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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I recently got a new reciver for my ps3 for bluray...

And I couldn't help wonder what the next xbox will use, if at all, for an audio codec?

Will it be DD? DD+? DD trueHD and then theres the whole DTS camp or will it be some sort of PCM?


Anyone got any guesse's?
 

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I don't think Microsoft will use any of the third party lossless codecs. I think the audio output options will be stereo, WMA Pro, DD, and multichannel PCM. They definately won't output TrueHD or DTS MA. Which pretty much tells you my odds of it including a blu-ray drive. 0 to none. It will continue to be DVD only with install to hard drive, which we have now of course.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeff Flowerday /forum/post/15477918


I don't think Microsoft will use any of the third party lossless codecs. I think the audio output options will be stereo, WMA Pro, DD, and multichannel PCM. They definately won't output TrueHD or DTS MA. Which pretty much tells you my odds of it including a blu-ray drive. 0 to none. It will continue to be DVD only with install to hard drive, which we have now of course.

Could you please explain your train of thought before my head explodes?


OP, if I had to guess I'd say Dolby TrueHD and DTS-MA. By next-generation there will be no excuse not to use lossless audio in games. PCM is a waste of a disc space, lossless sounds just as good as uncompressed audio and saves boatloads of space. Now the real question is 5.1 or 7.1?
 

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I think in the next 2-3 years HDMI AR's will become so common that Lossless through HDMI will be the new DD through optical. No real reason to not have 7.1 sound as an option either, and I also can't see them still using DVD next gen, either no disc at all or Blu Ray.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I wasn't aware opirical (TOS/Link) could do losseless for more the 2 channels due to bandwidth.

I didn't think of at the time of my post (blu-ray) I was mainly wondering what it would output for game sound.


But it will be interesting to see what microsoft does for an optical drive, I don't see how theycould NOT do some sort of blu-ray (maybe the new 4 layer) which mean supporting lots of blu-ray audio codecs
 

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Frankly it is absolutely pointless for the next gen system and games to have HD audio if sound is improperly engineered like it has been for years.

The issue is that many game audio engineers compress the hell out of the sound and crank the volume on top of that to the point of clipping.


Over compression and clipping does make the sound very loud and many folks mistaken that for High Fidelity but that is far from the truth. These cheap tricks introduce lots of distortion and due to limited dynamics there is very little difference between quiet softer sounds and when there is a crescendo of louder sounds, such moments level of impact is neutered.


Unless game audio engineering is improved it doesn't matter if it is provided as HD or not.

If it is mastered as crap it will come out as Hi-Rez crap.

Of course I suspect that half of gamers are either playing on just TV speakers or Lo-FI HTIB systems. ;{ Bummer.


Best Regards

KvE
 

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Well, games are different than movies first of all.


Games are not linear; future events play out based on prior events.


The way games have worked for a LOONNGG time is that they have samples on disc (be they WAV, MP3, or something else), and the game engine mixes them all together and creates the surround experience, which is inherently PCM.


Let me also say this: There is no such thing as a Dolby Digital game! Maybe for cutscenes, but that's it. The reason many games use dolby digital is so that they can transfer multichannel sound via one connection (be it optical or coax). In the PC world, games have been multichannel PCM for basically forever. When the Nforce came out (based on the Xbox's chipset, btw), real-time encoding for Dolby Digital came about so that you didn't need 3 stereo analog cables for surround in games. Granted, the quality wasn't as good, but the connection was simplified.


Now, in this era of HDMI, there's no need whatsoever to encode a game into TrueHD or DTS-HD; it's just a waste of processing power. HDMI allows the "native" (albeit mixed in-engine) PCM to be directly transferred. The game systems of today use Dolby Digital (encoded) as HDMI isn't a given, and the next systems will probably retain that.


I hope I explained things clearly. Dolby Digital in games ONLY came about so that one could listen to surround sound in games (rather than a pro-logic approximation)...they're inherently PCM and always have been. The Dolby Digital is NOT native to the game, the xbox chipset encodes PCM into DD in real-time (on the PS3 one of the SPEs does it) for transfer to an AV receiver. Otherwise (before HDMI) the only option was multichannel analog, which is not viable for a console. With the advent of HDMI, this need is gone, so you will not see TrueHD or DTS-HD in games. You may see it in linear cutscenes to save space, but that's it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by steven975 /forum/post/15489546


Well, games are different than movies first of all.


