SYNCHRONIZATION WITH BEATS IN DIFFERENT MODALITIES AND TEMPI

  • Job J. Schepens
  • Gerardus C.S. du Pau
  • Makiko Sadakata

Abstract

The current study compares synchronization with beats presented in various sensorymodalities and tempi. Although beat perception and synchronization (BPS) has been studiedextensively in auditory and visual modalities, relatively few have looked into and comparedthat in the tactile modality. We conducted an experiment in which participants had to tap insynchrony with fast (inter onset interval of 400 ms), middle (800 ms) and slow (1200 ms)beats that were presented either in single or in combinations of auditory, visual and tactilemodalities. Preliminary results indicated that participants tended to fail in synchronizing withfast visual beats while they succeeded to synchronize with fast auditory and visual beats. Thiscorresponds to the rate limits of visual BPS reported in previous studies. Although there wasno significant difference between auditory and tactile BPS when beats were presented in asingle modality, the tactile BPS performance was more influenced by the presence of visualinputs than the auditory BPS performance when beats were jointly presented in multiplemodalities. Adding visual or tactile beats did not significantly influence the auditory BPSperformance. These findings support the ideas that audition has a higher affinity for temporalinformation processing and that multimodal BPS tends to depend on inputs from the modalitythat is more efficient in dealing with temporal information.
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