VR Audio Design, Engineering and Mastering Guide

While there is a lot that goes into delivering a high quality, immersive VR experience, audio is an element that is sometimes overlooked in regards to how essential it is in delivering that heightened sense of immersion.

Within this guide we will cover many of the core concepts that will help you to design, engineer, and mix your VR audio so that you are producing the ideal sense of calm and serene, or that perfect jump scare.

Get started with Oculus Spatial Audio Technology

Check out the following technical documentation for your preferred engine which includes unique docs for each engine/middleware solution.

Leverage your preferred engine + middleware

We work to ensure that our tools and integration work seamlessly with all major game engines and audio middleware solutions. See below for a few of the relevant documents to help you get started.

Here is an overview of each resource featured within the Oculus VR audio guide. These will help if you are about to kick off your next VR audio project, or give yourself the foundational knowledge to more effectively acquire a new member of your team.

Localization and the Human Auditory SystemDescribes how humans localize sound in three dimensions. Topics include: Directional localization, head-Related transfer functions (HRTFs), and distance perception.
3D Audio SpatializationGoes into more depth on spatialization and head-related transfer functions. Topics include: Capturing and applying HRTFs, head tracking, and distance modeling.
Listening DevicesReviews different listening devices,their advantages and disadvantages. Topics include: Closed back headphones, headphone correction, and external speaker systems.
Environmental ModelingDescribes the processes and concepts that enable environmental audio modeling, our ability to mimic the acoustic effects of nearby geometry. Topics include: Reverberations, reflections, world geometry, acoustics, presence and immersion.
Sound Design for SpatializationExamines how we must change our approach to sound design to support spatialization. Topics include: Accurate 3D positioning of sources, time of arrival, and latency.
Mixing Scenes for Virtual RealityProvides a few best practices to remember when mixing your soundscape. Topics include: Distance attenuation curves, reverberation, and general mixing recommendations.
VR Audio GlossaryDefines numerous terms specific to VR audio design, engineering, and mixing.

Informative video and articles on VR audio

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.

Here are just a few of the informative materials we’ve provided over the years, while you can check out an overview of this full guide below.

Introductory video presentations covering the core concepts of VR Audio:

Oculus Connect Presentations and articles that share the latest tools and technologies that drive VR Audio

Learn and discuss VR Audio in the Oculus Developer Forums

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.