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Bleeding Edge

Ninja Theory likes the dedicated audio chip in Xbox Series X

The Bleeding Cool sound team has been talking about how hardware improvements will make things better for audio designers.

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We still don't know a whole lot about PlayStation 5 as Sony is keeping the lid tight on all new information. This has led to Microsoft doing quite the opposite and the company is now drip-feeding the video game community more information every week about Xbox Series X. Thanks to this approach, the company has built a huge media presence.

One of the things that has been revealed about the console is that it comes equipped with dedicated audio hardware acceleration, something often really expensive gaming computers have but that is basically unheard of when it comes to consoles. And this is great for both audiophiles and everyone else as it means better sound and less strain on the GPU/RAM - which essentially means more digital horsepower for other stuff.

And it turns out that some developers are really happy about this, with Ninja Theory being one of them. In an interview with VGC, Senior Sound Designer Daniele Galante said:

"It's extremely exciting. We're going to have a dedicated chip to work with audio, which means we finally won't have to fight with programmers and artists for memory and CPU power.

Ninja Theory's audio lead David Garcia, seems to have similar opinions, and added:

"We take for granted that graphics are powered by their own video cards. But in audio, we haven't had anything like that. Now we have some power dedicated to us.

"I really like how Microsoft is giving us more tools to improve the sound and to be more creative. Because at the end of the day it's not a matter of, 'we want more memory because we are more cool', we just want to be able to do our jobs without thinking about limitations.

"Making games always has you thinking about technical limitations. Eventually, these limitations become less and less the more you evolve with new consoles, but at the same time it's always a constant thing: These are the maximum number of voices we can have because otherwise, the game is going to lag."

We've heard about win/win situations before, but this rather sounds like a win/win/win situation with happy programmers, sound designers... and gamers.

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