logo
Main

Forums

Downloads

Unreal-Netiquette

Donate for Oldunreal:
Donate

borderline

Links to our wiki:
Wiki

Walkthrough

Links

Tutorials

Unreal Reference

Usermaps

borderline

Contact us:
Submit News
Page Index Toggle Pages: [1] 2  Send TopicPrint
Hot Topic (More than 10 Replies) OpenAL (Creative) issues (Read 18850 times)
Hyper
Board Moderator
Betatester
*****
Offline


It's Unreal.

Posts: 3001
Joined: Oct 11th, 2002
OpenAL (Creative) issues
May 18th, 2014 at 8:30pm
Print Post  
It may be related to my sound card because I recently changed it but when I'm using OpenAL in Unreal (Via Creative's OpenAL instead of the new OpenALSoft) I get disappearing sound effects. Especially when there are a lot of sound effects at the same time. It does not occur with OpenALSoft of the latest 227j but because I have an advanced hardware accelerated 3D sound card I like to use that. It does not help to change the number of sound channels (I tried 32, 64 and 128.)

It happens on all Unreal OpenAL versions, like the old OpenAL for unreal Gold, 227i, 227j (beta test)

I can't remember having this before with my older generation X-Fi XtremeMusic PCI.

My new sound card is:
Sound Blaster X-Fi Titanium Fatal1ty Professional Series (PCI-Express)
Driver: http://support.creative.com/downloads/download.aspx?nDownloadId=13078 (latest)

OS: Windows 7
System specs: http://tweakers.net/gallery/sys/515630

Code
Select All
File Name : XFTI_PCDRV_L11_2_40_0008.exe


This download is a driver providing Microsoft® Windows® support for Creative Sound Blaster® X-Fi™ Titanium series of audio devices. This software includes support for Windows 8.1 (32-bit and 64-bit). For more details, read the rest of this web release note.

This download contains the driver and following application(s):

    Creative Audio Control Panel

This download supports the following audio devices only:

    Sound Blaster X-Fi Titanium Fatal1ty® Champion Series
    Sound Blaster X-Fi Titanium Fatal1ty Professional Series
    Sound Blaster X-Fi Titanium Professional Audio
    Sound Blaster X-Fi Titanium

Added Features or Enhancements:

    Multiple fixes that improve the driver's overall stability and performance.

Requirements:

    Microsoft Windows 8.1 32-bit or 64-bit, Windows 8 64-bit or 32-bit, Windows 7 64-bit or 32-bit, Windows Vista 64-bit with Service Pack 1 (SP1), Windows Vista 32-bit with SP1, Windows XP Professional x64 Edition, Windows XP Service Pack 3 (SP3), Windows XP Media Center Edition (MCE) 2005 or Windows XP MCE 2004
    Sound Blaster X-Fi Titanium series audio devices listed above

Notes:

    To install this driver
        Download the XFTI_PCDRV_L11_2_40_0008.exe file onto your local hard disk.
        Double-click the downloaded file.
        Follow the instructions on the screen.
 



Update: It has all the appearances that I solved this issue by reverting to the previous driver for my sound card.
« Last Edit: Jun 2nd, 2014 at 12:55am by Hyper »  
Back to top
WWW  
IP Logged
 
Smirftsch
Forum Administrator
*****
Offline



Posts: 7936
Location: at home
Joined: Apr 30th, 1998
Gender: Male
Re: OpenAL (Creative) issues
Reply #1 - May 19th, 2014 at 5:29am
Print Post  
That for more or less applies what I said in the UT topic:

Quote:
As pointed out above already, it's really not sure if there are any (performance) advantages by using Creatives version, so far it seems that there are indeed only more problems, especially when it comes to non Creative cards and Creatives version hasn't been updated for years also. Further features which could be offered by their version are not free and we can't benefit from these here.

That being said, you can try using it your version of OpenAL32.dll which should be shipped with the driver of your creative card, by simply deleting OpenAL32.dll from this version (and inside UnrealTournament/System folder if existing), or if this is not working by replacing it inside the System folder with the OpenAL32.dll which can be found in your Windows folder.
If working the hardware accelerated devices should show up in advanced option an can be selected.

