Evaluation of an ILD-based hearing device algorithm using Virtual Sound Environments
* Presenting author
Hearing devices are mostly tested using controlled laboratory environments. These feature simplified auditory representations of the real conditions under which the hearing devices will perform once released, such as one speech signal played from one loudspeaker plus a noise signal playing from another loudspeaker. It can however be insufficiently realistic for some of the processing included in the devices. In order to circumvent this limitation, Virtual Sound Environments (VSE) can be used to simulate complex sound fields using headphones or arrays of loudspeakers, and thus to offer more realistic conditions than most common hearing device evaluation protocols. In this paper, a hearing device algorithm based on Interaural Level Differences (ILD) was evaluated using Binaural Room Impulse Responses (BRIR, used here as a reference), and artificial room effect reproduced via either Higher Order Ambisonics (HOA) or Vector-Based Amplitude Panning (VBAP). Results show that the algorithm does not work when using 5th order HOA, and that the performance of the algorithm is lower when using VBAP than when using BRIR.