Preference test system in Miyama Conceru

The virtual sound field reproduction for the audience and the musician, and the subjective preference test for seat selection are available in the sound simulation room of Miyama Conceru (Kirishima International Concert Hall)

This sound simulation system was developed to reproduce the sound field of concert hall in detail by simulating first to fifth reflective sound. Such a complicated simulation was possible only in the laboratory at that time, but we wanted to realize it for ordinary people. 

In the sound simulation room, the sound fields of world famous concert halls can be reproduced by simple operation. This system also supports the musicians for their practice by simulating the stage sound. 


Comments by Hiroshi Setoguchi, Sound coordinator of Miyama Conceru

In Miyama Conceru, it is a great feature that favorite seat can be reserved by sound preference test in a sound simulation room. Subjective sound preference of people is tested for several sound qualities in the sound simulation room. The best conditions for each person is compared with the sound qualities of each seat in the hall and the best matched seat is found. The seat can be reserved at the time. 

It was very grateful that the sound simulation system is designed not only for reproducing a sound but also for supporting musicians' skill. Musicians perform considering how audience hears their performance. For example, the musicians change their singing method and performing method by the hall, because sound qualities are different by the halls. It is also important for musicians to correct the defect of their performance in which the music is not audible well to the audience even when the musicians themselves hear it well. Thanks to a sound simulation, musicians now can practice the optimal performing method for every hall.

I asked some major audio equipment makers to construct a system. However, they were impossible. Only Yoshimasa gave me a concrete proposal. There was still newer proposals from Yoshimasa in the midst of the discussion with Professor Ando (the acoustical designer of Miyama Conceru). While realizing it as a system, reliability increased further.

Specialists of music use a system. They are not the specialist of computer. A simple mechanism is the best. I appreciate that I can treat this system without considering difficult things.

Subjective preference of the listener is tested by the "preference test" for the acoustic parameters (LL, Dt1, Tsub, IACC). Those parameters corresponds to loudness, reverberance, and spaciousness of sound field. The important point here is that listener's sensitivity is also calculated for each parameter from a preference function in addition to the preference score. The total preference score is found as a sum of each score. 

To calculate a listener's preference score at certain seat, the acoustic properties at that seat is measured before. Those acoustic parameters are calculated by the impulse response measurement.

By comparing the listener's preferred values and the seat's physical values, preference score for the listener is calculated for every seat. Results are displayed as a seating map with different colors depending on the score.