A previous study tested the validity of simulations of the appearance of a natural image (from different observation distances) generated by using a visual model and contrast sensitivity functions of the individual observers [J. Opt. Soc. Am. A 13, 1131 (1996)]. Deleting image spatial-frequency components that should be undetectable made the simulations indistinguishable from the original images at distances larger than the simulated distance. The simulated observation distance accurately predicted the distance at which the simulated image could be discriminated from the original image. Owing to the characteristic of natural images’ spatial spectra, the individual contrast sensitivity functions (CSF’s) used in the simulations of the previous study were actually tested only over a narrow range of retinal spatial frequencies. To test the CSF’s over a wide range of frequencies, the same simulations and testing procedure were applied to five contrast versions of the images (10–300%). This provides a stronger test of the model, of the simulations, and specifically of the CSF’s used. The relevant CSF for a discrimination task was found to be obtained by using 1-octave Gabor stimuli measured in a contrast detection task. The relevant CSF data had to be measured over a range of observation distances, owing to limitations of the displays.
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