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Dolby Surround

Discussion in 'Dreamcast' started by 3rdman, Feb 15, 2002.

  1. 3rdman

    3rdman New Member

    NHL 2K2 is in Dolby Surround! It even has the Dolby symbol on the back of the case. I always knew that the DC could do it, but for the life of me, I don't recall ever seeing another title sport the Dolby logo.

    So my question is...what games (besides NHL 2K2) support Dolby surround?
     
  2. Nadius

    Nadius Member

    Alone in the Dark, I think.
     
  3. RadSil

    RadSil New Member

    It's strange that more games don't... Dolby Surround requires no special hardware other than stereo speakers, and the licensing fees are almost non-existant.
     
  4. Fabrizo

    Fabrizo New Member

    Im pretty sure its because Dolby Surround takes up a lot of space. For example, On the PS2 a game called Xenosaga (the reason I bought a PS2) is comming out in a little while in japan on two DVD's. The game is, however, not Dolby Surround, and when asked why it would not incorperate that feature the answer was that if it was to be put into the game it would have to be four DVD's long. Thats a LOT of space just for better sound.

    (Edited by Fabrizo at 8:48 pm on Feb. 20, 2002)
     
  5. 3rdman

    3rdman New Member

    BTW, Alone in the Dark doesn't...at least there is no mention of it on the packaging.
     
  6. SEGA DAVID

    SEGA DAVID New Member

    i wouldnt be suprised if the other 2k2 games have it the new sega sports games

    i have nba nfl and tennis 2k2 and i dont see any labels that it has dolby

    on nhl 2k2 does it say on the cover that it is dolby?
     
  7. Curtis

    Curtis Member

    I think you are confusing Dolby Digital with Dolby Pro-Logic. No special hardware is required for Pro-Logic (well you need a decoder, but that is usually your amp), as it is basically just an extension of standard Stereo. DD requires extra space because it stores 5 seperate channels of audio.
     
  8. 3rdman

    3rdman New Member

    Fabrizo...The PS2 doesn't do any 5.1 surround or I should say that it doesn't have the hardware BUILT-IN to do it. EA has been able to create DTS surround on titles like SSX Big (or something like that) but the problem is that the surround effect is being simulated via software and is therefore using precious CPU cycles to do it.

    I assume that the developers were commenting on the lack of surround sound in the cut-scenes?

    *disclaimer*

    I am NO technical person...If I have posted an incorrect analyzation of the PS2's surround potential, well you know...yadda, yadda, yadda.
     
  9. Curtis

    Curtis Member

    3rdman, I think that you are close (but I am not an expert on the PS2 either), except that I think that the PS2 has an optical output for DTS streams. This means if you have a DTS compatable amp, you can sent the 5.1 surround stream via this optical output to the amp. The sound is then decoded by the amp. The PS2, AFAIK, does not have any "true" surround sound decoding capabilities.
     
  10. gameboy900

    gameboy900 New Member

    Well I figured I might as well clear all this up.

    To begin a few definitions.

    Dolby Surround (aka Pro-Logic): This uses 2 channels of audio and through a special encoding process allows a compatible decoder (receiver) to create 2 extra sound channels (center and rear). It has been in use for a long time now (VHS tapes have it and even the SNES did it). It takes a moderate amount of processing power to encode it on the fly. DC is more than capable of doing this since it only needs stereo outputs on the console.

    Dolby Digital (aka AC-3, Dolby 5.1): This format contains 6 DISCRETE channels of data. Meaning that each speaker gets it's own dedicated channel and you don't get the rather lousy seperation you get with Dolby Surround. The ONLY system that is capable of doing this on the fly is the Xbox since it has a dedicated encoder chip in it. PS2 CAN do it but only in videos where the soundtrack is pre encoded...like a regular dvd movie. In game the PS2 has to stick to regular stereo or surround sound...although most likely a pre encoded soundtrack can be used. Sound fx are out of the question though.

    DTS: This is just a higher bitrate variation on Dolby Digital. There IS NO CONSOLE THAT CAN GENERATE THIS IN REALTIME. Cutscenes MAY be able to use this on the PS2 and Xbox but only with the direct digital connection (toslink or coax) to a DTS decoder. Neither console has the power to decode the signal into anything else and still run a game. (Well maybe PONG with awesome sound).

