Published on: 14-Feb-2019
With the advent of virtual reality (VR) technology, spatial audio has been increasingly adopted to evaluate the acoustic environment in soundscape research. It is therefore imperative to assess the quality of commonly used spatial audio reproduction methods to determine their ecological validity. This study compares acoustic reproduction methods based on the first-order ambisonics (FOA) for evaluating outdoor soundscapes through VR. A total of three spatial audio reproduction methods (headphone-based FOA- static binaural, FOA-tracked binaural; and FOA 2-dimensional (2D) octagonal speaker array) were assessed in terms of the overall soundscape quality and perceived spatial qualities at each location. Regarding overall soundscape quality, there were no significant differences in evaluating the sound-source dominance and affective soundscape qualities between in situ and all VR methods. However, significant differences were found in the perceived spatial qualities between three reproduction methods and in situ. Overall, the FOA-tracked binaural appears to exhibit sufficient fidelity for cinematic VR evaluation of soundscapes.
Journal Article Title: Quality assessment of acoustic environment reproduction methods for cinematic virtual reality in soundscape applications
Published in: Building and Environment
This work has been done based on the research cooperation with HDB supported by the Singapore Ministry of National Development and National Research Foundation under L2 NIC Award No.: L2NICCFP2-2015-5. The first author is supported by the 2017 Lee Kuan Yew Postdoctoral Fellowship.
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