Winkler, I., Tervaniemi, M., Schröger, E., Wolff, C., & Näätänen, R. (1998). Preattentive processing of auditory spatial information in humans. Neuroscience Letters, 242(1), 49-52.

Preattentive processing of auditory spatial information in humans

Auditory event-related potentials were recorded from reading subjects to frequent and infrequent tones. Frequent tones presented by a loudspeaker in front of the subject were interspersed with infrequent tones delivered either by one of the symmetrically-placed lateral loudspeakers, or by both lateral loudspeakers simultaneously. This latter sound was perceived as originating from a spacious source in the direction of the central loudspeaker. A sizable mismatch negativity (MMN) and P3a were elicited by all three infrequent stimuli, suggesting that infrequent changes in the direction or perceived spaciousness of the sound source were preattentively detected. In addition, a dissociation between the MMN and P3a amplitudes was found: whereas lateral deviants elicited a larger P3a than the simultaneous left + right deviant, the MMN amplitude was approximately equal for all three deviants.


Cognitive and Biological Psychology

University of Leipzig
Faculty of Life Sciences
Institute of Psychology
Neumarkt 9-19
D-04109 Leipzig


Dagmar Schrödl
Phone: +49 341 97-39570
Email: dagmar dot schroedl at uni-leipzig dot de

Dorit Thieme
Phone: +49 341 97-39540
Email: d dot thieme at uni-leipzig dot de

Fax: +49 341 97-39271