Total perceived audio-visual quality of a home theater or virtual reality system cannot be measured by an independent evaluation of picture or sound quality. A body of evidence suggests that the two perceptual modalities, seeing and hearing, interact and reinforce one another in a complex relationship. Therefore, experiments involving both modalities require a novel approach that recognizes domains of cooperative interaction between the senses. This paper reviews broad evidence of interactions between seeing and hearing, and explains the experimental design developed for measuring interactions in a home theater. The approach has been used successfully to assess the subjective quality of a standard home-theater system using Dolby Surround programs. The companion paper by Bech, et al. (Preprint 4096), presents the results of these experiments.

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