Frequency modulation (FM) detection at low modulation frequencies is commonly used as an index of temporal fine-structure processing. The present study evaluated the rate of improvement in monaural and dichotic FM across a range of test parameters. In experiment I, dichotic and monaural FM detection was measured as a function of duration and modulator starting phase. Dichotic FM thresholds were lower than monaural FM thresholds and the modulator starting phase had no effect on detection. Experiment II measured monaural FM detection for signals that differed in modulation rate and duration such that the improvement with duration in seconds (carrier) or cycles (modulator) was compared. Monaural FM detection improved monotonically with the number of modulation cycles, suggesting that the modulator is extracted prior to detection. Experiment III measured dichotic FM detection for shorter signal durations to test the hypothesis that dichotic FM relies primarily on the signal onset. The rate of improvement decreased as duration increased, which is consistent with the use of primarily onset cues for the detection of dichotic FM. These results establish that improvement with duration occurs as a function of the modulation cycles at a rate consistent with the independent-samples model for monaural FM, but later cycles contribute less to detection in dichotic FM.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
- Acoustics and Ultrasonics