The processing of low-frequency interaural time differences is found to be problematic among hearing-impaired people. The current generation of beamformers does not consider this deficiency. In an attempt to tackle this issue, we propose to replace the inaudible interaural time differences in the low-frequency region with the interaural level differences. In addition, a beamformer is introduced and analyzed, which enhances the low-frequency interaural level differences of the sound sources using a near-field transformation. The proposed beamforming problem is relaxed to a convex problem using semi-definite relaxation. The instrumental analysis suggests that the low-frequency interaural level differences are enhanced without hindering the provided intelligibility. A psychoacoustic localization test is done using a listening experiment, which suggests that the replacement of time differences into level differences improves the localization performance of normal-hearing listeners for an anechoic scene but not for a reverberant scene.
- Pub Date:
- June 2021
- Electrical Engineering and Systems Science - Audio and Speech Processing;
- Computer Science - Sound
- 15 pages, 8 figures, preprint for a journal submission, paper in review, not yet accepted