Survey results: Humanized Bach music

Survey Humanized music: Preference

Musical rhythms played by humans are inevitably accompanied by small deviations from the exat beat pattern (typically on the order of 10-20 ms). These deviations exhibit so-called "long-range correlations (LRC)". Adding LRC to rhythmic beat patterns is called LRC humanizing. In contrast, professional audio editing software offers a humanizing feature which adds white noise (WN) to beat patterns, referred to as WN humanizing.

What does LRC humanizing sound like?

In this online survey created in collaboration with Prof. Theo Geisel, participants rated Bach music played by a computer: Invention no.1 (BWV 772) and Prelude no.2 (BWV 871). The musical pieces were modified in one of the following ways:

  1. LRC humanizing (not yet available in audio software): called "version LRC"
  2. WN humanizing (currently implemented in Pro Tools HD, Nuendo,...): called "version WN"

Listen to the humanized Bach music here. Total no. of completed surveys that fulfill the minimum requirements: N=219.

View distribution of age, musical expertise and gender and screenshots illustrating how the survey looked like.


Main results

LRC humanizing is preferred over WN humanizing.

A) All 219 test persons


B) Subgroup: Professional musicians