OpenALSoft which is used in latest 227j itself initializes DSound or WinMM, which both should support hardware acceleration as well, but I haven't found much details about how soundcards handle it. Either way I can only repeat that I didn't find a measurable quantity in performance comparing these 2 so far (seen for Unreal that is). I also had the impression in the last time that most? other games which use "OpenAL" usually taking OpenALSoft as well, while not specifically mentioning it if not really checking the docs.

If you tried this already or if you have still the problems then we are pretty much out of options but maybe there is a way to find out what really happens and if there even is a (maybe only theoretical) disadvantage of some kind by using OpenALSoft.

Feedback welcome Smiley
  

Sometimes you have to lose a fight to win the war.
Back to top
WWWICQ  
IP Logged
 
Hyper
Board Moderator
Betatester
*****
Offline


It's Unreal.

Posts: 3001
Joined: Oct 11th, 2002
Re: OpenAL (Creative) issues
Reply #2 - May 19th, 2014 at 7:35am
Print Post  
Yes, I already tried deleting your supplied OpenAL32.dll from the Unreal\System directory. Otherwise it will not even try to use the "official" Creative supplied one from my Windows folder.

The Creative driver supports all my fancy sound card features like EAX1-5 and X-Ram. OAL Soft only supports EAX1 and EAX2. At least that is what the OpenAL Caps Viewer tells me
http://wayback.archive.org/web/20130726192938/http://connect.creativelabs.com/op...
  
Back to top
WWW  
IP Logged
 
Smirftsch
Forum Administrator
*****
Offline



Posts: 7936
Location: at home
Joined: Apr 30th, 1998
Gender: Male
Re: OpenAL (Creative) issues
Reply #3 - May 19th, 2014 at 3:05pm
Print Post  
that's certainly true, but doesn't change a thing either way. Those "higher" EAX (all > 2 iirc) have never been freely available in the SDK and therefor I never could use them anyway (same for X-Ram). Also my translation of all effects into EFX made it possible the first time to have such effects in Linux as well.
Besides, I think it shows already a lot that the developer page is only existing yet in wayback machine...
  

Sometimes you have to lose a fight to win the war.
Back to top
WWWICQ  
IP Logged
 
Dr.Flay™
Senior Member
****
Online


ChaosUT-333networks

Posts: 374
Location: Kernow, UK
Joined: Dec 9th, 2012
Gender: Male
Re: OpenAL (Creative) issues
Reply #4 - May 29th, 2014 at 5:25am
Print Post  
You probably need Alchemy to fix it.
http://www.guru3d.com/files_tags/alchemy.html

Or just stick with Unreal using the new 1 from it's own folder.
Even if you can access higher EAX versions, Unreal won't be using them anyway so you can't gain anything.
Either library should be calling the same HW functions on your card.

Your chip and OS combo is in the situation as http://www.oldunreal.com/cgi-bin/yabb2/YaBB.pl?num=1397216546
  
Back to top
IP Logged
 
Hyper
Board Moderator
Betatester
*****
Offline


It's Unreal.

Posts: 3001
Joined: Oct 11th, 2002
Re: OpenAL (Creative) issues
Reply #5 - May 29th, 2014 at 6:56pm
Print Post  
ALChemy won't fix OpenAL because ALChemy translates DirectSound3D (DS3D) calls to OpenAL. ALChemy can be used with Unreal to allow Galaxy to use DS3D on Vista and higher.

For now I use Galaxy with DS3D and Alchemy, which is currently the only working way to access my sound hardware without issues. The good thing is that Unreal 227 has so many options to choose from. Both for graphics and sound.
« Last Edit: May 29th, 2014 at 9:55pm by Hyper »  
Back to top
WWW  
IP Logged
 
Smirftsch
Forum Administrator
*****
Offline



Posts: 7936
Location: at home
Joined: Apr 30th, 1998
Gender: Male
Re: OpenAL (Creative) issues
Reply #6 - May 30th, 2014 at 6:18am
Print Post  
Its still strange it won't find your creative OpenAL. It really SHOULD do that. All what I could do now would be trying to get into creative developer section and see if they maybe changed their policy about their newer stuff in OpenAL and their registration (fee).

