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Thread: Steam Audio

  1. #1
    8

    Lightbulb Steam Audio

    Hey folks,

    Feel free to post any Steam Audio related questions or experiments you do here, so we can keep things consolidated and make it easier for people to get help.

    Be sure to grab the user manual if you're just getting started - it should be pretty helpful.

    We track known issues over at our GitHub issues page.

    We have a forum over at our Steam community that you're welcome to explore - you may find useful discussions there as well.

    Thanks!

  2. #2
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    Are you going to fix steam voice chat getting busted by server travel?

  3. #3
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    Hi,

    Just downloaded the 4.16.0 Preview 2 download for UE4 on IOS, want to play and have a look at the new UE4 Audio Engine and Steam Audio plugin.

    Got the manual open, first thing it says to do is to Enable the Audio Mixer Functionality.
    - Says to click the down arrow next to the 4.16.0 Engine and click on 'Create Shortcut".
    - When I click on the arrow all it show is Options, Set Current, Remove and Verify.

    Is there another way to create a shortcut to the Editor?

    Thanks!

  4. #4
    0
    Quote Originally Posted by Rodnino View Post
    Hi,

    Just downloaded the 4.16.0 Preview 2 download for UE4 on IOS, want to play and have a look at the new UE4 Audio Engine and Steam Audio plugin.

    Got the manual open, first thing it says to do is to Enable the Audio Mixer Functionality.
    - Says to click the down arrow next to the 4.16.0 Engine and click on 'Create Shortcut".
    - When I click on the arrow all it show is Options, Set Current, Remove and Verify.

    Is there another way to create a shortcut to the Editor?

    Thanks!
    Hey Rodnino,

    As of 4.16, we will only be supporting Windows. Generally, your goal is to pass the -audiomixer flag to the UE4 executable. I think this may be helpful to you: http://stackoverflow.com/questions/1308755/launch-an-app-on-os-x-with-command-line

  5. #5
    0
    Quote Originally Posted by BlackRang666 View Post
    Are you going to fix steam voice chat getting busted by server travel?
    Voice chat is separate from Steam Audio.

  6. #6
    0
    Is there a way to control the occlusion attenuation amount (with it enabled I mean)? Seems like right now occluders just 100% cancel out the direct sound regardless of any phonon material or sound attenuation settings, even if they're very thin. The built in occlusion system doesn't seem to work with steam audio enabled so the "Occlusion Volume Attenuation" slider doesn't do anything. I'm pretty sure some of the Impulsonic videos demonstrate diffraction and partial transmission so what happened to that?

    Also, the model doesn't seem to update when moveable actors are moved, at least the occlusion, even with everything set to Real-Time. Is this a bug or a limitation of the system?
    Last edited by mag.py; 05-11-2017 at 02:30 PM.

  7. #7
    0
    Quote Originally Posted by mag.py View Post
    Is there a way to control the occlusion attenuation amount (with it enabled I mean)? Seems like right now occluders just 100% cancel out the direct sound regardless of any phonon material or sound attenuation settings, even if they're very thin. The built in occlusion system doesn't seem to work with steam audio enabled so the "Occlusion Volume Attenuation" slider doesn't do anything. I'm pretty sure some of the Impulsonic videos demonstrate diffraction and partial transmission so what happened to that?

    Also, the model doesn't seem to update when moveable actors are moved, at least the occlusion, even with everything set to Real-Time. Is this a bug or a limitation of the system?
    Currently, we do not support transmission (sound passing through geometry) - we offer Partial occlusion, which will smoothly interpolate direct sound down to 0 volume as the source passes out of view.

    We only support static geometry at the moment. We do, however, have the ability to hook into a custom raytracer, so I plan to experiment with using the UE4 raytracer and see if we can get dynamic geometry without having to implement complex data structures in our backend.

  8. #8
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    Hello,

    I noticed that you are already using ambisonics as part of your engine. Is it possible to play B-Format files with head tracked rotation and decoding to binaural?

    Thanks!

