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Author Topic: Does sound frequency correlate to sound direction?  (Read 2795 times)

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fuzion_mixer

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Does sound frequency correlate to sound direction?
« on: June 19, 2016, 00:13:50 »

I feel like basses are more audible to the left ear than to the right, whereas the higher-frequency sounds are more audible to the right rather than the left. I'm not sure if this is scientifically proven to be true or false, but it's what I've experienced so far.

I think it's safe to say that our hearing is visualised as left-to-right (such as the EM spectrum, or to be more exact, a piano). I have no clue as to whether our brain detects and analyses sound frequencies like this by default or it has to do with what we perceive pitch progression so far as to indoctrinate ourselves with it (for lack of a better word).

Although very minute, it is still noticeable (most effective: headphones, earphones, or any of the sort). Try listening to a song. You will (or won't) find that the bass is leaning more to the left just a tad bit. Good luck experimenting ya?  ;)
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zzo38

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Re: Does sound frequency correlate to sound direction?
« Reply #1 on: June 19, 2016, 05:23:27 »

Look at how the song is programmed too; some songs might be programmed to play the low notes on the left and high notes on the right. (This can be done by the "pitch/pan" control in OpenMPT, or by the $3xyy effect in AmigaMML; look at documentation for other programs to see its doing in other programs.)
« Last Edit: June 19, 2016, 05:26:39 by zzo38 »
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Saga Musix

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Re: Does sound frequency correlate to sound direction?
« Reply #2 on: June 19, 2016, 15:13:03 »

Quote
I feel like basses are more audible to the left ear than to the right, whereas the higher-frequency sounds are more audible to the right rather than the left. I'm not sure if this is scientifically proven to be true or false, but it's what I've experienced so far.
I don't think this is true; The human ear is just less sensible to directions in lower frequencies in general, and not biased towards left or right. This is one of the core concepts of subwoofer speakers: You place them in the center because your ears couldn't tell anyway if the bass is coming from the left or right.

But has zzo38 mentions, especially with oldskool modules where you have no panning commands available (e.g. 4-channel ProTracker MODs, which are hardwired to two left and two right channels), it might simply be that bass samples are more frequently put on the left channels rather than the right channels.
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Ceekayed

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Re: Does sound frequency correlate to sound direction?
« Reply #3 on: June 23, 2016, 12:19:37 »

If you really are hearing higher frequencies better with the other ear, you should get your ears checked. Earwax, ear(drum) or nerve damage can cause such effects.

I got assaulted some 10 years ago, guy hit me in the face and I passed out. The left side of my face hasn't felt exactly right since and I occasionally hear a pop in my left ear in very cold weather and everything gets muffled for a while after that (I lose high frequencies while low mids get heavily boosted and I also start hearing my own breath very loudly). Mighty annoying, but I'm lucky it happens very rarely.
« Last Edit: June 23, 2016, 12:28:21 by Ceekayed »
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pulsewave

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Re: Does sound frequency correlate to sound direction?
« Reply #4 on: June 26, 2016, 04:36:28 »

I had an ear ache, when I was little and now I also get pops in cold weather... Sometimes splitting of the frequencies helps notice sounds, like how having one bad nostril helps you tell where a smell is from...

ON ANOTHER NOTE: look into psycho-acoustics! Bass frequencies are used to make listeners want to move, or to create tension. The mids are where the most melodic parts should go, since they grab the attention the most listeners, and the high-end frequencies give the song it's texture.
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pulsewave

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Re: Does sound frequency correlate to sound direction?
« Reply #5 on: June 26, 2016, 04:39:34 »

So, hold back a little bit on the bass, and maybe make it less rythmic, UNTIL buildup is over!
This is what a "bass-drop" really is.
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