFs (Algazi et al., 2001) that also contains geometrical measurements of subject pinnae. We measure some of these features via simple image processing, and select the HRTF that has features most closely corresponding to the individual's features. This selection procedure is implemented along with the virtual auditory system described in (Zotkin et al., 2002), and listener tests conducted comparing the customized HRTF and a fixed HRTF. Despite the simplicity of the method, tests reveal average improvement in localization accuracy of about 25 percent, though performance improvement varies with source location and individuals.