    Hector

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by freeman_valve View Post
    Hey Rodnino,

    As of 4.16, we will only be supporting Windows. Generally, your goal is to pass the -audiomixer flag to the UE4 executable. I think this may be helpful to you: http://stackoverflow.com/questions/1308755/launch-an-app-on-os-x-with-command-line
    Thanks for the information, I find it hard to believe that use will be only supporting Windows, could you clarify more please? I've downloaded the 4.16.0 Preview 3, the plugins are there and enabled, just can't enable the Audio Mixer Functionality. Can you tell me whether this will work on a Mac and if not what is the point of being able to add it to the library in the Epic Games Launcher. The UE4 Roadmap on Trello under Done and Ships with 4.16 says in the New Audio Engine Card that Mac is one of the platforms targeted for 'Early Access' Release.
    Attached Images Attached Images  

  10. #10
    0
    Quote Originally Posted by Rodnino View Post
    Thanks for the information, I find it hard to believe that use will be only supporting Windows, could you clarify more please? I've downloaded the 4.16.0 Preview 3, the plugins are there and enabled, just can't enable the Audio Mixer Functionality. Can you tell me whether this will work on a Mac and if not what is the point of being able to add it to the library in the Epic Games Launcher. The UE4 Roadmap on Trello under Done and Ships with 4.16 says in the New Audio Engine Card that Mac is one of the platforms targeted for 'Early Access' Release.
    It seems there may be some confusion. The Steam Audio plugin will only support Win64 for 4.16. The new audio mixer is a separate thing - this question probably belongs in https://forums.unrealengine.com/showthread.php?143974-4-16-New-Audio-Engine-Early-Access-Quick-Start-Guide or its own thread.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by freeman_valve View Post
    It seems there may be some confusion. The Steam Audio plugin will only support Win64 for 4.16. The new audio mixer is a separate thing - this question probably belongs in https://forums.unrealengine.com/showthread.php?143974-4-16-New-Audio-Engine-Early-Access-Quick-Start-Guide or its own thread.
    Thanks yeah there has been some confusion. Great thanks for clarifying, I am working out of office on a project using Win64 for 4.16 and just wanted to play with steam audio and the new audio engine on my iMac. Thanks for your help.

  12. #12
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    I can't get environment audio effects to work. Have done everything in the manual: put geomtry and material on static meshes, added phonon volume, generated probes, added phonon source to the actor with audio source, set reverb source settings to Baked (in project settings too), built everything.

    Spatialization and occlusion works but the environment audio doesn't, what am I doing wrong?

    EDIT: figured it out, it was just too quiet.
    Last edited by AlekseyIlin; 05-17-2017 at 09:02 AM.

  13. #13
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    When trying to package for Win64 with Steam Audio enabled on Win64 I get this error message.

    UATHelper: Packaging (Windows (64-bit)): UnrealBuildTool: Creating library E:\Unreal Projects\xxx\Binaries\Win64\xxx.lib and object E:\Unreal Projects\xxx\Binaries\Win64\xxx.exp
    UATHelper: Packaging (Windows (64-bit)): UnrealBuildTool: UE4-SteamAudio.lib(Module.SteamAudio.cpp.obj) : error LNK2019: unresolved external symbol "unsigned int __cdecl SteamAudio::GetNumTrianglesForStaticMesh(class AStaticMeshActor *)" (?GetNumTrianglesForStaticMesh@SteamAudio@@YAIPEAVAStaticMeshActor@@@Z) referenced in function "private: void __cdecl UPho
    nonGeometryComponent::UpdateStatistics(void)" (?UpdateStatistics@UPhononGeometryComponent@@AEAAXXZ)
    UATHelper: Packaging (Windows (64-bit)): UnrealBuildTool: UE4-SteamAudio.lib(Module.SteamAudio.cpp.obj) : error LNK2019: unresolved external symbol "unsigned int __cdecl SteamAudio::GetNumTrianglesAtRoot(class AActor *)" (?GetNumTrianglesAtRoot@SteamAudio@@YAIPEAVAActor@@@Z) referenced in function "private: void __cdecl UPhononGeometryComponent::UpdateStatis
    tics(void)" (?UpdateStatistics@UPhononGeometryComponent@@AEAAXXZ)
    UATHelper: Packaging (Windows (64-bit)): UnrealBuildTool: E:\Unreal Projects\xxx\Binaries\Win64\xxx.exe : fatal error LNK1120: 2 unresolved externals



    Anybody else experiencing the same problem? Any workaround available?

