Higher-Order Scattering Delay Networksfor Artificial Reverberation
Computer simulations of room acoustics suffer from an efficiency vs accuracy trade-off, with highly accurate wave-based models being highly computationally expensive, and delay-network-based models lacking in physical accuracy. The Scattering Delay Network (SDN) is a highly efficient recursive structure that renders first order reflections exactly while approximating higher order ones. With the purpose of improving the accuracy of SDNs, in this paper, several variations on SDNs are investigated, including appropriate node placement for exact modeling of higher order reflections, redesigned scattering matrices for physically-motivated scattering, and pruned network connections for reduced computational complexity. The results of these variations are compared to state-of-the-art geometric acoustic models for different shoebox room simulations. Objective measures (Normalized Echo Densities (NEDs) and Energy Decay Curves (EDCs)) showed a close match between the proposed methods and the references. A formal listening test was carried out to evaluate differences in perceived naturalness of the synthesized Room Impulse Responses. Results show that increasing SDNs’ order and adding directional scattering in a fully-connected network improves perceived naturalness, and higher-order pruned networks give similar performance at a much lower computational cost.