Project Morpheus Using HRTF Audio, Unity Suggests

Though it may not get as much coverage as visuals and input, audio is an important part of the virtual reality (VR) experience and essential to making players feel as if they have stepped into another world. Back at the 2015 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in January, Oculus VR revealed that it was enhancing the audio capabilities of the Oculus Rift head-mounted display (HMD) by integrating Head-Related Transfer Function (HRTF) technology into one of its software development kits (SDKs). It’s now been suggested that Sony Computer Entertainment (SCE) has done the same for Project Morpheus.

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During a ‘3D Audio in VR’ talk at this weekend’s Shayla Games VR Jam in Copenhagen, Denmark, Unity Technologies’ Wayne Johnson suggested that Project Morpheus uses a ‘generic’ HRTF model. SCE has previously only talked about using binaural audio for its kit. In the case of the Oculus Rift, HRTF works with the device’s head-tracking tech to calculate where a user’s head is and how that would affect the sounds they’re hearing. Oculus VR referred to this as ‘true 3D audio spacialization’, and it appears that Project Morpheus could be seeing the same treatment.

This wouldn’t be the only upgrade that Project Morpheus has seen in 2015. Back at the Game Developers Conference (GDC) in March a completely new prototype for the device was revealed, sporting a 1080p OLED display with a 120Hz refresh rate. At the same event SCE also confirmed that Project Morpheus would be launching in the first half of 2016. The company is set to continue the conversation on Project Morpheus at E3 2015 in a few weeks’ time, revealing new information about the device and compatible games at the event from 16th – 18th June.

VRFocus will continue to follow Project Morpheus closely, reporting back with the latest updates on the device.

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