Volume 115, Issue 6, June 2004
Index of content:
- PHYSIOLOGICAL ACOUSTICS 
115(2004); http://dx.doi.org/10.1121/1.1736273View Description Hide Description
Measurements are reported of the intensity of the siamang gibbon loud call obtained from the vocal bouts of three family groups at Twycross Zoo, UK. Across 25 samples the maximum intensity ranged from 95 to 113 dB SPL (linear frequency-weighting and fast time-weighting) and exhibited three frequency modes of 250–315 Hz, 630–800 Hz and 1.2–1.6 kHz. The lowest frequency mode, which may correspond to the “boom” sound produced by resonance of the siamang inflated vocal sac, had a mean maximum intensity of 99 dB SPL. These values, which are in excess of the saccular acoustic threshold of about 90 dB at 300 Hz for air conducted sound, suggest that primate loud calls recruit a primitive mode of acoustic sensitivity furnished by the sacculus. Thus reproductive vocal behavior of primates may be influenced by a primitive acoustical reward pathway inherited from a common ancestor with anamniotes. In humans such a pathway could explain the compulsion for exposure to loud music.
Similarity in loudness and distortion product otoacoustic emission input/output functions: Implications for an objective hearing aid adjustment115(2004); http://dx.doi.org/10.1121/1.1736292View Description Hide Description
The aim of the present study was to compare distortion product otoacoustic emissions (DPOAEs) to loudness with regard to the potentiality of DPOAEs to determine characteristic quantities of the cochlear-impaired ear and to derive objective hearing aid parameters. Recently, Neely et al. [J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 114, 1499–1507 (2003)] compared DPOAE input/output functions to the Fletcher and Munson [J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 5, 82–108 (1933)] loudness function finding a close resemblance in the slope characteristics of both measures. The present study extended their work by performing both loudness and DPOAE measurements in the same subject sample, and by developing a method for the estimation of gain needed to compensate for loss of cochlear sensitivity and compression. DPOAEs and loudness exhibited similar behavior when plotted on a logarithmic scale and slope increased with increasing hearing loss, confirming the findings of Neely et al. To compensate for undesired nonpathological impacts on the magnitude of DPOAE level, normalization of DPOAE data was implemented. A close resemblance between gain functions based on loudness and normalized DPOAE data was achieved. These findings suggest that DPOAEs are able to quantify the loss of cochlear sensitivity and compression and thus might provide parameters for a noncooperative hearing aid adjustment.
115(2004); http://dx.doi.org/10.1121/1.1739479View Description Hide Description
Auditory feedback influences the development of vocalizations in songbirds and parrots; however, little is known about the development of hearing in these birds. The auditory brainstem response was used to track the development of auditory sensitivity in budgerigars from hatch to 6 weeks of age. Responses were first obtained from 1-week-old at high stimulation levels at frequencies at or below 2 kHz, showing that budgerigars do not hear well at hatch. Over the next week, thresholds improved markedly, and responses were obtained for almost all test frequencies throughout the range of hearing by 14 days. By 3 weeks posthatch, birds’ best sensitivity shifted from 2 to 2.86 kHz, and the shape of the auditory brainstem response (ABR) audiogram became similar to that of adult budgerigars. About a week before leaving the nest, ABR audiograms of young budgerigars are very similar to those of adult birds. These data complement what is known about vocal development in budgerigars and show that hearing is fully developed by the time that vocal learning begins.