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Out Of Your Head - new virtual surround simulator - Page 7

post #91 of 853

For Mac users, who have a decently fast machine and amount of RAM, I can say a VM can handle OOYH pretty effortlessly even for watching movies. (Though it does take a bit of rigging to get it to work right.) I bought OOYH for stereo music but it really shines with multi-channel sound on a 7.1 virtualization preset. 

 

I just bought the Home Theater preset, and with VLC, it decodes multichannel audio flawlessly. It's outrageously good. The imaging is just spectacular. Again, there are other ways of decoding 5.1 or 7.1 on headphones (e.g., Flux Ircam HEar), but nothing like this. This reproduces actual speakers positioned in a sonically treated room. That was always the trade-off of headphone listening. You got rid of all the bad room acoustics (standing waves and resonant peaks), but you also got rid of the room! This gives you back a room, but not your acoustic nightmare of a living room; a professionally treated space. (This is one of those rare cases where you get to have your cake, sonically reproduce it, and eat it too--whenever you want, just as good, without calories.)

 

For big movies I use the Egyptian Theater preset. When I first heard it, I thought when would I ever use that preset. But, well, movies like "Pacific Rim," because, you know, giant robots. It can't image as precisely as Home Theater because the speakers are so much "further" from you. But, the sense of huge theater space really helps build the psychological scale of the images. Now if only someone could make a video version of this software, you'd never have to go to AMC-Loews again. (If I become anti-social I'm going to blame Darin.)

 

Happy listening everyone.


Edited by edwardsean - 12/20/13 at 11:45am
post #92 of 853
Quote:
Originally Posted by FraGGleR View Post
 

 

If you could get over yourself and installed the demo, you could hear the 100 violins playing in surround sound off of some very nice speakers.

But will it make 100 violins sound like 1,000? 

 

I am over myself, and this software and also that JRiverMC.  It seems to me paid for software comes with more annoyances than the free software. JRiver even throws in some advertising partners and still wants me to pay $59.99 for the privilege of being advertised to.  Nope.


Edited by Schonen - 12/20/13 at 4:23pm
post #93 of 853

I had a chance last night to spend some decent amount of time with OOYH. Alas the one 'gotcha' that I'm still struggling with is clipping when there are explosions or very loud noises, whether they are comprised of lows, mids, highs or a combo. If I set the volume low enough so that I don't get clipping, then I find it really difficult to listen to.

 

Like EdwardSean, I bought it with the standard 7.1 home theater preset and have tried it with JRiver, VLC and even my old standby of ZoomPlayer. All are very configureable, but I can't seem to find a combination of settings that work to allow a decent volume level and not clip/overdrive my headphones when there's a loud scene.

 

FYI - I didn't encounter this when I was demoing the software. Any suggestions?

 

Dale

post #94 of 853
Quote:
Originally Posted by AgentXXL View Post
 

I had a chance last night to spend some decent amount of time with OOYH. Alas the one 'gotcha' that I'm still struggling with is clipping when there are explosions or very loud noises, whether they are comprised of lows, mids, highs or a combo. If I set the volume low enough so that I don't get clipping, then I find it really difficult to listen to.

 

Like EdwardSean, I bought it with the standard 7.1 home theater preset and have tried it with JRiver, VLC and even my old standby of ZoomPlayer. All are very configureable, but I can't seem to find a combination of settings that work to allow a decent volume level and not clip/overdrive my headphones when there's a loud scene.

 

FYI - I didn't encounter this when I was demoing the software. Any suggestions?

