The influence of meaning on noise annoyance from varied spectral
Paper in proceeding, 2006

Spectral balance (the relation between high and low frequencies) is an auditory metric that correlates with annoyance. However, previous research has shown conflicting results where increased annoyance has been linked to both increased high frequency content [1] and low frequency content [2]. The aim of this research is to test the hypothesis that the information content of the signal could be a contributing factor to this discrepancy. An experiment was performed where participants rated sounds with different spectral slopes (flat, 3.5 dB/oct, 5.5 dB/oct and 7.5 dB/oct) and different information content (varying from original recording of a truck sound to a noise spectrum). The results showed that different spectral slopes were preferred for different levels of information content.

sound quality

Low frequency noise

information content

spectral balance


Anders Genell

Chalmers, Civil and Environmental Engineering, Applied Acoustics

Daniel Västfjäll

Chalmers, Civil and Environmental Engineering, Applied Acoustics


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