Auditory Virtual Evironment

The aim of an Auditory Virtual Environment (AVE) is to create situations in which humans have auditory perceptions that do not correspond to their real environment but to a virtual one (Blauert 1997). The main goal is a highly plausible or even natural reproduction. The listener should have a spatial impression of the virtual room and perceive his own movement inside the environment and also the movements of the sound sources. An AVE may be combined with other modalities, such as the visual and haptic modality.

Depending on the application, the system to generate an AVE is built differently: the user may be only a passive receiver or he may interact with the environment. The design of an AVE system has clearly to be listener-orientated. The perception of the listener defines the design goals. Out of these design goals it is necessary to find the best technical implementation.

An important approach to do this optimisation is to distinguish between the auditory event in the perceptual domain and the sound event in the physical domain and to describe the relation between them by psychophysical functions. Additionally the perception of a listener does not depend only on the external stimuli. It is as well influenced by, e.g., the auditory experience, the attention, and the expectations of the listener. Also cross-modal effects have to be taken into account. (Blauert 2005)

Real-time systems developed at our institute:


Blauert J (1997). Spatial Hearing, The Psychophysics of Human Sound Localisation (Second edition), MIT Press, (Original German version 1974)

Blauert J ed. (2005). Communication Acoustics, Springer