Well, actually™ it's not true that perception verbs are normally used with the Present Participle. This is the natural home of the Accusative with Infinitive (AcI), while Present Participle (AcPP) is less frequent in this use, although its use expands in Late Latin to cover even indirect quotations, previously the exclusive domain in the AcI. Pinkster's 2021 OLS vol 2, p.162:
From Early Latin onward, the accusative and infinitive clause is the regular argument
clause with two-place verbs and expressions of perception and cognition, and with
two- and three-place verbs of communication (the traditional Latin term for these
classes of verbs is verba sentiendi et dicendi (sometimes declarandi)).
It's true that the AcPP is more about direct perception (more vivid, to abuse the poor word some more), and AcI is more about knowledge and reflection. I also feel that AcPP is more colloquial and expressive, like the English "Did you see him (his face etc.) when he was trying to eat that thing?" Still, the default interpretation of AcI is that of direct perception, and a different interpretation will generally require limiting context:
Audīvistīn tū mē narrāre haec hodiē? ('Did you hear me telling about this today?' Plautus, Amphitruo 747)
Intereā intrō īre nēminem videō, exīre nēminem ('Meanwhile I don't see anyone either enter or exit' Terence, Andria 363–4)
Meaning #1 can also be expressed using a temporal clause, synonymous with AcPP: audīvī cum tībiā canerēs.
Meaning #2 "able to play" will be normally expressed using the verb scīre: Audīvī equidem tē scīre tībiā canere. Among other options is didicisse "to have learned". Note that posse isn't properly used of abilities, but of possibilities.
Meaning #3 will generally be expressed differently. You can use:
- the verb solēre/solitum esse which is specialised for distinguishing the 'habitual' meaning from 'present-ongoing';
- the verb accipere "to receive info, to be told";
- an expression with sermōnēs, fāma, rūmor "talk, chatter".
You can also exclude meaning #1 by putting the main verb in an Imperfect tense (Present/Past): audiō tē tībiā cantāre. In fact this is how it's normally used in this meaning. If the addressee isn't playing the flute right now, this fixes the interpretation to #2 or #3, though ambiguous between the two, just as in the case of the English "I hear you play the flute".
Notice also that you can exploit Latin's frequentative verbs to express repetiveness, as I've done with cantāre. A double frequentative (cantitāre) will definitily fix the meaning as #3. Moreover, the interpretation is fixed when the infinitive is Perfect, which seems to be over half the time: audiō illum tībiā cecinisse "they say he performed on the flute".
In general, the Latin verb audīre has a different semantic range from the English "to hear", and includes meanings such as "to give ear to, to attend lectures, to grant a request, to approve", but doesn't seem to be usual in the meaning "to receive information". When used this way, it's usually in the Imperfect tenses, as exemplified above.