Experimental Brain Research

, Volume 236, Issue 7, pp 1869–1880 | Cite as

Long-term music training modulates the recalibration of audiovisual simultaneity

  • Crescent JicolEmail author
  • Michael J. Proulx
  • Frank E. Pollick
  • Karin Petrini
Research Article


To overcome differences in physical transmission time and neural processing, the brain adaptively recalibrates the point of simultaneity between auditory and visual signals by adapting to audiovisual asynchronies. Here, we examine whether the prolonged recalibration process of passively sensed visual and auditory signals is affected by naturally occurring multisensory training known to enhance audiovisual perceptual accuracy. Hence, we asked a group of drummers, of non-drummer musicians and of non-musicians to judge the audiovisual simultaneity of musical and non-musical audiovisual events, before and after adaptation with two fixed audiovisual asynchronies. We found that the recalibration for the musicians and drummers was in the opposite direction (sound leading vision) to that of non-musicians (vision leading sound), and change together with both increased music training and increased perceptual accuracy (i.e. ability to detect asynchrony). Our findings demonstrate that long-term musical training reshapes the way humans adaptively recalibrate simultaneity between auditory and visual signals.


Recalibration Multisensory perception Simultaneity judgement 



We would like to thank Dr Chris Bevan and Eliot Farmer for engaging and useful discussion on what it means to be a drummer.

Author contributions

KP designed the study, KP and FEP piloted the study, CJ conducted the experiment, KP and MJP supervised CJ during the experiment conduction, KP and CJ analyzed the data, KP, CJ, FEP and MJP wrote the manuscript.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare no competing financial interests.

Supplementary material

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Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 351 KB) (1.4 mb)
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PsychologyUniversity of BathBathUK
  2. 2.School of PsychologyUniversity of GlasgowGlasgowUK
  3. 3.Department of Computer ScienceUniversity of BathBathUK

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