Top 5 Best Virtual Surround Sound Apps for Gaming
If you’re a seasoned gamer, chances are you’ve had a brush with surround sound. There are many different forms of surround sound, and if you’re not familiar, you can read our overview here. If you’re still thinking about whether or not to make the switch to surround sound, or if you just want to learn more about virtual surround, look no further. Here are the top 5 best virtual surround sound apps.
Spatial Sound Card
Grammy-nominee Tom Ammermann has been researching Headphone Surround 3D and building professional spatial audio software since 2009. Recently he’s put out Spatial Sound Card, which is a sophisticated platform for enjoying surround sound music, movies, and gaming. While the software itself is free, to unlock the rest of the gaming features you’ll need to cough up some dough.
Based in India, Boom3D’s software is designed with surround sound in mind. In addition to its surround sound virtualizer, the platform also possesses a volume booster, hand-selected EQs, as well as an audio-player and free access to more than 20k radio stations. It has more features than necessary for a true gaming app, and there’s no word on latency as of yet. We think lovers of music and movies will find Boom3D helpful, but it doesn’t seem specialized for gaming.
Leaders in immersive gaming technology, Razer Surround has created a surround sound application for their 5.1 and 7.1 enabled headphones. At a glance, the software seems capable of creating some awesome ambiences and crystal-clear sound effects for gaming. But, the Razer Krakens only have 2 drivers, meaning you’re buying headphones for virtual surround not true surround. If you already have headphones, it’s best to purchase software that unlocks virtual surround sound, instead of buying more headphones. It’s too bad that the software is tethered to the purchase of their specialized headphones, but that’s just how Big Gaming makes its profit.
Price: Purchase Razer Kraken to Unlock ($90)
SBX Pro Studio
SBX Pro Studio has a range of features available for any seasoned gamer. According to their website, SBX Pro Studio features “ algorithms that provide audio enhancement to any audio by optimizing the listening experience for both two-channel and multi-channel sources.” In non-tech terms, that just means the software detects when a program or media is using 5.1 or 7.1, and outputs a virtualized mix to your headphones. Just like with Razer Surround, you need to purchase SBX’s headphones to really reap the rewards of this software.
Price: Purchase SoundBlasterX to Unlock ($50 – $110)
Created by several audio engineers in the entertainment hub of Los Angeles, CA, Audio Royale is one of the best options for a low-cost, high-value virtual surround sound application. Audio Royale is the world’s first sound driver specially tuned for battle royale. PC Gamers can now experience full 3D sound without paying out the battle bus for a pair of surround sound headphones. Audio Royale works by unlocking the 5.1 or 7.1 soundtracks of your favorite games, whether it’s Apex Legends, Fortnite, or PUBG. Just relax, and let Audio Royale do all the work.
Price: 14-day free trial, then $1.99 per month or $19.99 for the year.
For a seasoned gamer or someone starting new, the best option is generally one that is cost-effective, works with your current setup, and has features that you will use. You might find that virtual surround doesn’t work for your current setup, and that’s OK! In fact, while helpful in some specific cases, extra features can confuse users or cause excess CPU usage on your machine. Ultimately, the choice is yours, but if you want software that you can integrate with your current gaming setup at no-cost to you, with the lowest-latency yet, get a free trial of Audio Royale today.