One thing I highlighted earlier this week when PlayStation revealed their PlayStation 5 controller, DualSense, was the in-built microphone. As impressive as it is, and the fact that it would make voice-chat in game easier, I was worried about just how annoying it could potentially be. People online play music, there’s a baby crying in the background, other kids shouting obscenities, personal conversations, and more.
There’s a lot of hazards when you play online, lads.
But now, Sony PlayStation kept this in mind, and it seems they have a solution to at least some of the problems with an in-built mic. First reported by segmentnext, a patent filed in February and published a day before the reveal, explains how the new DualSense controller’s “microphone array” will work.
“When three or more microphones are included in the array of microphones, it is possible to determine the location of a sound source relative to the microphone array [that] can be localized based on the relative timing of its sound as captured by each of the microphones.” PlayStation explained on the patent.
“Furthermore, captured sound can be processed to exclude sounds which do not emanate from a certain region of the interactive environment.” they continued.
Having three microphones is the key to PlayStation’s ideology with their in-built mic. It will be able to detect the position of sound, and cancel out noise that isn’t coming directly from the user. They also mentioned that this will help to eliminate ‘crosstalk’, meaning when two players are using voice-chat in the same room.
“Moreover, when multiple controllers are utilized, then the captured audio data from the multiple controllers can be analyzed in combination, along with the locations and orientations of the controllers, to enable determination of the locations from which sounds originate with high levels of accuracy.” the document mentions.
At the very least, PlayStation have acknowledged that having an in-built mic has its issues, and have taken steps to counteract that. Of course, this won’t totally eliminate background noise, but it’ll help. There’s still going to be people using cheap headsets, headphones they got for free somewhere, which will pick up ambient noise as usual.
But hey, next-gen gaming needs some next-gen features, so in that sense, PlayStation are killing it when it comes to how games will be experienced in the fast-approaching future.