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Thread: OpenAL problems with new PC and Realtek

  1. #1
    Member
    Registered: Oct 2013

    OpenAL problems with new PC and Realtek

    My previous PC had a Soundblaster Gamer card and I had no problems with it and my stereo speakers in OpenAL mode.

    New PC has a Realtek chip and I am having problems with it.

    If the hardware mode is set to OpenAL then some sounds are missing, such as the scuttling sounds spiders make as they move.

    If hardware mode is set to ON then the spider scuttle again but the game seems to be running in a forced mono mode with all sounds coming from the centre.

    If HW mode is set to OFF then I get stereo sound and haven't noticed any missing sounds, but then I miss out on EAX and this pseudo surround effect where I could often tell if the sound is meant to be coming from behind me.

    So any known ways to get OpenAL in Thief running correctly with no missing sounds, on a Realtek chip?

  2. #2
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2009
    Location: thiefgold.com

  3. #3
    Member
    Registered: Oct 2013
    Thanks but I actually think the problems were due to sound equaliser settings after all. Could hear the spiders again if adjusted one of the frequencies. Thanks anyway though.

    But to anyone else who has similar issues of missing or too quiet sounds and who uses a custome equaliser setting for their sound, try experimenting with adjusting that.

  4. #4
    Member
    Registered: Oct 2013
    Of course that doesn't explain the forced mono of HW mode, but hey, as long as OpernAL works.

  5. #5
    Member
    Registered: Dec 2006
    Location: Berghem Haven
    With a Realtek chip remember to set ALWAYS the Windows Audio Mixer to 5.1 or 7.1 and then check the physical speakers you actually have (to achieve the automatic mixdown to stereo / 2.1 / etc.).
    This little trick solves a myriad of issues.

  6. #6
    Member
    Registered: Dec 2006
    Location: Berghem Haven
    And remember, you can always configure the OpenAL driver used (I use soft_oal 1.191. -> https://github.com/kcat/openal-soft/releases ) in Thief New Dark cam_ext:

    ; -------------
    ; sound options
    ; -------------

    ; if EAX is enabled and sounds sound too direct when under water (the same or almost the same as above)
    ; then try enabling one of these (or experiment with custom values)
    ;submerged_sound_occlusion 0.1 0.5 0.88
    ;submerged_sound_occlusion 0.3 0.1

    ; force the use of UnderWater reverb/EAX environment when the player is under water
    ;force_underwater_reverb

    ; when using the OpenAL sound driver the default AL device may sometimes cause problems, in particular for
    ; on-board sound controllers. In those instances you can try an alternative AL device. Which other AL devices
    ; are available can be seen in the log file (when AL is enabled). It seems that usually the "Generic Software"
    ; device is available, which is a good one to try as an alternative.
    snd_oal_device OpenAL Soft

    ; set a non-default speaker configuration (not all devices support this, especially with OpenAL only the
    ; "OpenAL Soft" (soft_oal) device driver currently supports it.

    ; (0 = default, 2 = stereo, 4 = quadraphonic, 5 = surround, 6 = '5.1', 7 = '6.1', 8 = '7.1', 9 = '5.1' side,
    ; 10 = '7.1' center l+r)
    ;snd_speaker_config 6

  7. #7
    Member
    Registered: Dec 2002
    Location: Saint-Petersburg, Russia
    Or use this:

    ftp://ftp.valet2.com/alchemy/ALUNI_P..._LB_1_00_8.exe

    Add the game's path in ALChemy application afterwards, and choose "hardware sound" and "eax" in game's options. It will bring back some kind of positional sound with eax (it's not pseudosurround - it adds different amount of reverb to various places, hardcoded into the maps). Also it's compatible with 5.1 - it just uses whatever speaker settings is set in windows.

  8. #8
    Member
    Registered: Dec 2006
    Location: Berghem Haven
    OpenAL Soft too uses the Windows Speakers Settings (if not forced otherwise/elsehere)

    If EAX is emulated/translated via EFX (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Enviro...dio_Extensions), OpenAL Soft is the best solution.....without passing through a wrapper like ALchemy.
    OpenAL Soft provides HRTF too for Stereo Headphones/Speakers configuration

    In general about positional audio the one and only important thing using the classic stereo config, is:
    *for old games using DS3D retrieve its capabilities through indirectsound (https://www.indirectsound.com/) or openal soft (https://github.com/kcat/openal-soft/releases), force hardware channels in the game configuration and set in Windows the downmix 5.1/7.1 -> 2 (unchecking the missing speakers)
    *for new games using XAudio directly set in Windows the downmix 5.1/7.1 -> 2 (unchecking the missing speakers)

    And remember to force FULL RANGE speakers when NOT using an LFE channel-dedicated subwoofer.
    Last edited by lowenz; 16th Feb 2019 at 06:22.

  9. #9
    New Member
    Registered: Mar 2020

    Win10/Realtek/OpenAL - T1/T2

    I would like to see if I can get T1/2 working correct with the onboard audio (Realtek ALC1220) and OpenAL soft but Ive run into a brick wall.

    I have installed OpenAL from openal.org, I have manually copied the X86/x64 versions of the soft_oal.dll to System32/SysWOW64. And both games are patched to the latest versions of NuDark.

