In a companion article [L. I. Hellstrom, J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 85, 230-242 (1989)], it was shown that psychophysical pulsation threshold masking patterns (PTPs) for high-pass noise maskers are not a simple transformation of the profile of activity evoked in the auditory nerve by the masker. In this article, PTPs are compared with neural representations in which interactions of masker and probe are considered. It is hypothesized that, at pulsation threshold, some criterion value of rate change occurs when the stimulus switches from masker to probe. The iso-rate probe level, defined for single auditory-nerve fibers, is the probe level at which this rate change is zero. Iso-rate probe levels are lowest when probe frequency equals best frequency (BF) of the fiber. Profiles of iso-rate probe level versus BF (equal to probe frequency) are qualitatively similar to PTPs but differ quantitatively, e.g., in the rate of growth of probe level with masker level (1.2 dB/dB for PTPs, 0.54 dB/dB for iso-rate profiles). Quantitative differences can be further reduced by requiring a positive rate criterion. These results suggest that PTPs are not solely a reflection of the internal representation of the masker, but reflect responses to the probe tone as well.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
- Acoustics and Ultrasonics