EAX, EAX HD and surround in games???

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Leroy, Jun 12, 2002.

  1. Leroy

    Leroy Second Unit

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    During my recent round of upgrades I picked up a Soundblaster Live! Digital 5.1 card. I've got a couple of games that support EAX (GTA3 and Soldier of Fortune 2). In GTA3 I only get 4 channel surround, while in SOF2 I get 5 channel. I've got Creatives Inspire 5300 5.1 speaker set hooked up to it.

    I know this is a stupid question (I've been holding onto my PCI 128 for too long!)but I haven't kept up with the advancements in game sound for PC's. Although both games boxes have the EAX HD logo, I'm guessing that the game itself has to be programmed for X number of channels?

    Also, since the Audigy cards are the only cards that support EAX HD do EAX capable cards like mine get a "downconverted"(for lack of a better term)EAX soundtrack?

    Can anyone clear this up a bit? Creative has no real explanation on their website.
     
  2. Matt DeVillier

    Matt DeVillier Supporting Actor

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    as I understand it (and I could be off somewhat), EAX has nothing to do with positional audio. It's strictly environmental effects (reverb, occlusion modeling, etc). DirectSound3d (of which EAX is an extension) is responsible for the postioning of sounds in 3D space. It's not reponsible for what sounds get sent to what output channel of your sound card. That is the job of the sound card driver software.

    as Far as EAX HD goes, EAX HD is EAX "3.0", which is a superset of EAX 2.0. so if a game is programmed for EAX HD and your card only supports EAX 2.0, then you get EAX 2.0 and miss out on any effects that are EAX HD specific.

    since you have the inspire 5300, are you using analog or digital connection(s) from your sound card to the speakers? if you're using digital, then you will only get "4.1" output from music/games since the digital connection can carry 2 stereo PCM channels at most (unless it is carrying an encoded DD/DTS bitstream). using the analog connection should give you "5.1" output (meanning output from all speakers, not necessarily discrete) no matter what the source (music, games, dvd) assuming the creative software is set up properly
     
  3. Leroy

    Leroy Second Unit

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    Thanks, that helps clear it up a bit.[​IMG]
    I'm using the analog output to my speakers. Soldier of Fortune gives me all 5 channels and sounds amazing (but during cut scenes it uses only 4 channels, all actual gameplay is 5 channel). GTA3 also sounds great (traffic whizzing by, street conversations surround you etc.) but does not utilize the center channel.
     
  4. Max Leung

    Max Leung Producer

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    Most PC games that support DirectSound 3D do not make use of the center channel. Soldier of Fortune 2 apparently does, however.

    It's not much different than the Xbox games...most only give you 4.1. And those with 5.1 generally only use the center for dialog or status sound effects.
     
  5. Dave E H

    Dave E H Supporting Actor

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    I presume the Audigy cards support EAX 3.0?
     
  6. Matt DeVillier

    Matt DeVillier Supporting Actor

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  7. Dave E H

    Dave E H Supporting Actor

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    Excellent...
     

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