    I opened a bug report for the issue here:
    https://answers.unrealengine.com/questions/601357/cannot-package-with-steam-audio-plugin-enabled.html

  14. #14
    0
    Quote Originally Posted by xN31 View Post
    When trying to package for Win64 with Steam Audio enabled on Win64 I get this error message.

    UATHelper: Packaging (Windows (64-bit)): UnrealBuildTool: Creating library E:\Unreal Projects\xxx\Binaries\Win64\xxx.lib and object E:\Unreal Projects\xxx\Binaries\Win64\xxx.exp
    UATHelper: Packaging (Windows (64-bit)): UnrealBuildTool: UE4-SteamAudio.lib(Module.SteamAudio.cpp.obj) : error LNK2019: unresolved external symbol "unsigned int __cdecl SteamAudio::GetNumTrianglesForStaticMesh(class AStaticMeshActor *)" (?GetNumTrianglesForStaticMesh@SteamAudio@@YAIPEAVAStaticMeshActor@@@Z) referenced in function "private: void __cdecl UPho
    nonGeometryComponent::UpdateStatistics(void)" (?UpdateStatistics@UPhononGeometryComponent@@AEAAXXZ)
    UATHelper: Packaging (Windows (64-bit)): UnrealBuildTool: UE4-SteamAudio.lib(Module.SteamAudio.cpp.obj) : error LNK2019: unresolved external symbol "unsigned int __cdecl SteamAudio::GetNumTrianglesAtRoot(class AActor *)" (?GetNumTrianglesAtRoot@SteamAudio@@YAIPEAVAActor@@@Z) referenced in function "private: void __cdecl UPhononGeometryComponent::UpdateStatis
    tics(void)" (?UpdateStatistics@UPhononGeometryComponent@@AEAAXXZ)
    UATHelper: Packaging (Windows (64-bit)): UnrealBuildTool: E:\Unreal Projects\xxx\Binaries\Win64\xxx.exe : fatal error LNK1120: 2 unresolved externals



    Anybody else experiencing the same problem? Any workaround available?

    I opened a bug report for the issue here:
    https://answers.unrealengine.com/questions/601357/cannot-package-with-steam-audio-plugin-enabled.html
    Hey xN31,

    I'm aware of the issue and have a fix for it coming out in 4.17. There are a few functions that were incorrectly #ifdef'd to compile only with the editor. The only workaround currently is to compile the engine from GitHub and apply the patch.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by freeman_valve View Post
    Hey xN31,

    I'm aware of the issue and have a fix for it coming out in 4.17. There are a few functions that were incorrectly #ifdef'd to compile only with the editor. The only workaround currently is to compile the engine from GitHub and apply the patch.
    Ok, thanks. Too late for including the fix in 4.16 final? ;-) Where can I find the patch if I want to compile the engine from code? Is there already a pull request?

  16. #16
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    @freeman_valve: When exporting the scene the first time (after applying phonon geometries and materials) a file [level_name].obj gets created in the Contents folder and I get asked "A change to a source content file has been detected. Would you like to import it?"

    Shall I import or ignore it?

  17. #17
    0
    Quote Originally Posted by freeman_valve View Post
    Currently, we do not support transmission (sound passing through geometry) - we offer Partial occlusion, which will smoothly interpolate direct sound down to 0 volume as the source passes out of view.

