Questions tagged [hearing]

Hearing is the ability to perceive sound by detecting vibrations through an organ such as the ear.

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8
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1answer
9k views

Why is the human ear most sensitive to 4000 Hz tones?

Human hearing sensitivity is dependent on frequency, which can be visualized by equal-loudness (iso-loudness) contour plots. An example is given below (Taken from here). This plot shows that a tone ...
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0answers
86 views

Potentials between endolymph/cytoplasm and endolymph/perilymph

I am studying for an exam and there is something I can't seem to understand. My textbook says that the endolymph contains 150mM potassium, 2mM Na+ and 130mM Cl-. The perilymph contains 5mM potassium, ...
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1answer
144 views

Are our ears more sensitive to low or high pitched sounds?

I am a Physics student who also love music and learned a little bit about Medical Physics. I know that the basilar membrane in the cochlear duct enables us to distinguish different frequencies. The ...
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2answers
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What causes the tonotopic organization of the inner ear?

I'm trying to understand why tones are registered in the way that they are in the inner ear, i.e., why are high pitched sounds sensed at the base of the cochlea and low frequencies in the apex? I've ...
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0answers
23 views

What is the exact percentage of spectral changes that human pinnae introduces into the acoustic input signal?

I read somewhere that amount of spectral changes that human auricula introduces into the input signal is 6%. Now I cannot find that literature. Does anyone know a source that might confirm this, or ...
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1answer
407 views

Short dated spontaneous ringing in ear [closed]

What causes very high pitched sound in one's ear?
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2answers
352 views

How can binaural beats change mental state?

Can anyone tell me how binaural beats of 10 Hz can cause a person to calm down and one of 40 Hz to cause someone to heighten their attention. All I know is that they work on the principal of Brainwave ...
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2answers
413 views

Can somebody be deaf to voices of some people only?

The voice of females is generally of high frequency, while that of males is generally of low frequency. Also, as we age, we gradually keep losing the ability of hearing sounds of high frequencies. ...
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1answer
6k views

How does waking up from an alarm clock work?

During sleep, one's brain is shut down. All it can do is to see some dreams from the semi-conscious mind. Then how does it hear when the alarm clock rings?
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1answer
918 views

Why do we like music?

Music is, of course, just a sequence of sounds. Sounds are vibrations in the air, which our ears detect. So why do we find certain sequences of sounds to be appealing? What makes us want to hear these ...
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2answers
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Depolarization and hyperpolarization in stereocilia of the inner ear

It’s a well mentioned fact that when the stereocilia of the cochlear hair cells bend in one direction, the hair cell depolarizes, and when the stereocilia bend in the other direction, the cell ...
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1answer
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Does loud music affect hearing and balance?

From many sources I understand that strong disturbances can destroy hair cells in the cochlea. Does the sound damage always counts simply as the number of decibels recieved by the ear? E.g., if you ...
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1answer
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Is the ringing sound in the ears caused by dying ear cells?

I was recently watching the movie "Children of Men" (great movie) by Alfonso Cuarón. Now in a certain scene, the lead actor happens to be nearby a loud explosion. Later, when he complains about the '...
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0answers
3k views

Pitch shift in hearing after wisdom teeth removal

Yesterday I had my wisdom teeth removed. This morning, when I heard our phone ringing, it sounded a little lower-pitched than usual (I have perfect pitch). Sure enough, when I opened FL Studio (music-...
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1answer
256 views

What is the biological limit on hearing resolution?

I sometimes wonder how many different individual musical scales could be perceived by human ears. I define a musical scale as a collection of notes that relate to some fundamental frequency by ...
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2answers
2k views

How to make a fake auditory signal?

My question is about making fake auditory signals. The ear collects sounds from the environment, which are transformed into a neural signal by the hair cells in the inner ear. This signal is sent ...
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1answer
1k views

How can bats hear such high frequencies?

