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Classic demonstrations of the phonemic restoration effect show increased intelligibility of interrupted speech when the interruptions are caused by a plausible masking sound rather than by silent periods. Previous studies of this effect have been conducted exclusively under anechoic or nearly anechoic listening conditions. This study demonstrates that the effect is reversed when sounds are presented in a realistically simulated reverberant room (broadband T 60 = 1.1 s): intelligibility is greater for silent interruptions than for interruptions by unmodulated noise. Additional results suggest that the reversal is primarily due to filling silent intervals with reverberant energy from the speech signal.


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