Audio Display Hardware Investigation for Future Dismounted Soldier Computer Systems


  1. Bos, J.C.
  2. Tack, D.W.
Corporate Authors
Defence R&D Canada - Toronto, Toronto ONT (CAN);Humansystems Inc, Guelph ONT (CAN)
Audio displays are required to provide radio communications, multi-channel auditory information, and 3D audio feedback that can be perceived by soldiers in a high-noise, combat environment without decreasing the soldier’s ability to detect local sounds and voices in the free field. A comparison of five types of audio displays (bone conduction, in-ear, unoccluded headset, partial and fully occluded headset) was conducted based upon existing literature, user feedback and the authors’ experience. This report presents the results of that comparison. Overall, the bone conduction headset is rated better than the other types of audio displays because it has unique advantages in terms of Free Field Sound Detection, Equipment Compatibility, Fit and Comfort, Tactical Feasibility, and Durability. The bone conduction headset is best suited for the tasks of soldiers where durability, comfort, and compatibility with helmets and other equipment are critically important. The bone conduction headset provides the unique advantage of enabling the wearer to simultaneously hear system-generated and free field sounds. The fully occluded circumaural headset was rated second best overall and has unique advantages in terms of Spatialization. The occluded headset is the best system for displaying 3D audio information. The fully occluded and in-ear headsets are rated highest in terms of Audio Display Performance and Sound Discrimination. Each of these systems is capable of providing strong attenuat

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Soldier Information Requirements Technology Demonstration Project;SIREQ TD;audio display;radio;communications;auditory information;3D audio;bone conduction;bone conduction headset
Report Number
DRDC-TORONTO-CR-2005-038 — Contractor Report
Date of publication
15 May 2005
Number of Pages
Electronic Document(PDF)

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