Oculus Quest Development

All Oculus Quest developers MUST PASS the concept review prior to gaining publishing access to the Quest Store and additional resources. Submit a concept document for review as early in your Quest application development cycle as possible. For additional information and context, please see Submitting Your App to the Oculus Quest Store.

Introduction to Audio in Virtual Reality

Audio plays a critical role in virtual reality (VR) immersion. These best practices outline good VR audio design.

Spatialize audio for any sound that has an obvious in-app source. The audio should appear to come from same direction as the source. The source should also move to follow the user’s head movements when they wear headphones, but not if they use external speakers. Allow users to choose their output device in game settings, and make sure in-game sounds appear to emanate from the correct location by accounting for head position relative to the output device. Additionally, for positionally tracked apps, sound should get louder as the user leans towards their source, even if the avatar is otherwise stationary.

Not all sound needs to be spatialized. Ambient room noise, background music, and other sounds that have no obvious spatial source can be played without spatialization.

We recommend every app include a spatialized audio SDK. Oculus provides audio spatialization and propagation tools for the following game engines and middleware. See the Audio sections for Unity, Unreal or Native development for more information.

Learn

Sound design and mixing is an art form, and VR is a new medium in which it is expressed. Whether you’re an aspiring sound designer or a veteran, VR provides many new challenges and inverts some of the common beliefs we’ve come to rely upon when creating music and sound cues for games and traditional media.

Watch Brian Hook’s Introduction to VR Audio from Oculus Connect 2014. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kBBuuvEP5Z4

Watch Tom Smurdon and Brian Hook’s talk at GDC 2015 about VR Audio: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2RDV6D7jDVs

Our Introduction to VR Audio white paper looks at key ideas and how to address them in VR.

Learn more about audio propagation simulation in the Facebook Reality Labs blog post

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If you’re interested in learning more about Oculus VR audio or just want to chat with other audio-minded developers, drop by our Audio Developer Forums.

Learn More About Audio for Virtual Reality

TopicDescription
Audio in Virtual RealityIntroduces fundamental concepts in audio development for virtual reality (VR) with an emphasis on key factors that deserve development attention.
Localization and the Human Auditory SystemDescribes how humans localize sound.
3D Audio SpatializationDescribes spatialization and head-related transfer functions.
Listening DevicesDescribes different listening devices and their advantages and disadvantages.
Environmental ModelingDescribes environmental modeling including reverberation and reflections.
Sound Design for SpatializationNow that we’ve established how humans place sounds in the world and, more importantly, how we can fool people into thinking that a sound is coming from a particular point in space, we need to examine how we must change our approach to sound design to support spatialization.
Mixing Scenes for Virtual RealityAs with sound design, mixing a scene for VR is an art as well as a science, and the following recommendations may include caveats.
VR Audio GlossaryDefinitions of technical terms VR audio terms.