    We only support static geometry at the moment. We do, however, have the ability to hook into a custom raytracer, so I plan to experiment with using the UE4 raytracer and see if we can get dynamic geometry without having to implement complex data structures in our backend.
    In my tests the volume does not drop to 0 when the source is fully occluded, even if no reverb is configured. Is there something wrong in my setup or am I hearing some sort of sound indirectly reflected by the objects around?
    Last edited by xN31; 05-20-2017 at 08:59 PM.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by xN31 View Post
    @freeman_valve: When exporting the scene the first time (after applying phonon geometries and materials) a file [level_name].obj gets created in the Contents folder and I get asked "A change to a source content file has been detected. Would you like to import it?"

    Shall I import or ignore it?
    You can just ignore it. The obj is useful for verifying scene geometry is what you expect.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by xN31 View Post
    In my tests the volume does not drop to 0 when the source is fully occluded, even if no reverb is configured. Is there something wrong in my setup or am I hearing some sort of sound indirectly reflected by the objects around?
    Hmm - can you post a video with the exact settings? Are you using partial occlusion or raycast?

  20. #20
    0

    Occlusion and indirect sound

    Quote Originally Posted by freeman_valve View Post
    Hmm - can you post a video with the exact settings? Are you using partial occlusion or raycast?
    So, using raycast. Did some more testing:
    - Object A is a blueprint with a static mesh which plays a sound each time the object collides with something. I've tried using "Play sound at Location", "Spawn Sound at Location" and "Spawn Sound Attached", setting in any case the same attenuation (which includes steam occlusions). Occlusions do not seem to work properly (I hear the object hitting even when behind other objects)
    - Object B is a similar blueprint, but with also an audio component attached with a looping sound (same attenuation). Looping sound works fine with occlusions, bump sounds no (e.g. throw the object, stop hearing the looping sound and then hear the bump)

    Any idea why?

    Also, when the looping sound is occluded, it gets completely muted even if I enable indirect sounds (e.g. add a real time reverb). Is this something expected?
    Last edited by xN31; 05-22-2017 at 07:47 AM.

  21. #21
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    Phonon Probe Volumes and trace interactions

    Also, talking about a different issue: Phonon Probe Volumes do not have collision settings as other Volumes and this may be a problem with trace interactions used in the VR template for teleporting. Would it be possible to change the collision preset for this object?
    Last edited by xN31; 05-22-2017 at 07:46 AM.

  22. #22
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    Model normals

    On a different topic: checked out the generated .obj in blender and all or most of the normals seem to be inverted. Is this a problem?
    I'm experiencing a weird behaviour in the generation of the probes, using "Uniform Floor" as placement strategy, could the two issues be linked?

  23. #23
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    Phonon Probe Volumes and Probes placement

    As concerns probes placement, as reported in a previous post I'm experiencing some unexpected behaviour:
    Name:  Capture.PNG
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    In this case probes get placed only in the central part of the volume (above a table in the scene)

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    In this case they get placed outside the volume. Please note that this may be linked to the 45 deg rotation relative to the Z axis of the volume:
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    Last edited by xN31; 05-22-2017 at 09:38 AM.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by xN31 View Post
    As concerns probes placement, as reported in a previous post I'm experiencing some unexpected behaviour:
    Name:  Capture.PNG
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    In this case probes get placed only in the central part of the volume (above a table in the scene)

    Name:  Capture2.PNG
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Size:  28.9 KB
    In this case they get placed outside the volume. Please note that this may be linked to the 45 deg rotation relative to the Z axis of the volume:
    Name:  Capture3.PNG
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Size:  19.7 KB
    At the moment, we only support axis-aligned volumes (no rotation). I figured at some point folks would try to align - will probably disable rotating the volume in the next release.

    I'm not sure why your first situation would be happening. What do the other views look like (front, side), and is all geometry that we're looking at tagged and exported?

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by xN31 View Post
    On a different topic: checked out the generated .obj in blender and all or most of the normals seem to be inverted. Is this a problem?
    I'm experiencing a weird behaviour in the generation of the probes, using "Uniform Floor" as placement strategy, could the two issues be linked?
    We don't put restrictions on which way the normals face, so that should not be a problem.