Edit: I just found out that even creatives developer page is entirely down now and I can't find any further information about continued development or support for OpenAL in newer hardware. No idea what happens there, but I am getting the slight impression that this company isn't as healthy anymore as it was. Anyway, sent a request to their support about this, lets see what they answer.
  

Sometimes you have to lose a fight to win the war.
Back to top
WWWICQ  
IP Logged
 
Hyper
Board Moderator
Betatester
*****
Offline


It's Unreal.

Posts: 3001
Joined: Oct 11th, 2002
Re: OpenAL (Creative) issues
Reply #7 - May 30th, 2014 at 11:45pm
Print Post  
Creative completely ditched hardware 3D sound acceleration on their newest sound cards. (Reckon3D and Z series.) so it does not really surprise me that they don't offer much support for the 3D acceleration API's anymore.

The X-Fi series was the last card with all the fancy features, nowadays they only focus on sound quality and component quality and do all the features in software.

Still, I cannot rule out that it is a problem at my side since it begun when I installed a newer PCI-e series of the X-Fi card instead of my older, first generation PCI X-Fi card.
  
Back to top
WWW  
IP Logged
 
Smirftsch
Forum Administrator
*****
Offline



Posts: 7936
Location: at home
Joined: Apr 30th, 1998
Gender: Male
Re: OpenAL (Creative) issues
Reply #8 - May 31st, 2014 at 5:54am
Print Post  
nevertheless got some feedback in between from the OpenAL mailing lists:

Quote:
I don't have any comparisons, but as a quick test I did, the current git head of OpenAL Soft is able to process 512/1024 sample updates from a couple dozen sources, and one reverb effect, in about 0.5 ~ 1ms (64-bit Linux, AMD Athlon64 X2 4200+ which is a fairly old dual-core CPU). This is with each of those sources having their properties updated 30+ times a second, using cubic resampling (the default is linear, which is faster). It'd be a bit worse with HRTF enabled, but more than good enough for general use.

The biggest benefit you'll have with a hardware OpenAL driver is audio quality. Hardware can employ better techniques for resampling, filters, and effects since it won't bog down the CPU at all. It would also potentially have the benefit of more types of filters and effects, although OpenAL Soft is slowly but surely adding more of them (high-pass and band-pass filters were implemented very recently).


So there is some possible reason to prefer hardware, but I doubt this can be noticed within the range these things are used in Unreal- I personally at least couldn't tell the difference by hearing it only.

Judging from these values the need for hardware acceleration in soundcards becomes pretty much negligible and also speaks for the idea that they dropped this step completely.
Its a bit sad, but unlike graphics cards in which an acceleration is essential and additional memory makes sense, there is little gain from these things from what I read in some benchmark tests about it- but maybe it was just not used properly/extensively enough...?
It was an interesting step they followed and certainly a reason to even buy such high priced card. If now dropping it like you say why still buying soundcards from them? I mean every low cost mainboard is already having at least some 5.1 Realtek chip on it, nothing exciting but definitely functional.
Why they didn't integrate higher EAX functions and XRam functionality into OpenAL, I don't know. I think that was and is very counterproductive for them. The same for dropping OpenAL itself, I mean at least they support OpenALSoft to some degree, but...well, you know. Yet another reason not to buy them anymore in my eyes. I think they should have supported it fully instead of trashing it. So the only real remaining advantage is maybe EAX up to 5.0, but I don't know to which extend modern games make use of it.

As a side note, I still get better FPS with OpenALSoft compared to Galaxy. Its only 1 FPS in my benchmark map, but its there Tongue
« Last Edit: May 31st, 2014 at 8:26am by Smirftsch »  

Sometimes you have to lose a fight to win the war.
Back to top
WWWICQ  
IP Logged
 
Hyper
Board Moderator
Betatester
*****
Offline


It's Unreal.

Posts: 3001
Joined: Oct 11th, 2002
Re: OpenAL (Creative) issues
Reply #9 - Jun 1st, 2014 at 8:52pm
Print Post  
Well, for me the primary reason I prefer to use hardware is because I love the technology. Sure, hardware should be faster theoretically but with unreal on my hardware I don't care about 2 fps more or less. I have VSync ON anyways so my CPU and GPU has plenty of unused capacity when I'm playing.

