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Senescence of spatial chromatic contrast sensitivity. II. Matching under natural viewing conditions.


Age-related changes in the spatial chromatic contrast sensitivity function of detection, measured along S and L - M cone axes, were demonstrated in a companion paper [Hardy et al., J. Opt. Soc. Am. A 22, 49 (2005)]. Here senescent changes in chromatic contrast appearance were assessed by contrast-matching functions (CMFs). Luminance and chromatic CMFs (S and L - M axes) were compared for younger (age 18-31 yr) and older (age 65-75 yr) trichromatic subjects by using stimuli that were perceptually anchored to the same physical standard contrasts. Subjects matched the contrast of test gratings of various spatial frequencies (0.5-8 cycles per degree) to the standard stimuli under natural viewing conditions. Because of changes in the visual system with age, the standard stimuli were closer to threshold for older subjects; however, in general, the shapes of the CMFs were similar for both groups. The results suggest that the perception of relative contrasts across spatial frequencies is stable with age.

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