    Ok so here are the capabilities of the 4 next gen consoles:

    Dreamcast: It can do stereo sound and Dolby Surround (using extra processing power from the cpu). It CANNOT do Dolby Digital EVER since it has no digital outputs. MAX CHANNELS: 2/4 (Real/Simulated)

    PS2: It can do stereo and Dolby Surround (again with extra help from the cpu). It can play Dolby Digital from videos (and most likely music too) but the output is on the toslink outputs only and you need a decoder. It cannot output Dolby digital for ingame sounds (sound fx) since it has no AC-3 encoder in it and the cpu would die trying to do it. It CANNOT play DTS on the fly...not sure if it can output it to a decoder over the digital connection. MAX CHANNELS: 2/4/6 (Real/Simulated/Digital Connect (pre encoded ONLY))

    Xbox: This system can do stereo and Dolby Surround (the on board sound chip can do this) through the regular stereo connectors. It can do Dolby Digital from videos and IN REALTIME (thanks to the built in AC-3 encoder chip) over the digital connection (toslink or coax). DTS can be output over the digital connection to an external decoder. It cannot create a DTS signal in realtime only pass on the signal from the disc. MAX CHANNELS: 2/4/6 (Real/Simulated/Digital connect)

    Gamecube: This system is capable of all the same things Dreamcast is. It does however have enough muscle to do Dolby Pro-Logic 2 (just a more accurate version of Dolby Surround) as seen in Star Wars. It cannot output Dolby Digital or DTS since there is no digital connection on the system...yet. Even if it could the same restrictions that the ps2 has would apply. MAX CHANNELS: 2/4 (Real/Simulated)

    Phew...I hope this clears everything up.
     
  11. eatpenguin

    eatpenguin New Member

    so, the "DD" logo stands for dolby surround, not dolby digital? >_< so confusing!
     
  12. ExCyber

    ExCyber Staff Member

    That's just the Dolby logo.
     
  13. 3rdman

    3rdman New Member

    I was right about the PS2...

    http://www.psxextreme.com/scripts/news2/new.asp?newID=942

    "Electronic Arts announced today that both Sled Storm 2 and Westwood's Pirates: The Legend of Black Kat would utilize Digital Theater Systems (DTS). As you may recall, EA previously announced their partnership with DTS allowing them to produce games featuring the 5.1 channel surrond sound. At this point, only SSX: Tricky and NHL 2002 used the technology

    To be able to take advantage of this technology, a 5.1 speaker setup and a DTS receiver/decoder are required. DTS technology allows movies (and now games) to be heard in six discreet channels--left, right, center, left rear, right rear, and subwoofer. Also, unlike previous PS2 titles that used DTS, EA's lineup of DTS-enabled games will constantly stream the surround sound signal during gameplay, not just during cutscenes."

    Now the problem with this is that the CPU is taking a BIG hit which would normally be used for other processing. I find it silly that EA would even waste their time trying to make it work. Maybe they did it for all the free publicity. Now, if you'll excuse me, I must wash myself after visiting that website.

    :p
     
  14. gameboy900

    gameboy900 New Member

    Well not really. If all the game does is stream a DTS soundtrack then it just sends that to the digital connectors directly. Of course they will need a second copy of the soundtrack for those people who don't have DTS.

    I doubt they woudl try to do DTS in realtime. Heck a 1ghz pc still has problems encoding the stuff in realtime.
     
  15. 3rdman

    3rdman New Member

    I remember reading impressions from a guy that was playing SSX Tricky with a DTS system and verified that it did indeed work. He went on to say how he could hear the other skiers around him and as he passed them, etc.

    However, he also went on to complain about the poor sound quality and the fact that the center channel seemed to be muted. Consider yet another half-assed job by EA. :)

    (Edited by 3rdman at 1:28 pm on Feb. 25, 2002)
     
  16. norberto

    norberto New Member

    oh yeah by the way, If you know anybody that has a surround sound system and halo, you need to experience it. it is awsome. you will never want to play it or any game with out surround sound.
     
  17. FLEABttn

    FLEABttn New Member

    Well, since I never want to play that game again anyways...
     
  18. 3rdman

    3rdman New Member

    Really? I can never get enough of Halo! ...and yes, in 5.1 it is even more amazing!
     
  19. FLEABttn

    FLEABttn New Member

    I can't stand Halo. I don't like it as an FPS. My friend brought over his Xbox and I was excited because he had Halo and he said it was better than Perfect Dark, and all the publications out there liked it also. I got sick of it after 30 min. It was so...boring.

    I need to start listening to Penny-Arcade more. They were on the money saying that it was crap (IMO).
     
  20. 3rdman

    3rdman New Member

    30 min!?!?

    Believe me when I tell you...IT GETS MUCH BETTER!
     

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