    - T1 will only use the the front and center speakers despite have the correct 5.1 setting in cam_ext.cfg.
    - T2 uses all 5 speakers, but the rear speaker volume levels are way louder then the front/center. When main-menu speaker test I only hear sounds from the rear L/R speakers and in game everything is way too louad from the rear speakers compared to the front...

    Both games have the following setting in cam_ext.cfg


    HTML Code:
    ; -------------
    ; sound options
    ; -------------
    
    ; if EAX is enabled and sounds sound too direct when under water (the same or almost the same as above)
    ; then try enabling one of these (or experiment with custom values)
    ;submerged_sound_occlusion 0.1 0.5 0.88
    ;submerged_sound_occlusion 0.3 0.1
    
    ; force the use of UnderWater reverb/EAX environment when the player is under water
    ;force_underwater_reverb
    
    ; when using the OpenAL sound driver the default AL device may sometimes cause problems, in particular for
    ; on-board sound controllers. In those instances you can try an alternative AL device. Which other AL devices
    ; are available can be seen in the log file (when AL is enabled). It seems that usually the "Generic Software"
    ; device is available, which is a good one to try as an alternative.
    snd_oal_device OpenAL Soft
    
    ; set a non-default speaker configuration (not all devices support this, especially with OpenAL only the
    ; "OpenAL Soft" (soft_oal) device driver currently supports it.
    ; (0 = default, 2 = stereo, 4 = quadraphonic, 5 = surround, 6 = '5.1', 7 = '6.1', 8 = '7.1', 9 = '5.1' side,
    ; 10 = '7.1' center l+r)
    snd_speaker_config 6
    1. regarding the line "Which other AL devices are available can be seen in the log file (when AL is enabled)" - what log file..?
    2. I dont care about Eax (as that never worked correctly on my old Xfi card in this game, was always too loud), I just want surround 5.1 to work correctly and have the right volume levels for each speaker - so what am I missing here..? as I would prefer not to have to go back to my soundblaster-Z as it has an issue where I randomly get a bass-pop when shutting down or starting up the PC.

  10. #10
    Member
    Registered: Dec 2002
    Location: Saint-Petersburg, Russia
    Just install ALchemy Universal from here: ftp://ftp.valet2.com/alchemy/ALUNI_P..._LB_1_00_8.exe

    Run it, select the game folder. It will inject dsound files. Then the game will let you enable hardware acceleration for audio system. And it will (should) work flawlessly, with positional sound (5.1 in your case). You may also try to play with eax, in my case it worked like a charm! Or just try it. I've tested different eax implementations with different soundcards and different drivers, and I got different result each time.

  11. #11
    New Member
    Registered: Mar 2020

    ALU - sorta works

    Quote Originally Posted by Valet2 View Post
    Just install ALchemy Universal from here: ftp://ftp.valet2.com/alchemy/ALUNI_P..._LB_1_00_8.exe
    I was about to ask if this was only for Creative cards, but I see that this ALU was originally created by Daniel_k to work on older creative cards and see its been updated for non-creative cards -

    - https://community.pcgamingwiki.com/f...emy-universal/

    So results after installing ALU:

    T1 -
    • H/W acceleration (OFF) - speaker test, sound coming out front L/R speakers as normal.
    • H/W acceleration (ON) - speaker test, sound coming out of rear L/R speakers more than front - why?
    • H/W acceleration OpenAL (ON) - speaker test, sound coming out front L/R speakers as normal.
    • H/W acceleration OpenAL (ON) Eax (ON) - speaker test, sound coming out front L/R speakers as normal.


    Standing in front of Bafford listening to the guards, nothing coming out of the rear speakers on all settings.

    T2 -
    • H/W acceleration (OFF) - speaker test, sound coming out front L/R speakers as normal.
    • H/W acceleration (ON) - speaker test, sound coming out of rear L/R speakers more than front.
    • H/W acceleration OpenAL (ON) - speaker test, sound coming out of rear L/R speakers more than front.
    • H/W acceleration OpenAL (ON) Eax (ON) - speaker test, sound coming out of rear L/R speakers more than front.


    Standing in front of Basso, only get surround on rear speakers with H/W acceleration enabled.

    Is the main menu speaker test now pointless..? or is it a compatibility bug with Realtek audio chipsets...?

  12. #12
    New Member
    Registered: Mar 2020
    So I gave up and moved back to my old SoundBlasterX card, and am have the same issue/s with OpenAL enabled.

    T1 -

    H/W acceleration OpenAL (ON) - speaker test, sound coming out front L/R speakers as normal.
    H/W acceleration OpenAL (ON) Eax (ON) - speaker test, sound coming out front L/R speakers as normal.

    T2 -

    H/W acceleration OpenAL (ON) - speaker test, sound coming out of rear L/R speakers more than front.
    H/W acceleration OpenAL (ON) Eax (ON) - speaker test, sound coming out of rear L/R speakers more than front.

    If I have to boil it down to one issue that is annoying me if the player footsteps, they sound like they are coming from almost behind me. Is there are anyway to tweak OpenAL so said footsteps sounds like they coming from under-just infront of me..?

  13. #13
    Member
    Registered: Dec 2006
    Location: Berghem Haven
    Disable the HRTF if you're using a multichannel setup

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