OBJECTIVE: In recent years, a new type of speaker called the parametric speaker has been used to generate highly directional sound, and these speakers are now commercially available. In our previous study, we verified that the burden of the parametric speaker was lower than that of the general speaker for endocrine functions. However, nothing has yet been demonstrated about the effects of the shorter distance than 2.6 m between parametric speakers and the human body. Therefore, we investigated the distance effect on endocrinological function and subjective evaluation.
METHODS: Nine male subjects participated in this study. They completed three consecutive sessions: a 20-min quiet period as a baseline, a 30-min mental task period with general speakers or parametric speakers, and a 20-min recovery period. We measured salivary cortisol and chromogranin A (CgA) concentrations. Furthermore, subjects took the Kwansei-gakuin Sleepiness Scale (KSS) test before and after the task and also a sound quality evaluation test after it. Four experiments, one with a speaker condition (general speaker and parametric speaker), the other with a distance condition (0.3 m and 1.0 m), were conducted, respectively, at the same time of day on separate days. We used three-way repeated measures ANOVA (speaker factor × distance factor × time factor) to examine the effects of the parametric speaker.
RESULTS: We found that the endocrinological functions were not significantly different between the speaker condition and the distance condition.
CONCLUSION: The results also showed that the physiological burdens increased with progress in time independent of the speaker condition and distance condition.