Mental Floss

Are You Tone Deaf?

Chris Higgins

Researcher Jake Mandell has created an online test which measures pitch perception as well as musical memory. The test plays two brief passages of very similar music back-to-back, and you press a button to indicate whether you think the tunes are the same or different. (Often the differences are subtle -- maddeningly subtle.) At the end of the test you can fill out an optional survey about race, sex, and age; data is collected anonymously and periodically analyzed.

The test is hard -- my professional musician friend got a 66%. You can take the test here, or read analysis of over 100,000 test results. Also interesting: Wikipedia on tone deafness. So: how'd you do?