 

Dale

Hi Dale,

 

Yes, loud explosions, etc. can result in clipping. I try to start with the levels lower going into my software, and that is why some has mentioned that the level is much lower through Out Of Your Head . Part of it is the nature of the processing I am doing. I am also not doing any kind of compression, etc. to try to preserve the dynamics of the speakers measured. The thing to remember is that Out Of Your Head has to take the audio from all 8 channels and combine them into two channels. During a loud explosion in a movie where a lot of sound can come from all 8 channels at once, the sum of all that sound can cause clipping since it can be 8 times as much sound as one channel in conventional stereo listening. The sound from all 8 speakers is arriving at both ears, not just the sound from the left channel going to the left ear as in stereo listening. Even though we are doing all the processing at 32bits, people want the level to be higher so that lower end of the 32 bits is too quiet or much lower than people are used to have coming out of their media players,DACs, etc.

 

I find the best thing to do is to adjust the input channel levels down on the Out Of Your Head control panel on the preset you are using to avoid clipping. Then adjust the output level of your DAC up higher and/or your headphone amp. I find that once the audio is output from Out Of Your Head , you can adjust the output levels of the DACS or amps up without any clipping problems.

 

I know this is different than you might be used to when Out Of Your Head is not used and the output levels of your DAC and amp may be a lot higher than you normally use, but that may be one way to avoid clipping and yet still have enough volume to hear during the quieter passages.

 

I tend to have to have the DAC or amp levels set pretty high for high impedance headphones.

 

-Darin

post #95 of 853
Quote:
Originally Posted by AgentXXL View Post
 

I had a chance last night to spend some decent amount of time with OOYH. Alas the one 'gotcha' that I'm still struggling with is clipping when there are explosions or very loud noises, whether they are comprised of lows, mids, highs or a combo. If I set the volume low enough so that I don't get clipping, then I find it really difficult to listen to.

 

Dale

Does this happen with music, or just movies? If just movies, you might consider a limiter, or if it's just very occasionally with music you might consider it there too. Also, JRMC has a soft clipping setting, have you tried that?

 

Another option is a compressor, something I wish car stereos came with. I think I've seen free or very inexpensive versions of these. Is the clipping so bad that you hear it, or does it just show on the meter(s)?

 

-Chris


Edited by crisnee - 12/20/13 at 10:54pm
post #96 of 853

I had some time to do further testing. 

 

The egyptian theater room is strange. LB/RB don't work for me. It is just 5.1 not 7.1.

 

With normal levels clipping occurs during playback. So I have to lower the volume of the input to OOYH. I think if someone pays for software this shouldn't happen.

 

 

For me only 3 rooms sound acceptable. The rest is terrible for my ears. With music I don't like any room so far.  At the moment I don't see a advantage of OOYH compared to the  Dolby Headphone option of my Asus Xonar U1, which was 5 times cheaper than the OOYH software.

post #97 of 853
Quote:
Originally Posted by crisnee View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by AgentXXL View Post
 

I had a chance last night to spend some decent amount of time with OOYH. Alas the one 'gotcha' that I'm still struggling with is clipping when there are explosions or very loud noises, whether they are comprised of lows, mids, highs or a combo. If I set the volume low enough so that I don't get clipping, then I find it really difficult to listen to.

 

Dale

Does this happen with music, or just movies? If just movies, you might consider a limiter, or if it's just very occasionally with music you might consider it there too. Also, JRMC has a soft clipping setting, have you tried that?

 

Another option is a compressor, something I wish car stereos came with. I think I've seen free or very inexpensive versions of these. Is the clipping so bad that you hear it, or does it just show on the meter(s)?

 

-Chris

 

It happens with both music and movies. I haven't tried the soft-clipping setting in JRMC - still not sure if I'm going to purchase it. JRMC seems decent but both VLC and ZoomPlayer are also both very configurable. I've been an owner/user of Zoomplayer for over 10 years and it still holds up very nicely in today's marketplace. That said, now that I'm primarily a Mac user, I tend to use VLC and Plex the most. I'm sure I can do something based on the information both you and Darin provided. I'll give it another go later today.

 

Dale

post #98 of 853
Quote:
Originally Posted by musicreo View Post
 

I had some time to do further testing. 

 

The egyptian theater room is strange. LB/RB don't work for me. It is just 5.1 not 7.1.

