Such interpretive processes can be demonstrated by alternating a sinusoidal signal with bursts of noise. Whether the signal is perceived as pulsating or continuous depends upon the relative intensities of the signal and noise.
In this demonstration, 125-ms bursts of a 2000-Hz tone alternate with 125-ms bursts of noise (1875-2125 Hz), as shown below. The noise level remains constant, while the tone level decreases in 15 steps of -l dB after each 4 tones.
The pulsation threshold is given by the level at which the 2000-Hz to sound continuous.
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T.Houtgast (1972), "Psychophysical evidence for lateral inhibition in hearing," J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 51, 1885-94.