The audio experience is one of the most important aspects in VR, as known to all. Oculus VR came up with significant breakthroughs for spatializing audio to sound sources. Today, the company shared on their website regarding the new audio advancements, which are the following:
It replicates the ways of interactions of sound waves, with the environment, and with head and ears of the user. This provides a more realistic essence of the virtual reality world.
The HRTF or head-related transfer function is used for VR. This stimulates the reach of sound to the ears, offering a full 3D audio experience. The design of the Rift headset ensures a perfect presentation of synchronizing video and audio.
These are the tools that developers at Oculus VR are using to make more immersive and expressive VR contents.
Furthermore, VR is able enough in influencing developments of traditional games and films. Sound can be provided from any direction to the user’s audio. This comes off with challenges and opportunities that developers can keep working on.
Spatialization represents certain audio sources, directions, and even distances. In accordance with these, the launch of Touch controls is to make VR experiences more realistic. The newly introduced Near-Field HRTF is another addition in this aspect, bettering the executions of Rift’s existing audio filters. To put it simply, audio experience in VR reaches the users in a more believable manner.
Volumetric Sound Sources
This is another audio advancement by Oculus VR, for enhanced VR experiences in terms of hearing. Using the Volumetric Sound Sources, designers do not have to pinpoint a sound source. Instead, they can provide a radius for the reach of the sound. Therefore, with the increment of the radius assigned in devices, the sound’s source expands as well.
This also means that users getting closer to the radius will hear the sound progressively louder. Stepping inside the radius will let the user hear the sound from all around. Volumetric Sound Sources are an important tool for reverb balance and dynamics too, offering the designers input ideal mixings to devices.
Dream Team at Oculus VR
Software Engineering Manager Pete Stirling pinpointed developmental opportunities in consistent listening offerings of VR headsets. Echoing him was Audio Design Manager Tom Smurdon, expressing excitement regarding the new changes. Both Sterling and Smurdon further revealed their analytical conclusions on the advancements and their foresighted views on the VR field regarding audio.
In the following month, the Oculus VR team led by these personnel will present “2017 Breakthroughs in Spatial Audio Technologies” at OC4.