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by xN31 View Post
    Also, talking about a different issue: Phonon Probe Volumes do not have collision settings as other Volumes and this may be a problem with trace interactions used in the VR template for teleporting. Would it be possible to change the collision preset for this object?
    Can you be more specific? If you actually encounter this problem I'm happy to look into it.

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by freeman_valve View Post
    At the moment, we only support axis-aligned volumes (no rotation). I figured at some point folks would try to align - will probably disable rotating the volume in the next release.

    I'm not sure why your first situation would be happening. What do the other views look like (front, side), and is all geometry that we're looking at tagged and exported?
    Ok, I will try using volumes without rotation. If it can be useful I will PM you th e generated .obj for debugging, not all the geometry is tagged and exported, just floor, walls and the table.

  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by freeman_valve View Post
    Can you be more specific? If you actually encounter this problem I'm happy to look into it.

    Re: Phonon Probe Volumes and trace interactions

    In general, if you use raycasts (https://docs.unrealengine.com/latest/INT/Gameplay/HowTo/UseRaycasts/Blueprints/) to find intersections with the scene's static objects (e.g. using the node LineTraceForObjects) you may want to pass as objects the type "WorldStatic", because this is the default object type for all static objects.

    Since some volumes by default are WorldStatic too (e.g.NavMeshBoundVolume), if you don't change the collision preset for the volume to NoCollision or to Custom + a different Object Type inside this volume the LineTraceForObjects would not work because it would always intersect with the volume. This is for example the case for the "teleportation" raycast used in the VR template.

    The Phonon Probe Volumes seem to be WorldStatic too, and do not allow at the moment to change object type or collision preset (so at the moment the only solution is to change the object type of all the other objects in the scene). Please let me know if you need more specific details, or let me know if I am missing something obvious

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by xN31 View Post
    So, using raycast. Did some more testing:
    - Object A is a blueprint with a static mesh which plays a sound each time the object collides with something. I've tried using "Play sound at Location", "Spawn Sound at Location" and "Spawn Sound Attached", setting in any case the same attenuation (which includes steam occlusions). Occlusions do not seem to work properly (I hear the object hitting even when behind other objects)
    - Object B is a similar blueprint, but with also an audio component attached with a looping sound (same attenuation). Looping sound works fine with occlusions, bump sounds no (e.g. throw the object, stop hearing the looping sound and then hear the bump)

    Any idea why?

    Also, when the looping sound is occluded, it gets completely muted even if I enable indirect sounds (e.g. add a real time reverb). Is this something expected?
    @freeman_valve Any feedback about this?

    Should sounds played with "Play sound at Location", "Spawn Sound at Location" or "Spawn Sound Attached" be affected by occlusion too?

    Does an occluded sound have any indirect contribution or occlusion blocks both direct and indirect components?

  30. #30
    0
    Quote Originally Posted by xN31 View Post
    Re: Phonon Probe Volumes and trace interactions

    In general, if you use raycasts (https://docs.unrealengine.com/latest/INT/Gameplay/HowTo/UseRaycasts/Blueprints/) to find intersections with the scene's static objects (e.g. using the node LineTraceForObjects) you may want to pass as objects the type "WorldStatic", because this is the default object type for all static objects.

    Since some volumes by default are WorldStatic too (e.g.NavMeshBoundVolume), if you don't change the collision preset for the volume to NoCollision or to Custom + a different Object Type inside this volume the LineTraceForObjects would not work because it would always intersect with the volume. This is for example the case for the "teleportation" raycast used in the VR template.

    The Phonon Probe Volumes seem to be WorldStatic too, and do not allow at the moment to change object type or collision preset (so at the moment the only solution is to change the object type of all the other objects in the scene). Please let me know if you need more specific details, or let me know if I am missing something obvious
    Okay - great - I'll take a look at this for 4.17. Thanks!

