Native Unreal vs Middleware

I need to gather information and advice regarding Unreal’s native audio capabilities versus the use of middleware (FMod / Wwise). One key factor for my considerations is implementing vehicle sounds.

Now, I am reasonably inexperienced in this area, so my own education of how best to implement such sounds will probably be a huge determining factor too. :slight_smile: For example, so far, using native Unreal, I have implemented vehicle sounds using short sample loops of engine sounds and then modifying their pitch using parameters like wheel speed or velocity of the vehicle.

This has given reasonable results, but I am unsure if:

a) This is the best way to do it. b) I would get better results with it using middleware instead

Now, I am aware that Unreal’s audio engine has been completely rewritten and will be available for testing in 4.16, so this is another thing I need to factor into my decision. There are features such as:

  • Timestretching samples (might be a better implementation for engine sounds?)
  • Real-time modulation of a cutoff filter (doesn’t seem possible natively in 4.15)
  • Peak meters and some kind of visual mixer (like Unity has)

…which are things I found myself desiring when developing natively in Unreal.

In summary then, I just need some help deciding whether to design vehicle sounds natively in Unreal, or if I should definitely pursue middleware, and which middleware! :slight_smile:

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.


This is the best way to do it within Unreal, and you will not be able to do much more before a long time.
The audio revamp will take a long time and although it will make the integration of effects such as timestretcher etc. easier in the future, it’s safer not to count on Epic for it - after all, they’re developing an engine first.

However there are better options: timestretching/granular synthesis-based effects are probably the best available technology now, implemented in AudioGaming AudioMotors or Crankcase Rev for instance.
Obviously realtime filters are available in both sound engines you mentioned, as well as meters (some are better than others).

All that being said you can already have nice results by modifying the pitch, as long as your base recordings are good and you spend some time tweaking your pitch system; for meters you can also use the Orban meter. Not much yet for real-time filters although coding such a plugin should become really easy now.
Considering your main objective for now is to learn I would first exhaust all possibilities offered by UE4; this will help you later, if you move on to audio midlewares, to better appreciate and master those.