Evaluation of Binaural Renderers: Externalization

Gregory Reardon, Gabriel Zalles, Andrea Genovese, Patrick Flanagan, Agnieszka Roginska (2018)
AES Convention 144

Binaural renderers can be used to reproduce dynamic spatial audio over headphones and deliver immersive audio content. Six commercially available binaural renderers with different rendering methodologies were evaluated in a multi-phase subjective study. This paper presents and discusses the testing methodology, evaluation criteria, and main findings of the externalization, front/back discrimination and up/down discrimination tasks that are part of the first phase. Statistical analysis over a large number of subjects revealed that the choice of renderer has a significant effect on all three dependent measures. Further, ratings of perceived externalization for the renderers were found to be content-specific, while renderer reversal rates were much more robust to different stimuli.

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