, Volume 198, Issue 2-3, pp 221-231

Perceived timing of vestibular stimulation relative to touch, light and sound

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Abstract

Different senses have different processing times. Here we measured the perceived timing of galvanic vestibular stimulation (GVS) relative to tactile, visual and auditory stimuli. Simple reaction times for perceived head movement (438 ± 49 ms) were significantly longer than to touches (245 ± 14 ms), lights (220 ± 13 ms), or sounds (197 ± 13 ms). Temporal order and simultaneity judgments both indicated that GVS had to occur about 160 ms before other stimuli to be perceived as simultaneous with them. This lead was significantly less than the relative timing predicted by reaction time differences compatible with an incomplete tendency to compensate for differences in processing times.