Temporal and spectral dependencies in the processing of Spanish and English stop consonant voicing

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Previous findings show that listeners do not rely on onset f0 when processing stop consonant voicing with lead VOT (Llanos et al., 2013). According to a temporal-based account, onset f0 has no effect because the voicing decision is biased by the presence of prevoicing that precedes the occurrence of onset f0 in the signal. According to a spectral-based account, onset f0 has no effect because its contribution to low frequency energy is insignificant compared to that of VOT in voicing lead. Specific predictions of the two hypotheses for the whole VOT continuum were evaluated in English and Spanish voicing decisions. Results support the spectral-based account, demonstrating that the peak effect of onset f0 occurred in both languages at the VOT values where onset f0’s contribution to the low frequency energy would be most appreciable.


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