The just audible tonality of short exponential and Gaussian pure tone bursts
Journal article, 2011

This paper reports on listening tests performed to investigate the just audible tonality (JAT) of decaying pure tone bursts. Both exponential and Gaussian functions are used to shape the envelopes of the tone bursts and critical band center frequencies between 150 and 7000 Hz are studied. Loudness compensation is implemented to compensate for the reduced loudness of short tone bursts and attack functions are used for minimizing clicks. By using the method of limits, a sequence of tone bursts with increasing decay times and constant frequencies is presented to the listeners at 0.9 s intervals. The first burst in the sequence which is perceived as being tonal is indicated by the listeners. When that happens, the decay times of the tone bursts decrease and the listeners are asked to select the first tone burst with no audible tonality. The listeners are allowed to freely define tonality. No reference is given. For frequencies above 3.4 kHz, the results indicate that tonality is just audible for tone burst lengths of approximately 2.6–3.0 ms. For the lowest stimuli frequencies, the corresponding burst length is approximately 20–23 ms.


Peter Mohlin

Chalmers, Civil and Environmental Engineering, Applied Acoustics, Vibroacoustics

Journal of the Acoustical Society of America

0001-4966 (ISSN) 1520-8524 (eISSN)

Vol. 129 6 3827-3836

Subject Categories


Fluid Mechanics and Acoustics



More information

Latest update