|This analogy crucially omits the shape of the ear itself. |
No it does not, the shape of the ear controls sound collection only. The ear drum and associated moving parts have no directional capabilities, therefore the shape of the ear can only provide a minor clue as to direction (based on amplitude).
Do the experiment - all you need is a friend, a blindfold and a sound source (I suggest a cup and teaspoon). I assume you have that covered.
Read the genuine science (Pink Floyd being unavailable).
"The directions that subjects thought the sounds came from were very close to the actual ones."
[edited by: lawman at 3:08 pm (utc) on Jan 31, 2011]
[edit reason] linked [/edit]
The problem with the scientific test you cited Samizdata is obvious - they didn't use a cup and a teaspoon.
Getting back on subject..... I vote for "One Night In Paris" from 10CC off of their "Original Soundtrack" album. The opening sequence with the glass bottle rolling downstairs has been an audiophile test for tweeters for years. Make sure to get the half-speed master of the CD/Album for the best quality.
For sheer overall tests, listen to the vocal layering on "I'm Not In Love" from the same album... really, really loud.
The brain uses experience to enhance the senses based on guesswork. Generally, it guesses right but we've all seen examples of optical illusions where it guesses wrong. It is mathematically impossible for a uni-directional sound sensor such as a microphone or ear-drum to detect direction without additional microphones (or movement of the microphone). Given that humans are limited to two unidirectional sound-sensors, perception of direction is severely limited.
Think of it this way, if you close one eye, mathematically you loose all depth perception, and yet, the brain is still able to make sense of the world based on a higher level of guesswork.
The last time I looked in the mirror, my ears were symmetrical. The fact that this bird requires such an adaptation rather proves my point!
|The barn owl is one of the most widely studied animals for sound localization. It has been shown that the barn owl has the best ability to accurately localize sounds out of all the species that have been studied. The barn owl’s left ear is higher than the eye level and points downward while its right ear is lower than the eye level but points upward. This unique anatomy gives barn owls exceptional ability to localize sounds in the vertical plane. |
Consider GPS, radar and radio telescopes. If funnelling could magically create information out of nowhere, don't you think scientists and engineers in these fields would use it?
For gamers, there may be a case for using four speakers, but when listening to music or watching movies at home, no such case exists except in the minds of people that want to sell you stuff and the minds of people looking for an excuse to buy that stuff.
My guess is that you either did not read or did not understand the science.
|There is no point arguing |
I am not arguing with Harvard University's scientific tests, Ray Dolby, Francis Ford Coppolla, Pink Floyd, the entire movie and gaming industry, barn owls or my own (and almost everyone else's) personal experience.
I'll see you on the Dark Side of the Moon.
OK guys, we're off topic. Not that the new topic is bad but it would be better to start a new thread.
I would use any Bach piece played by E. Power Biggs; nothing like a pipe organ for dynamic range.
My favorite being the Passacaglia and Fugue in C minor: [youtube.com ]
Guns N' Roses - Paradise City.
>>I would use any Bach piece played by E. Power Biggs; nothing like a pipe organ for dynamic range.
>>Guns N' Roses - Paradise City.
What an eclectic bunch we are...
Thanks for all these suggestions.
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