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Audio- and Visual Cues in Mixing and Mastering

Authors Knöbl, L.
Year 2016
Thesis Type Master's thesis
Topic Psychoacoustics
Abstract With the emergence of digital technology into the audio market, computer-based music systems have become an integral part for the creation of professional audio productions. Most software in that area is still operated with mouse and keyboard and often involves complex graphical user interfaces. The goal of this master thesis is to investigate, whether and to what extent the visualisation of audio-effect parameters can influence the mixing decisions of audio engineers. For this purpose, test subjects performed two common mixing and mastering tasks by using just the aural modality, just the visual modality or both modalities at the same time. The first experiment was designed to investigate whether visual cues affected test subjects when matching the loudness of various test signals. Similarly, test subjects were asked to match the spectral characteristics of two test signals by using an equalizer in a second experiment. Though software such as sequencers and audio effect plug-ins have become indispensable tools for most audio engineers, the influences of audio- and visual cues in mixing and mastering have hardly been researched scientifically. This thesis should give some first indications about the interaction and implications of aural and visual modalities in conjunction with common tasks in mixing and mastering.
Supervisors Marentakis, G., Höldrich, R.