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How to make your games sound better than an orchestra of 333 people

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The sound has always been in second place. If to buy the best graphics we buy the monitors with the highest resolutions, why do we leave out the speakers, headphones and all the audio part? In a certain sense, it is logical: what we see cannot be disguised. A comparison enters our eyes. We believe all this about the frame rates because we are seeing it in the first person. But we neglect the audio until we try a good team we do not realize how much we have been letting go.

So let’s put an end to it. A good video game deserves a good soundtrack. And, if he already brings it, that we as players can listen to all its nuances. Much has changed things from the mono-channel sound or the 8-bit resolution. The chiptune or LoFi have given way to the effects surround three – dimensional, equipment and 7.1 Dolby Atmos technology. A video game of the 21st century is heard in high definition.

What sound card do you have for your games?

First, to know how to achieve the best sound we must know our team. The steps are simple: click on the ‘Start’ menu and select ‘Control Panel’. You can also access directly from the search bar.

Then click on ‘System and security’. Then, click on ‘Device Manager’, in the ‘System’ section. And finally, double-click on ‘Sound, video and game devices’. In this category, you will see the sound card and the information concerning it (outputs, inputs, integrated microphone, etc.). From here we can check the drivers, to update them, and even look for an optional driver that comes installed as standard.

And now?

Voucher. We already know what we have in hand. We must consider that the sound power of our equipment is related to the quality of the DAC (the digital to analog signal converter). A good DAC determines the fidelity of the sound we receive. On the other hand, the amplifier determines the intensity with which we receive this signal. This value is measured in decibels and indicates the signal/noise ratio of the emitting source. It is easy to understand: the higher its amplification capacity (the decibel threshold), the resulting sound will come with greater power. These two components are crucial to this list.

I say all this because it is decisive when it comes to assessing the quality of our sound card. Currently, the sound card is an independent element of the motherboard. If we want, we can change it for a better performance, does not imply a great knowledge of computer science, and simply pay attention to the compatibility between the card and the board.

But if this change does not fit within our budgets or needs, we can always apply a series of improvements to the system we already have. It’s time to improve it through software and hardware.

Pulling out every last drop to our headphones

In other articles, we talk about choosing between an external or internal sound card, even on tricks to equalize the audio of the PC, but there is an essential element among the players who can get much more out of it. Gaming headphones are very important not only for having control of the sound of the game but to be aware of all the elements of the action. The difference between winning or losing in games like ‘Devil Daggers’ or any first-person shooter is how we hear and interpret the sound that comes from all directions.

That said, if our sound card is minimally up to the task, it’s time to take a look at the headset. There is already a wide comparative offer on gamer helmets. Everything depends on our budget and interests. But there are several points that we must take into account: that they are comfortable since we are going to spend enough time with them. They have a quality micro, ideally with TeamSpeak certification, a sound limiter or antipop foam – to avoid the air blows that are generated when speaking.

The usual thing is that they include USB power, with a cable not exceeding two meters to avoid delays in the signal. No small headphones: headband, circumaural-covering the entire ear, with a sensitivity never less than 100 decibels and closed, not to leak sound from the inside but not distracted by outside noise.

An element to take care of is in its insulating coating. The earmuffs not only serve to cushion and accommodate our ear, they are also determinant in how we listen to the audio. The spare parts are cheap and if we look for fabrics such as velvet, to avoid sweating, we will be able to isolate possible leaks and rare artifacts.

Neither should we fall into the vice of raising the volume and end up distorting it. Our hearing will try to compensate for this excess but in the long term, it is very dangerous. An alternative would be to try to improve it through hardware.

There are a handful of gadgets dedicated to this task. Boomstick is one of the most recognized. It is a piece of connection between our PC and headphones and manages to enhance the sound up to 60%. It includes a software that emulates the three-dimensional spaces, dedicating channels and independent equalization to each speaker. Improves and corrects the bass index, the definition and regulates the distortion through a peak limiter. A quick solution to obtain the best results.

Surround software for any device

Software solutions can throw us a cable. Razer, the respected name in the industry of peripherals gaming and all of Lenovo, has its application Surround Personalized 7.1. With this app, we can convert any type of stereo headset into a powerful surround helmet. It allows to make an individual configuration of each speaker and achieve a much richer sound altogether.

But it does not stay here, because within the application we can apply our own EQs, add filters, and save them in the cloud. An ideal option to, for example, apply a specific configuration to each gamer. What am I giving cane to ‘Battlefield 4’? Well, we put more serious. That we are traveling through space and want to hear some impressive orchestral violins in ‘Steller’s’? Well, we adjust the mid and high frequencies.

FX sound is a multi-award company in its applications to enhance and improve the sound. Your DFX Audio Enhancer, with almost 46 million downloads, leaves no room for doubt: it converts stereo signals into 3D surround sound through its spectral analysis technology; offers greater fidelity in each frequency; has independent equalizations by styles; and, of course, it’s compatible with virtually any music player.

This means that if we are listening to music from Pandora or Spotify while playing, it will adapt to the resulting output, but if we only have the game audio activated, it will apply its best to the configuration of that output. We can also change the parameters as we listen to the audio from the computer speakers or from headphones.

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