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360 Spatial Audio focus point quiet Monitor Controllers
Old 6th June 2018
Gear Nut

360 Spatial Audio focus point quiet

I'm working on a project that is a 360 video of a static location, in which I am re-creating all of the sounds in that environment. I am using the FB Spatial Workstation plugins, which I have used in the past on more traditional 360 videos that have music, VO, dialogue, and SFX.

Because this video takes place in a static location it seems simple, but the reality is that when I turn to look in one direction and want to focus the sound on that direction, attenuating the sounds in my peripheral vision on the left and right of my focal point correctly has become quite difficult. Those sounds are much louder than what I want the viewer to focus on. Obviously, this is built around the concept of the phantom center in a stereo image being quieter than if it was panned hard left or hard right, but in a 360 environment, the stereo image is constantly changing!

How are you fine folks addressing this issue? Or is it an issue still trying to be solved?

We use the Samsung Gear VR mostly for playback, and if you are creating a 360 video for Facebook or side-loading on a Gear VR, you are given a wonderful FOCUS option that includes an Off-focus level, but as this project will end up on an Oculus Rift, unfortunately that option disappears.

Very interested to hear everyone's thoughts. Thanks!
Old 9th June 2018
Gear Maniac

I'm not sure how I'd go about that with FB360. Have you tried asking on the official FB Page? The programmers and many talented mixers are a part of it.
Old 15th June 2018
Lives for gear
PatrickFaith's Avatar

I'm finding I really didn't understand human listening as I get deeper and deeper into immersive audio. For example, I didn't realize the effect vision and head movement modified what I hear. I kind of thought a good hrtf would do everything I need, but with my testing I find I personally barely use HRTF for localization but use head movement and visual queues that almost wipe out what I'm hearing. The McGurk effect is a good example, where for me the visual que completly overrides what I'm hearing:

Basicially until recently I had no idea how much my brain was overriding what I was hearing. I think there's a ton of "sound illusions", but with immersive sound on headphones it's really obvious when this gets messed up. Also how large this effect is on just about everyting has surpised me while doing vr testing. I mean I have always been aware of the loudness wars, where things like commercials where trying to be louder for attention, but the extent of how complex hearing is (and how much it is in post brain processing vs actual hearing) has surprised me.
Old 26th June 2018
Gear Nut

PatrickFaith, I feel ya. Immersive audio is an exhausting, yet exhilarating journey! I actually didn't know about the McGurk so thanks for sharing! For this project though, the video is 100% static so no McGurkin' is messing with the viewer this time around.

Haven't been able to fully solve this issue. The Focus feature on 2nd Order Ambisonics for side-loading to the Gear VR or posting to Facebook is pretty fantastic, but definitely requires a remix. We'll see how things continue to progress, as this world is a constantly evolving and growing medium.
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