combination tone

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A musical tone such as a difference tone or a summation tone that is heard in a complex tone but is not present in the sensations produced by the constituent components of the stimulus when they are presented singly. When there are two components, the lower having a frequency of f1 and the higher a frequency of f2, then the most easily audible combination tone is generally 2f1f2, thus if tones with frequencies of 1,800 hertz and 2,000 hertz are presented, then a combination tone with frequency 1,600 hertz is heard, because (2 × 1,800) − 2,000 = 1,600. See also cancellation method, missing fundamental illusion, otogenic tone.

Subjects: Psychology.

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