We introduce a temporal phase mixing model for a description of the frequency-doubling illusion (FDI). The model is generic in the sense that it can be set to refer to retinal ganglion cells, lateral geniculate cells, as well as simple cells in the primary visual cortex (V1). Model parameters, however, strongly suggest that the FDI originates in the cortex. The model shows how noise in the response phases of cells in V1, or in further processing of these phases, easily produces observed behavior of FDI onset as a function of spatiotemporal frequencies. It also shows how this noise can accommodate physiologically plausible spatial delays in comparing neural signals over a distance. The model offers an explanation for the disappearance of the FDI at sufficiently high spatial frequencies via increasingly correlated coding of neighboring grating stripes. Further, when the FDI is equated to vanishing perceptual discrimination between asynchronous contrast-reversal gratings, the model proposes the possibility that the FDI shows a resonance behavior at sufficiently high spatial frequencies, by which it is alternately perceived and not perceived in sequential temporal frequency bands.
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