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  Artificial Head system HMS II Overview     Why Artificial HEAD Measurement Technology?
HMS II - Why Artificial HEAD Measurement Technology?
Hardly anybody would evaluate a sound with closed ears.

However, this is still common practice for con- ventional acoustic and vibration measurements. Recordings with conventional measurement microphones are not suited for an aurally- accurate evaluation of an acoustic scenario, because substantial acoustic information such as the spatial array of sound sources and the selectivity of sound perception gets lost.

In particular, the three-dimensional locating of sound sources and the influence of the acoustic signal through the human auditory apparatus are substantial parts of the normal aural impression.
A human is able to locate a sound source in three dimensions, i.e. in the horizontal plane (1) and in the median plane (2).

The locating takes place automatically by means of delay and level differences of the acoustic signal at both ears because the outer ear causes a direction-dependent filtering of the sound signal. The filter impact results from a modification of the sound waves diffusion through attenuation, deflection, reflection and resonance of the sound waves. Geometry and anatomy of the head and shoulder unit as well as the influence of the pinna play a decisive role. Based on this locating capability of the human auditory apparatus it is possible for humans to select single sound sources from background noise.

Binaural hearing cannot be simulated by simply using two measurement microphones as "ear replacements". Only after having taken the acoustic filter characteristics of the head and ears into account, do aurally-accurate, unaltered recordings become possible. In many respects the human auditory system is different from the properties of conventional sound sensors. On the one hand, very complex signal processing takes place in the auditory apparatus, which captures the amplitude distribution and the spectral and temporal structure of the acoustic signal. The listener perceives a comprehensive, holistic impression of an acoustic event. On the other hand, man possesses only a very short acoustic memory. With the artificial head measurement technology from HEAD acoustics, it is possible to conduct aurally-accurate recordings of acoustic signals and to save them. The playback of an artificial head recording generates the same aural impression as if the listener had heard the sound event directly.

Thanks to the true-to-original recording and playback of arbitrary sound incidents and their digital archives, the system makes comparative and aurally-accurate evaluations of different sound situations possible. And because the artificial head technology is compatible with conventional measurement technology, subjective and objective sound field analyses can be combined in one investigation.
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