The PS5 console will include Tempest – Sony’s own proprietary 3D audio format, which is optimised to provide immersive object-based 3D sound in games.
According to Sony, Tempest will transform the gaming experience and will allow listeners to hear where individual raindrops are landing in a game's environment. Similar to that of Dolby Atmos, Tempest is designed to allow the listener to hear sounds as if they were happening around them.
The way it works is that the 3D audio technology deploys timed effects – using a host of audio algorithms – to create natural, true-to-life soundscapes that trick the user’s brain into pinpointing the precise location of each and every sound.
An expansion of the technology used in the PSVR virtual reality headset – which is capable of replicating 50 sound sources – Sony says that the PS5 uses object-based spatial sound technology to create some of the most advanced 3D audio available. The PS5 boasts hundreds of intricate sounds – and in better quality when compared to the PSVR audio tech.
Sony has been clear about wanting to focus on delivering 3D audio through headphones first, however, PS5 lead architect, Mark Cerny has said that the console will also be capable of delivering 3D audio through a regular set-up – whether it be television speakers, soundbars or surround sound systems.