Dummy Head Recording

In acoustics, dummy head recording (also known as artificial head or Kunstkopf) is a method used to make binaural recordings, that allow a listener wearing headphones to perceive the directionality and the room acoustics of single or multiple sources.

Human perception of the direction of a sound source is complex, and consists of:

  1. Simple "left-right" information can be gained from relative level differences and time of arrival differences of the sound in each ear.
  2. For percussive sounds, the impact of a shock wave can register perceptibly on the skin (typically the upper torso), with the earliest and strongest sensory stimulus coming from the regions of skin aligned perpendicular to the direction of the sound source.
  3. The human head imprints frequency-dependent distortions of phase and amplitude on sound reaching the eardrums, that are frequency-dependent level differences and these distortion effects vary with the direction of the sound source (being caused by the geometry and sound-transmitting characteristics of the sinus and throat cavities, eustachian tubes, inner ear, external ears, and other hard and soft tissues in the head and upper body (see: head-related transfer function, "HRTF").

Conventional stereo recording only makes use of left-right information. Dummy head recording uses both left-right information and frequency-dependent distortions.

Read more about Dummy Head RecordingMethods, Limitations, History

Other articles related to "dummy head recording, dummy head recordings, head, recording":

Dummy Head Recording - History
... Historically, dummy head recordings have been associated with the use of a physical synthetic head, the "Kunstkopf" ... The "head" could be placed in a concert hall to make a live orchestral recording, or actors could stand around the head when recording their dialogue ... The head could also be used to imprint positional information on prerecorded sound effects by playing sounds through a loudspeaker placed in a suitable position by the ...

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