I attended a talk that glossed over some biology as it was talking about a certain protein. The speaker mentioned humans can hear up to, often less than 20kHz frequencies, whereas bats can hear up to ...
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2answers
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What's the frequency resolution of the human ear?

I was thinking about audio compression (namely mp3), that "filters" out sound that we would not likely hear. The MP3 lossy audio data compression algorithm takes advantage of a perceptual ...
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2answers
1k views

Are unilaterally deaf people able to determine where sound comes from?

My question is on people deafened in one ear, but normal hearing in the other. Time and level differences between the two ears are only part of how the human body can localize the source of the sound....
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1answer
2k views

What are the lower and upper hearing limits of the human ear?

I am looking for the loudness limits, expressed in decibels, for the human ear. Google and Wikipedia is only giving me the frequency limit that the human ear can receive, but I cannot find mention ...
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1answer
1k views

What is the mechanism behind tinnitus?

I seem to have come across two contrasting explanations for tinnitus induced by loud noises- i.e. damage to the hair cells in the cochlea. On the one hand, I have read that damage to the hair cells ...
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2answers
1k views

Do our ears or brains gradually adapt to noise pollution?

Having lived in various places all over the world for the past 9 years of my life, one thing stood out to me throughout this time, and now in particular. From a quiet place on the countryside in ...
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1answer
119 views

What is an auditory upward sweep?

I was reading an article in nature communications, when I came across this sentence: "The ‘match’ rule was indicated by either a blue circle or a auditory upward sweep".So I tried googling what was an ...
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2answers
271 views

Why can good music raise goosebumps?

Listening to really good music right now, I was wondering why it raises goosebumps. Is there any physiological reason for this reaction to specific wavelengths or something? EDIT: Due sometimes ...
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3answers
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Can humans perceive sounds above 20 kHz?

In the never-ending debate raging in the audiophile community about sound quality and what humans can or cannot hear, it is very very very very incredibly often cited that the upper-limit of the ...
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1answer
32k views

Why do adults lose hearing at high frequencies?

Children and teens can hear high pitched sounds that adults can't hear anymore. Why do adults lose high-frequency hearing?
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2answers
8k views

What is the human ear's temporal resolution?

What is the smallest sound duration that the human can hear? In other words, what is the lower duration limit for a sound to be translated into electrical signals by the ear? Suppose the human ear ...
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3answers
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Does prolonged exposure to low pitch but low volume noise affect hearing or stress?

This is similar to another post but not quite the same... At work, our ventilation system produces a constant low pitched sound - like a rumble - as well as the sound of air blowing through the vents. ...
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1answer
81 views

Do hairs in the ear respond to things like shampoo?

Shampoo and conditioning products make claims to be the end all be all in hair care. I doubt that they are so advanced "growth formula/anti-breakage/oily treatment". Have any of the claims been shown ...
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1answer
82 views

What factors affect the likelihood of auditory stimuli causing arousal during sleep?

I've noticed that the sound of water drops makes me wake up from sleep but other more strong sounds don't make me wake up. I can't find anything about this. The only reason I can think of is maybe ...
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0answers
100 views

TV's so loud when I turn over

Scenario: I'm about to fall asleep with the T.V. on. Having completely forgotten that it was, no longer even hearing it, just before falling asleep I turn over with a 'fresh' ear and it's blaring. If ...
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1answer
326 views

Why does chewing enrage me?

Whether it's snacking on chips, munching on salad, or simply chewing gum, when I hear someone do it within an earshot, it drives me completely bonkers! It doesn't matter if it's my girlfriend, my ...
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1answer
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Can foxes move their ears independently?

I've read that dogs can do move their ears independently, i.e., point one ear in the direction of a sound without having to point the other one at the same time. Is this a common trait with other ...
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1answer
576 views

How can antibiotics damage the ear?

