Sony has recently come out and said that audio is going to have a much higher focus for PS5 as opposed to previous consoles. The audio jump between PS3 and PS4 wasn’t much of an upgrade, so the company wants to make sure that their audio exceeds expectations this time around. They don’t want to forget about the audio and only focus on the visuals again.
While the specs for the PS5’s audio haven’t released yet, there has been some news about how the new audio will work. Sony has said that the console will have a custom 3D audio that will give players sounds from above, behind, and both the sides on a constant basis while they are playing.
There have also been some game developers who have talked about how audio needs to improve on next gen and how the PS5 will be addressing that problem. For example, Samuel Justice, Co-Founder and Supervising Sound Designer of Sweet Justice Sound had this to say about the audio ability of the PS5:
“I think the raw computing power needed to create realistic audio models is largely overlooked. In the past, we have managed to create fairly good representations of acoustic modelling through a lot of trickery and clever techniques. The ability to fully realize automated 3D audio is a big step forward for game audio and will certainly result in much richer experiences.”
Justice’s company has worked on big games such as Fortnite and Mortal Kombat 11, and they are now working on Half-Life: Alyx. If a group that good at audio design thinks gaming consoles are in that desperate need of an upgrade, it is something that console makers need to take more seriously.
Marcus Klang, Lead Sound Designer at Zoink Games, went on record as well, talking about how raytracing can improve audio for gaming:
“It can be used to improve the sense of realism by more accurate adjustments to the audio depending on the environment surrounding the player, in real-time.”
It will be interesting to see how Sony will be able to advance the quality of sound design in gaming and if Microsoft will do the same for their next gen console. Gamers will have to wait and see what is in store as the new generation of consoles get closer to launch next year.
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