Sound is an important aspect of product design and development. It acts as a brand differentiator and can strongly affect the consumers' preference for the one or the other product. Take the example of a car: while it should be durable and efficient, the sounds it makes often influence the buying decision. The same is true for a wide range of products, mainly in the consumer goods industry.
The challenge with sound quality analysis is that perceived sound quality is strongly related to the human hearing mechanism. The mechanism of the human auditory system differs from the one of the most common acoustic test equipment, the microphone. A microphone can measure the sound pressure levels (SPL), but will not take into account the subjective preference of a human brain towards, for example, an SPL with less energy in the high-frequency ranges. Acoustic engineers need to apply a process that addresses these aspects to improve their product's sound design.
A typical sound quality process starts with binaural acoustic measurements. The collected data is analyzed by means of objective and subjective evaluations. In order to objectively rank and rate sounds, engineers use sound quality metrics. These metrics are often based on the psychoacoustic theory, which takes the mechanisms of the human auditory system into account. A parallel subjective evaluation, such as a jury testing procedure, helps to further link preferences for certain sounds with design variants or benchmarked solutions.
Webinar attendees will learn how understanding human hearing is the first step towards implementing a sound quality evaluation process into your product development cycle. It will help you design a strong, successful product with its own compelling acoustic signature.
- Learn why sound quality is important
- Discover how the human auditory system works
- Understand the differences between a "class-one" microphone and our human ears
- Learn how different sensory phenomena affect what we hear
Agnieszka Mroz has been working at Siemens PLM Software since 2015. She is a Product Manager for the Acoustic product line of the Simcenter Testing solutions portfolio, mainly responsible for sound quality and acoustic material testing solutions.