AES New York 2019
Game Audio & XR Track Event GA03

Wednesday, October 16, 10:45 am — 11:45 am (1E13)

Game Audio & XR: GA03 - Interactive AR Audio Using Spark

Dren McDonald, Facebook
Kristi Boeckmann, Facebook - Menlo Park, CA, USA
Matt Nichols, Facebook
Grey Robbins, Facebook

In the past year, over a billion people have used SparkAR experiences ( at 1 hour 24min in). It’s a remarkable number. In apps such as Messenger, Messenger Kids, Instagram, the Facebook app, and in devices such as Portal, AR is becoming mainstream. All of those experiences were generated with Spark AR, a free tool that anyone can use to develop AR effects. The Facebook AR Audio team would like to demonstrate some of our AR effects and discuss the challenges we faced in bringing our ideas to fruition. Topics within the AR audio design discussion will include dynamic music, ambience, audio triggers based on face and hand gestures, asset variation/randomization, microphone DSP capabilities, target plane tracking triggers, importing beat maps/beat detection, and javascripting. We can demonstrate the Spark audio workflow using the patch editor and also demonstrate effects that were designed using javascript. Several AR games have been developed in Spark and we’d like to show how those were created, in addition to showing off the interactive AR stories on Portal called Story Time. Spark AR is free and available on both Windows and MacOS. While there is some documentation about audio within Spark AR, we feel that by showing effects that we have built and prototypes that we are developing, we can show what is possible within Spark AR. Hopefully we can inspire others in the interactive audio community to dive into AR audio to see what they can create. This short talk from F8 highlights topics that we will go into a deep dive on with this talk (

AES Technical Council This session is presented in association with the AES Technical Committee on Audio for Games

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