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Critical Listening Skills for Audio Professionals by F. Alton Everest

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A study of critical bands

Talk Tech
In this section, we recommend that you listen with headphones rather than loudspeakers.

(Distant male voice) “Ah…Dixie, what time is Andre getting home tonight?”

(Close female voice) “What? You know I can’t hear you when the water’s running!”

Now that was a perfect example of the masking of one sound by another. The sound of running water masks, or obscures, the voice. Other examples of masking are constantly around us:
 
In an automobile, the noise of the engine, tires, and whistling wind tends to mask the sound of the radio, and we have to turn up the volume. In open-area offices, privacy is often a problem:

It may be desirable to keep conversations like this from being understood ...

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