 

With normal levels clipping occurs during playback. So I have to lower the volume of the input to OOYH. I think if someone pays for software this shouldn't happen.

 

 

For me only 3 rooms sound acceptable. The rest is terrible for my ears. With music I don't like any room so far.  At the moment I don't see a advantage of OOYH compared to the  Dolby Headphone option of my Asus Xonar U1, which was 5 times cheaper than the OOYH software.

 

The only rooms which I find acceptable with music are the 2 channel setups. And even those take a bit of fiddling to get used to. The specific advantage I see of OOYH is being able to replicate (to a degree) the environments that the various presets represent. It's not a simulated environment - it's based on actual measurements, just like the Smyth Realizer. Still, you're trying to emulate environments that are using speakers, and as good as some headphones are, they just can't equal a full speaker setup. But they are very useful when you have to limit the impact to those around you - my neighbors and their intolerance of loud noise is what made me move towards a really good set of headphones. I'm still working on both the DAC and amplifier I use to feed them, and now adding options like OOYH to improve my enjoyment of the system.

 

Dolby Headphone has it's place, but it's not perfect either. If you want something that actually does quite well for creating a simple surround environment, try the free Razer surround software mentioned earlier in the thread. Entirely simulated and not very high quality, but enjoyable in certain situations. To me, OOYH is the closest I'll come to owning a Smyth Realizer - even given the small quirks I'm working with, I don't regret the purchase.

 

Dale

post #99 of 853
Quote:

Originally Posted by AgentXXL View Post

 

it's based on actual measurements, just like the Smyth Realizer

 

I'm pretty sure it IS based on Realiser measurements. ;) I doubt Darin came up with a microphone rig himself. You just need to record the impulse response from the Realiser PRIRs, just like has been already done in the PRIR threads and there's a guide on how to use them on PC with VST-plugins. Darin just packaged things up nicely to a single software. Feel free to correct me if I'm wrong..

 

Darin, I'm curious is if you are going to make your own rig, since you said you are maybe planning to create hi-res stuff and obviously Realiser is limited to 48khz..


Edited by hekeli - 12/22/13 at 12:18am
post #100 of 853

By the way, are there any plans to make a good old OOYH VST plugin? I think I'd prefer that over a virtual soundcard (so that I'd only use it with say, JRiver MC, but not have to worry about toggling it off when playing games or watching vids online and such).

Though I guess if you made a low latency version I would not be asking for that :P But I do also prefer to use ASIO to bypass Windows audio when using JRiver MC for both music and films so as it is I have to switch back to Directsound and I'm not a fan of that (I mean my audio goes through windows mixer and THEN my soundcard mixer since I have an Asus Xonar card... tons of unnecessary processing and OOYH adds even more on top of that so meh)

 

I've been playing around with the Razer surround thingie and it's a virtual soundcard like OOYH but the latency is really low which is great for games (and films). The quality isn't all that amazing though (guess they value speed over quality) and there's not enough settings that you can adjust for my taste. Not many games have great sound quality to start with but I find that some atmospheric single player games benefit a lot even from just simple virtual surround like Razer. OOYH could probably make things even better :)

post #101 of 853
Quote:
Originally Posted by kalston View Post
 

By the way, are there any plans to make a good old OOYH VST plugin? I think I'd prefer that over a virtual soundcard (so that I'd only use it with say, JRiver MC, but not have to worry about toggling it off when playing games or watching vids online and such).

