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Exp Brain Res. 2012 Jan;216(1):11-9. doi: 10.1007/s00221-011-2864-z. Epub 2011 Oct 25.

Effect of frequency difference on sensitivity of beats perception.

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Human Robot Interaction Research Center, KAIST, Daejeon, Korea.


Two vibrations with slightly different frequencies induce the beats phenomenon. In tactile perception, when two pins of different frequencies stimulate the fingertips, an individual perceives a beats caused by a summation stimulus of the two vibrations. The present study demonstrates experimentally that humans can perceive another vibration based on the beats phenomenon when two tactile stimuli with slightly different frequencies are stimulated on the finger pad with a small contactor in different locations at the same time. Moreover, we examined the amplitude of the detection threshold to be able to perceive beats phenomenon on the index finger with 5 carrier frequency (63.1, 100, 158.5, 251.2, and 398.1 Hz) and 4 beats frequency (2.5, 3.98, 6.31, and 10 Hz) when two stimuli 1 mm distance apart are vibrated at a slightly different frequency. From the experiments, it is concluded that the amplitude threshold to be able to perceive beats decreases as the standard frequency increases under 398 Hz. Furthermore, from comparing the absolute detection threshold and beats detection threshold, as the carrier frequency increases, the required amplitude at two pins for the detection of beats decreases compared to absolute vibration.

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