360 videos have only been on Facebook for a year, they’ve been adopted by thousands of publishers, and offers truly immersive visual experiences to audiences worldwide. Now, the company is announcing a new feature that will make 360 videos even more captivating and immersive – Audio 360.
Audio 360 – spacial surround sound for 360 videos – offers viewers “the ability to experience spatial surround sound as if they were really standing in the middle of the video.” It is currently available on News Feed on iOS, Android, Samsung Gear VR (powered by Oculus), and will be available on Chrome on Desktop soon.
Audio 360 includes a “suite of tools including the Spatial Workstation which enable creators to publish 360 videos with spatial audio on News Feed.” Essentially 3D sound for 360 videos, and delivered over headphones, Facebook says it is meant to
[quote]replicate how humans hear sound in real life. As audiences move around in a 360 video, the sound moves around with them, helping to place them in the context of the scene.[/quote]
To enable spatial audio within a 360 video, creators will either need to record their audio with an ambisonic microphone — a microphone that records directional audio — or use their monoscopic and stereoscopic audio with Facebook‘s new 360 Spatial Workstation tools. Facebook explains that these tools
[quote]enable creators to sync their audio with what viewers see in a 360 video’s field of view.[/quote]
Having edited their audio, creators use the special Encoder in Spatial Workstation to mix their audio tracks with their video. There is a full step-by-step guide for this process. You can find it here. To get started with Audio 360, you can download all the tools here.
Viewers can then enjoy the 360 video with spatial audio on any stereo headphones right on their News Feeds. Have a look at some examples of this new feature in action.
Earlier this summer, President Obama and his family visited Yosemite National Park. Today, explore the first-ever virtual reality experience with the First Family in celebration of the National Park Centennial. Available on the Oculus Store for Gear VR with Rift coming soon. (Created by National Geographic, Oculus, and Felix and Paul studios)
Posted by National Geographic on Thursday, August 25, 2016
Put yourself in the middle of a modern mariachi show by Latin Grammy award-winners Mariachi Flor de Toloache. With the new spatial audio done in the Facebook 360 Spatial Workstation, the sound follows you around the room with real-time spatial audio. Listen over a normal pair of headphones on Facebook 360 for Android and GearVR today – with iOS and Chrome on Desktop to follow in a couple of weeks.
Posted by Jaunt XR on Tuesday, September 20, 2016
Image credit: Facebook.com