While talking about this question: What does it mean to play a note for half a second? I got to thinking - how short can a note actually be for us to perceive its fundamental pitch?
Obviously real world notes often fade in at the start or have initial attacks that are somewhat 'noisy' and aperiodic. But I'm less interested in that aspect; I'm just wondering, given a note of stable pitch at a clearly audible volume, how long it takes us to recognise that pitch.
I'm sure there are a number of possible variables - harmonic spectrum (timbre) of the note and frequency are two obvious ones, and it is probably listener-dependent as well.
I'm more interested in how fast people can recognise pitch than in what a computer might be able to do.