Games are not linear; future events play out based on prior events.


The way games have worked for a LOONNGG time is that they have samples on disc (be they WAV, MP3, or something else), and the game engine mixes them all together and creates the surround experience, which is inherently PCM.


Let me also say this: There is no such thing as a Dolby Digital game! Maybe for cutscenes, but that's it. The reason many games use dolby digital is so that they can transfer multichannel sound via one connection (be it optical or coax). In the PC world, games have been multichannel PCM for basically forever. When the Nforce came out (based on the Xbox's chipset, btw), real-time encoding for Dolby Digital came about so that you didn't need 3 stereo analog cables for surround in games. Granted, the quality wasn't as good, but the connection was simplified.


Now, in this era of HDMI, there's no need whatsoever to encode a game into TrueHD or DTS-HD; it's just a waste of processing power. HDMI allows the "native" (albeit mixed in-engine) PCM to be directly transferred. The game systems of today use Dolby Digital (encoded) as HDMI isn't a given, and the next systems will probably retain that.


I hope I explained things clearly. Dolby Digital in games ONLY came about so that one could listen to surround sound in games (rather than a pro-logic approximation)...they're inherently PCM and always have been. The Dolby Digital is NOT native to the game, the xbox chipset encodes PCM into DD in real-time (on the PS3 one of the SPEs does it) for transfer to an AV receiver. Otherwise (before HDMI) the only option was multichannel analog, which is not viable for a console. With the advent of HDMI, this need is gone, so you will not see TrueHD or DTS-HD in games. You may see it in linear cutscenes to save space, but that's it.


Thanks for that excellent answer, I had wondered why xbox/360 where DD when PC's as you said where 3 analog cables, and I actully happened to own one of those motherboards that had NF3 with DD and playing far cry in DD.


I had thought that maybe DD was being used as compression mechanism for the different sounds effects.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by PvtChurch /forum/post/15478320


Could you please explain your train of thought before my head explodes?


OP, if I had to guess I'd say Dolby TrueHD and DTS-MA. By next-generation there will be no excuse not to use lossless audio in games. PCM is a waste of a disc space, lossless sounds just as good as uncompressed audio and saves boatloads of space. Now the real question is 5.1 or 7.1?

I didn't say stored as PCM I said output as PCM. I wouldn't doubt that Microsoft would use multi channel WMA lossless as storage as needed and decode appropriately.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ripeer /forum/post/15491215


Thanks for that excellent answer, I had wondered why xbox/360 where DD when PC's as you said where 3 analog cables, and I actully happened to own one of those motherboards that had NF3 with DD and playing far cry in DD.


I had thought that maybe DD was being used as compression mechanism for the different sounds effects.

you're welcome. Actually many of the in-game samples are compressed on the disc itself. Many use simple MP3 in fact. The Dolby Digital is there purely as a transport mechanism; it doesn't add anything that isn't already there.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by KMFDMvsEnya /forum/post/15480301


Frankly it is absolutely pointless for the next gen system and games to have HD audio if sound is improperly engineered like it has been for years.

The issue is that many game audio engineers compress the hell out of the sound and crank the volume on top of that to the point of clipping.


Over compression and clipping does make the sound very loud and many folks mistaken that for High Fidelity but that is far from the truth. These cheap tricks introduce lots of distortion and due to limited dynamics there is very little difference between quiet softer sounds and when there is a crescendo of louder sounds, such moments level of impact is neutered.


Unless game audio engineering is improved it doesn't matter if it is provided as HD or not.

If it is mastered as crap it will come out as Hi-Rez crap.

Of course I suspect that half of gamers are either playing on just TV speakers or Lo-FI HTIB systems. ;{ Bummer.


Best Regards

KvE

I agree but this is why next gen should change that. With more and more people getting into HD and hi end home theatre it is a must. Uncharted on the PS3 is a good example that good audio can be done on a game. 7.1 lossless PCM, yummy.
 

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but do you know for a fact the audio samples for uncharted are stored as PCM files on the disc?


I don't know, but since there is no HDD install, and BD has aweful access times and transfer rates (compared to DVD now), I'm thinking that the samples are not PCM. Given the lack of an install, many samples would have to be stored in memory, and 256MB doesn't go far if you are dealing with PCM.


As far as I know, that's a trade secret that Insomniac probably won't divulge. BD has the space for it, but who knows how the samples are stored on the disc.
 
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