Though I guess if you made a low latency version I would not be asking for that :P But I do also prefer to use ASIO to bypass Windows audio when using JRiver MC for both music and films so as it is I have to switch back to Directsound and I'm not a fan of that (I mean my audio goes through windows mixer and THEN my soundcard mixer since I have an Asus Xonar card... tons of unnecessary processing and OOYH adds even more on top of that so meh)

 

I've been playing around with the Razer surround thingie and it's a virtual soundcard like OOYH but the latency is really low which is great for games (and films). The quality isn't all that amazing though (guess they value speed over quality) and there's not enough settings that you can adjust for my taste. Not many games have great sound quality to start with but I find that some atmospheric single player games benefit a lot even from just simple virtual surround like Razer. OOYH could probably make things even better :)

Right now, there are no plans to make a VST plug-in. I have thought about it, but right now my focus is on getting all the various platform versions done. I really wanted Out Of Your Head to be easy to use for the average person, not necessarily an audiophile or audio engineer, etc. I understand about having to switch it on and off if you are using the default Direct Sound device for all your media and games. I am not a gamer, but I assume the games can be configured to use a specific audio device instead of the "default" one. This way each game could be set to "bypass" Out Of Your Head even if it's running.

 

You can configure say JRiver to use WASAPI and Out Of Your Head instead of Direct Sound. You can see how to do it in this post: http://www.head-fi.org/t/689299/out-of-your-head-new-virtual-surround-simulator/15#post_9961640

 

You might be able to do a similar thing in other software.

 

I am definitely working on a low latency, lower quality version for gamers. I still think I can get much more realistic virtual surround than the other software gaming solutions like Razor, Dolby Headphone, etc.

post #102 of 853

Understood. Yea WASAPI could work but I've had issues with it (and it doesn't bypass the Xonar drivers mixer so it doesn't change the sampling rate etc). 

 

And the thing is most games can't be configured much and just use the "primary audio device". Some can be configured of course but many can't. So it's a real pain and that's why OOYH or the Razer thing are a step in the right direction. 

 

I will be looking forward to your gamer version then :)

post #103 of 853
Quote:
 I am definitely working on a low latency, lower quality version for gamers. I still think I can get much more realistic virtual surround than the other software gaming solutions like Razor, Dolby Headphone, etc.

 

What people will want from a gaming version is positional accuracy above all else. Bear that in mind. :) Dolby Headphone is OK at this but fails noticeably in some respects e.g. detecting when someone is above or below you.

 

By the way, what is the latency of the current product?


Edited by John_M - 1/7/14 at 3:04pm
post #104 of 853
Quote:
Originally Posted by John_M View Post
 

 

What people will want from a gaming version is positional accuracy above all else. Bear that in mind. :) Dolby Headphone is OK at this but fails noticeably in some respects e.g. detecting when someone is above or below you.

 

By the way, what is the latency of the current product?

http://www.head-fi.org/t/689299/out-of-your-head-new-virtual-surround-simulator/45#post_10004089

 

So 400ms. And as for the positional accuracy, in my experience it depends a lot on the game's sound engine and sound quality. Many games compress the sound way too harshly and use a bad audio engine (or even lack true surround support in some cases), so even on a proper surround setup you often won't get great accuracy. You can't hear above and below... because the game's audio is lackluster. Some games do have great sound of course but positioning accuracy with virtual surround has never really been my biggest gripe tbh. (and yes I'm a big FPS gamer)


Edited by kalston - 1/8/14 at 2:32am
post #105 of 853
The positional accuracy does depend on the game, I agree, but it's also affected by how well the surround algorithm works and not all surround sound algorithms are equal. CMSS:3D lets you hear above and below much better than Dolby Headphone does using the same game source data.

For a gaming algorithm he needs lower latency and, if he has to sacrifice something to get it, sacrifice sound quality rather than positional accuracy. I think you'll agree that you don't want to get killed (or miss a potential kill) through mis-hearing where someone is, just to get nice sound.

400ms sounds a bit high for films as well, although clearly you have more latitude to get away with latency than you do in games.

Darin, I'm interesting in buying this but I can see from the previous posts that there are some issues with the software e.g. clipping on explosions. Will you be tweaking/ optimising it some more and, if so, would I get any updates for free? And if a gaming version is released would I need to pay for that separately?
Edited by John_M - 1/8/14 at 4:49am
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