The Niche Hypothesis

Discussion in 'Headphone & Earphone General Discussion' started by Lauri Cular, May 19, 2017.

  1. Lauri Cular

    Lauri Cular Well Balanced

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    This is not directly connected with headphones, but it's pretty interesting!

    You may be aware that when producing music, the production work involves keeping everything apart in terms of frequency, so we can clearly hear it. For example, if a guitar in a song lies at the same fequency as a singer, then these sounds may muddy each other up.

    One solution is to EQ the relevant sounds so there is less frequency overlap, making the two sounds more distinct to the listener.

    Nature has had a while to get to grips with this problem; if you're a seabird and you are calling out for a mate, you're going to be quite lonely if nobody can hear you over the sound of crashing waves and those howling coastal winds. That's why we have those piercing shrieks from seagulls.

    [​IMG]

    Other animals who share the habitat nearby have their own frequencies allocated, and so there's little or no confusion. This is known as the 'Niche Hypothesis'. A researcher called Bernie Krause has done a bit of work in this field (probably many fields actually), recording the sounds of nature and checking the results.

    Some animals even occupy more than one niche in this frequency spectrum, and there is the concept of 'territory' here, as well as with the physical space they occupy in the habitat itself!

    Further reading - http://xenopraxis.net/readings/krause_nichehypothesis.pdf
     
    Oscar Stewart and dalethorn like this.
  2. dalethorn

    dalethorn Obsessive Auditor

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    That's interesting. I've been carrying some of Bernie's bird-song recordings on my music players for years. My own pet bird (cockatiel) is fascinated by the recordings.
     
  3. Lauri Cular

    Lauri Cular Well Balanced

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    Well what do you know? I have a cockatiel too! I'll have a look for some of those recordings, although I think tiels can be quite individual about what interests them.
     
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