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Musician effect in cochlear implant simulated gender categorization
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Musicians have been shown to better perceive pitch and timbre cues in speech and music, compared to non-musicians. It is unclear whether this “musician advantage” persists under conditions of spectro-temporal degradation, as experienced by cochlear-implant (CI) users. In this study, gender categorization was measured in normal-hearing musicians and non-musicians listening to acoustic CI simulations. Recordings of Dutch words were synthesized to systematically vary fundamental frequency, vocal-tract length, or both to create voices from the female source talker to a synthesized male talker. Results showed an overall musician effect, mainly due to musicians weighting fundamental frequency more than non-musicians in CI simulations.
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