Speech Perception With Music Maskers by Cochlear Implant Users and Normal-Hearing Listeners PurposeThe goal of this study was to investigate how the spectral and temporal properties in background music may interfere with cochlear implant (CI) and normal-hearing listeners' (NH) speech understanding.MethodSpeech-recognition thresholds (SRTs) were adaptively measured in 11 CI and 9 NH subjects. CI subjects were tested while using their clinical processors; ... Article
Article  |   June 01, 2012
Speech Perception With Music Maskers by Cochlear Implant Users and Normal-Hearing Listeners
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Elizabeth N. Eskridge
    House Research Institute, Los Angeles, CA
  • John J. Galvin, III
    House Research Institute, Los Angeles, CA
  • Justin M. Aronoff
    House Research Institute, Los Angeles, CA
  • Tianhao Li
    House Research Institute, Los Angeles, CA
  • Qian-Jie Fu
    House Research Institute, Los Angeles, CA
  • Correspondence to Elizabeth N. Eskridge: elizabetheskridge84@gmail.com
  • Editor: Sid Bacon
    Editor: Sid Bacon×
  • Associate Editor: Eric Healy
    Associate Editor: Eric Healy×
Article Information
Hearing
Article   |   June 01, 2012
Speech Perception With Music Maskers by Cochlear Implant Users and Normal-Hearing Listeners
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, June 2012, Vol. 55, 800-810. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2011/11-0124)
History: Received May 20, 2011 , Revised September 11, 2011 , Accepted September 23, 2011
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, June 2012, Vol. 55, 800-810. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2011/11-0124)
History: Received May 20, 2011; Revised September 11, 2011; Accepted September 23, 2011
Web of Science® Times Cited: 3

PurposeThe goal of this study was to investigate how the spectral and temporal properties in background music may interfere with cochlear implant (CI) and normal-hearing listeners' (NH) speech understanding.

MethodSpeech-recognition thresholds (SRTs) were adaptively measured in 11 CI and 9 NH subjects. CI subjects were tested while using their clinical processors; NH subjects were tested while listening to unprocessed audio. Speech was presented with different music maskers (excerpts from musical pieces) and with steady, speech-shaped noise. To estimate the contributions of energetic and informational masking, SRTs were also measured in “music-shaped noise” and in music-shaped noise modulated by the music temporal envelopes.

ResultsNH performance was much better than CI performance. For both subject groups, SRTs were much lower with the music-related maskers than with speech-shaped noise. SRTs were strongly predicted by the amount of energetic masking in the music maskers. Unlike CI users, NH listeners obtained release from masking with envelope and fine structure cues in the modulated noise and music maskers.

ConclusionsAlthough speech understanding was greatly limited by energetic masking in both subject groups, CI performance worsened as more spectrotemporal complexity was added to the maskers, most likely due to poor spectral resolution.

Acknowledgments
This research was supported by National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders Grant R01-DC004993. We are grateful to all research subjects for their considerable time spent with this experiment. We also thank Barbara Shinn-Cunningham for helpful comments on this article.
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