  31. #31
    0
    Quote Originally Posted by xN31 View Post
    @freeman_valve Any feedback about this?

    Should sounds played with "Play sound at Location", "Spawn Sound at Location" or "Spawn Sound Attached" be affected by occlusion too?

    Does an occluded sound have any indirect contribution or occlusion blocks both direct and indirect components?
    Sounds played dynamically should work correctly with occlusion. I will do testing to see if I can reproduce these errors.

    Occluded sounds have indirect contribution if you're using source-centric reverb, but not if you're using listener-centric reverb.

  32. #32
    0
    Quote Originally Posted by freeman_valve View Post
    At the moment, we only support axis-aligned volumes (no rotation). I figured at some point folks would try to align - will probably disable rotating the volume in the next release.

    I'm not sure why your first situation would be happening. What do the other views look like (front, side), and is all geometry that we're looking at tagged and exported?
    Figured it out. The volumes used "Uniform Floor" placement strategy, but were placed above the floor (I thought they should encompass only the area where I wanted probes). Including the floor fixed the issue.

  33. #33
    0
    Quote Originally Posted by freeman_valve View Post
    Sounds played dynamically should work correctly with occlusion. I will do testing to see if I can reproduce these errors.

    Occluded sounds have indirect contribution if you're using source-centric reverb, but not if you're using listener-centric reverb.
    Ok, I was using listener centric reverb. With source centric reverb both occlusions on sounds played dynamically and indirect contribution for occluded sounds work properly, thanks.

  34. #34
    0
    @freeman_valve

    Is there an extra step to make Steam Audio work on Gear VR?
    All the builds i have tried with Steam Audio activated always result in it crashing.

    To eliminate my current project as the problem i set up a fresh project and configured it for Gear VR, same result.

    The builds did not have Occlusion enabled.

    This is using UE 4.16.0 with the builds running on a Samsung S7 Edge (Android 7.0, Kernel 3.18.14-10422490)

  35. #35
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    Am I missing something, or isn't it a bit laborious to add PhononGeometryComponents to every single non-negligible-sized StaticMeshActor in a level? Any way to automate it?

  36. #36
    0
    Quote Originally Posted by freeman_valve View Post
    Hey xN31,

    I'm aware of the issue and have a fix for it coming out in 4.17. There are a few functions that were incorrectly #ifdef'd to compile only with the editor. The only workaround currently is to compile the engine from GitHub and apply the patch.

    Greetings! Do you have a link to the pull that fixes this issue?
    ______________________________________________
    https://www.facebook.com/madhousesoftware
    Where sanity is a virtue

  37. #37
    0
    Quote Originally Posted by JoeWintergreen View Post
    Am I missing something, or isn't it a bit laborious to add PhononGeometryComponents to every single non-negligible-sized StaticMeshActor in a level? Any way to automate it?
    The fastest way to export is to use the hierarchy: add an empty actor, attach the geometry component there, enable "export children," and attach any other actors you want under it.

  38. #38
    0
    Quote Originally Posted by cybersnik View Post
    @freeman_valve

    Is there an extra step to make Steam Audio work on Gear VR?
    All the builds i have tried with Steam Audio activated always result in it crashing.

    To eliminate my current project as the problem i set up a fresh project and configured it for Gear VR, same result.

    The builds did not have Occlusion enabled.

    This is using UE 4.16.0 with the builds running on a Samsung S7 Edge (Android 7.0, Kernel 3.18.14-10422490)
    4.16 only supports Win64. We are aiming to support Android in 4.17.

  39. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by freeman_valve View Post
    The fastest way to export is to use the hierarchy: add an empty actor, attach the geometry component there, enable "export children," and attach any other actors you want under it.
    This isn't convenient for me so I did a quick blueprint which adds those components to every smactor above a certain size. Seems to work.

  40. #40
    0
    Quote Originally Posted by freeman_valve View Post
    4.16 only supports Win64. We are aiming to support Android in 4.17.
    Are there any early builds with android support available for testing?

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