‘Masking’ occurs when one sound of a given frequency is overlapped by another sound in the same frequency range at a higher level. The original sound is made imperceptible due to the impeding signal.

An example of this is when the consonant sounds in speech are lost to the listener in a noisy room. Because consonants tend to exist in higher frequency ranges, the white noise of a room with a lot of higher frequencies can mask those consonants and make them unheard.

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