I just love the technology of these advanced sound cards. I've been an enthusiast since the very first SB Live! and the capabilities and performance of the X-Fi are absolutely stunning. I find it a waste not to use it.

It is a shame that Creative seems to have abandoned the path of advanced, feature-rich, hardware-accelerated 3D audio. The blame also goes to Microsoft who killed the path from DS3D to the audio hardware in Vista and newer.

By the way: My card works fine in other games and apps, including some OpenAL ones. But that does not exclude that there may be some driver issue which is being triggered by Unreal's OpenAL.
  
Back to top
WWW  
IP Logged
 
Hyper
Board Moderator
Betatester
*****
Offline


It's Unreal.

Posts: 3001
Joined: Oct 11th, 2002
Re: OpenAL (Creative) issues
Reply #10 - Jun 2nd, 2014 at 12:54am
Print Post  
Update: It has all the appearances that I solved this issue by reverting to the previous driver for my sound card.

I created a thread about it at the Creative forums. I'm glad I can enjoy Unreal in it's fully featured, hardware accelerated OpenAL again. Smiley Thanks for your thoughts.
  
Back to top
WWW  
IP Logged
 
Smirftsch
Forum Administrator
*****
Offline



Posts: 7936
Location: at home
Joined: Apr 30th, 1998
Gender: Male
Re: OpenAL (Creative) issues
Reply #11 - Jun 2nd, 2014 at 6:01am
Print Post  
that's definitely interesting and I am happy it solved that for you. Unfortunately it doesn't give is any chance to track this down any further, but maybe it helps other people having the same issue, doubt many people are really trying to find out what happens there and are using other soundrenderers instead.

Meanwhile I got response from Creative Labs support, trying to get maybe docs or sdk stuff for higher EAX and XRam (while XRam doesn't seem to make sense in any way if gone now in newer cards).
  

Sometimes you have to lose a fight to win the war.
Back to top
WWWICQ  
IP Logged
 
B.F.
New Member
*
Offline


Oldunreal member

Posts: 7
Location: Russia, Novosibirsk
Joined: Nov 14th, 2007
Gender: Male
Re: OpenAL (Creative) issues
Reply #12 - Aug 31st, 2015 at 1:32pm
Print Post  
Windows 10, latest drivers for my X-Fi Titanium and latest beta audio engine. And still no luck with this problem.
And since this is first drivers for Win10, there is no way I can revert to older drivers. Cry
  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
[]KAOS[]Casey
Developer Team
Betatester
Offline


nedm

Posts: 3201
Joined: Aug 7th, 2011
Gender: Male
Re: OpenAL (Creative) issues
Reply #13 - Aug 31st, 2015 at 7:51pm
Print Post  
Funny, I just started investigating this myself because of my own X-FI titanium.

It seems the issue is that sounds never report that they've stopped playing.

You can use GenericSoftware to make the sound work normally, or use Galaxy/FMod. I assume FMod works, but I haven't tried it. Galaxy does make use of EAX, as well.

I am looking into this, since the source is open if I can fix it I can post a build that works.

My current working theory is that the driver is actually broken, but there may be a way to work around it using buffer queues instead of the standard playback method.
  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
Smirftsch
Forum Administrator
*****
Offline



Posts: 7936
Location: at home
Joined: Apr 30th, 1998
Gender: Male
Re: OpenAL (Creative) issues
Reply #14 - Sep 1st, 2015 at 6:42am
Print Post  
I still think OpenALSoft is the way to go. Creative dropped support for OpenAL anyway and the performance differences are negligible. Also new OpenALSoft incorporates finer control for HRTF which will be in next version, while there is no HRTF in Creatives version at all. And don't get me wrong here, I'd happily support Creative's version if there would be still support from them for it.

However, if you find a (hack)fix I see little problems to merge it into main build Smiley
  

Sometimes you have to lose a fight to win the war.
Back to top
WWWICQ  
IP Logged
 
Page Index Toggle Pages: [1] 2 
Send TopicPrint
Bookmarks: del.icio.us Digg Facebook Google Google+ Linked in reddit StumbleUpon Twitter Yahoo