What is the mechanism by which aminoglycoside antibiotics (such as streptomycin and gentamicin) damage the mechano-sensory hair cells of the auditory and vestibular system? (Could this be seen as ...
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3answers
942 views

What exactly is Tinnitus?

What exactly is tinnitus? What is it's cause, and why do some people hear it and others don't?
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4answers
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What is the evolutionary purpose of the topology of the human ear?

What is the evolutionary purpose of the topology of human ears? I understand why the ears may have a funnel-like shape but if the various "hills and valleys" do not amplify incoming sound, what ...
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1answer
160 views

How can one accurately diagnose the cause of human hearing loss without surgery?

In a human, if you were to avoid a tympanotomy (surgical examination of the middle ear), how could you distinguish between a blocked Eustachian tube, a ruptured eardrum, or a perilymph fistula? For ...
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2answers
270 views

Chills down the spine with certain music?

I am sure many of us know the feeling of that tingling chill down our spines when listening to certain music. I experienced this most when my younger brother played an emotional piano piece for a ...
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1answer
147 views

Difference in reptile inner ear and otosclerosis

In reptiles, the sound is conducted from the tympanic membrane to the inner ear by a single bone. In the disease otosclerosis the stapes of humans become fused to the other middle ear bones( or to ...
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1answer
1k views

While someone's ears pops with pressure, can he/she hear other sound at the same time?

I know that after or before someone's ears pops because of pressure changes, he/she can hear the sound such as laughter. But can these two things ("her ears popped with pressure" and "she can hear the ...
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2answers
2k views

How do small animals make loud sounds?

Walking past the park today, I heard a cicada so loud I thought at first it must be some sort of large power tool. How is it that that very small animals like cicadas (crickets, etc.) can make such ...
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1answer
896 views

How can we tell which direction sound is coming from?

Pretty self descriptive, without being able to view the source of the noise how can we tell the difference between a sound in front of us and a sound behind us if pitch, volume and distance are all ...
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1answer
694 views

Are these claims of “revolutionising” understanding of human vision and hearing valid?

I've started a hobby machine vision project (and posted some questions to this end on other SE sites) and on a side track, also been looking at relevant research in human vision (and partly, hearing). ...
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1answer
6k views

Does the human ear adapt to noise levels?

I have noticed lately that if I go to sleep, when I have my radio running, it is on lowest volume, I still consider it kind of loud. In the morning, when being on the edge of waking up, I hear the ...
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1answer
540 views

What determines the perceived pitch (frequency) of tinnitus?

I noticed that every time I suffer temporary tinnitus after going to a very loud concert, the frequency I perceive is identical. I'd put it somewhere around 17 kHz, but it's difficult to pin down with ...
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0answers
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Can a sound frequency 'not' within human hearing (20 Hz - 20 kHz) damage hearing when it is of high volume? [duplicate]

We can't hear sounds outside the range of 20 Hz - 20 kHz. However, if an inaudible sound is played at high volume, will one's hearing be affected?
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1answer
90 views

Hearing system as in visual system: exists well also - in protecting the inner mechanical parts of both sensing systems - a similarity? [closed]

I prefer answers, not just discussing. In the mechanical part of the human eye the control system to protect for overload of the diaphragm in the iris with a strong coupling to the light intensity ...
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1answer
13k views

How does prolonged exposure to high frequency noise affect hearing?

Is there any research showing how prolonged exposure to background noises, particularly high frequency noises, affect hearing abilities? Does constant high pitched noise cause damage even a low ...
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2answers
246 views

Why are melodies/harmonies perceived as pleasurable by humans?

Is there any evolutionary advantage to finding melodies or harmonies pleasurable? Does the ear pick up these particular oscillating waves differently from other sounds, and if so, how does that affect ...
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1answer
147 views

Latency to audition in human beings?

On average, in a human being with no neurological deficits, how long does it take for a sound which is sensed in the ear to reach the cortex? Which brainstem structures are most responsible for the ...

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