Playing existing 5.1 file in Unity via FMOD Studio integration

hey folks, i’m working with a dev and they want to play back a 5.1 interleaved file in FMOD Studio in Unity. in terms of making an Event for this, should it be a 2D (non-spatialized) Event? and is there any special consideration in Unity for how the event plays back or is triggered? thanks!

It’s hard to say for sure without knowing the unique requirements of your game - but probably not. Most common methods of spatialization involve redistributing part of the signal from one channel to adjacent channels, which is liable to eliminate some of the benefit of using a 5.1 channel source audio file.

That being said, there are ways to add some spatial properties to an event without muddying its 5.1 channel signal, most of which involve built-in parameters - but without knowing what you want to achieve, it’s impossible for us to make recommendations.

No. The channel format of an event makes no difference to how that event is started and stopped.

hi Joseph - so i’m not sure this answers the question for me really. let’s say i have a single interleaved premixed 5.1 ambience or maybe music soundtrack file. if i set up an Event and play it what’s the best way to ensure the experience will be as close to playing a 5.1 dvd soundtrack as it can be. no panning, but we would need placement identical to what was in the mixed file. i think in this case we don’t need distance or direction just for the sound to play the mix exactly as it would in a DAW with a 5.1 output. that seems like a 2D Event to me.

To clarify what I said earlier: As you have correctly intuited, if you don’t want the sound be affected by spatialization, you should avoid spatializing the event.

More generally (since not all 3D events are spatialized events, but all spatialized events are 3D events), if you don’t want the sound of the event to be affected in any way by its position relative to the listener, then a 2D event (with no spatializing effects or built-in parameters) is appropriate.

This would be a 2D event, with the speaker positions of the 5.1 panner locked in their default positions. A 2D event does not require an emitter/listener pairing, and you won’t waste CPU cycles for spatialization that never changes.