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Audio implementation / format? - zircon - Jun 7, 2008 08:09 AM

Hi, I'm a freelance composer working with several other producers and composers in creating a royalty-free music catalog specifically designed for iPhone games. However, while we have experience with other mobile formats, the iPhone platform is still very new to us.

What sort of audio implementation is standard for iPhone games? Is there a particular music or looping format - eg. 22khz/16bit WAV, MP3, AAC? As developers, what would your preferred audio delivery format be?

Thanks in advance!


Audio implementation / format? - Aressera - Jun 7, 2008 10:35 AM

Since the iPhone runs a trimmed down version of OS X, I would assume it can read most standard audio formats. Not totally sure about this. I guess the only ones who would know the answer to this question are the developers with the iPhone SDK.

As a developer, I'd like to have the highest quality (lossless) format you could deliver. This means usually an AIFF or WAV file with the highest bit rate and sample rate at which the audio was recorded. The developer can then convert this file to a lossy common/proprietary format for the actual game.


Audio implementation / format? - bronxbomber92 - Jun 7, 2008 11:35 AM

If you go to the iPhone developer page, and read the "iPhone OS Programming Guide", there is a section on Audio, and it describes the available APIs, and preferred formats for audio on the iPhone.


Audio implementation / format? - arekkusu - Jun 7, 2008 11:54 AM

As a developer, I'd like to have the smallest possible footprint in memory and on disk, and have programmatic control over mixing (sequence order, track enable, tempo, panning, etc.) Sacrificing audio quality is an acceptable tradeoff.

Baked formats like AAC are terrible for this. Trackers are much better.


Audio implementation / format? - Frank C. - Jun 7, 2008 01:50 PM

Aressera Wrote:As a developer, I'd like to have the highest quality (lossless) format you could deliver. This means usually an AIFF or WAV file with the highest bit rate and sample rate at which the audio was recorded. The developer can then convert this file to a lossy common/proprietary format for the actual game.
Having a pristine master you can crush and re-crush during development is fine, but once you decide on a delivery format it's usually best to leave the final conversion to the audio folks. Mixing and mastering for mobile platforms and compression schemes like MP3 is an art form in and of itself.


Audio implementation / format? - Aressera - Jun 7, 2008 02:52 PM

Frank C. Wrote:Having a pristine master you can crush and re-crush during development is fine, but once you decide on a delivery format it's usually best to leave the final conversion to the audio folks. Mixing and mastering for mobile platforms and compression schemes like MP3 is an art form in and of itself.

I am aware of this, and I was assuming that the developers would have the tools available to do this well.


Audio implementation / format? - zircon - Jun 17, 2008 07:49 AM

Thanks for the responses. It seems like Redbook WAV/AIFF is the best bet, then? Conversion/encoding can always be done, of course.

bronxbomber92: It looks like one needs to be an iPhone developer in order to access Apple's help resources - could you copy and paste or summarize the section on preferred audio formats?


Audio implementation / format? - OneSadCookie - Jun 17, 2008 06:50 PM

So sign up for a free iPhone developer membership and access the documentation yourself...


Audio implementation / format? - zircon - Jun 19, 2008 08:33 PM

I wasn't aware that anyone could sign up - this is, literally, my only question on the topic of iPhone game development (specifically, audio implementation) so I didn't think it made sense for me to go through the signup process as a developer. However, if that's the only way to get the information, then I'll go ahead and do it.


Audio implementation / format? - Talyn - Jul 8, 2008 02:47 PM

It has come to my attention that although this post may have been helpful, the terms of use regarding the iPhone SDK may put me, my employees, and my application into a legal bind should this post remain. So, until the iPhone SDK is released from the Apple Confidential Information agreement to which I conform, further informative posts by myself, my employees, or anyone using the SDK at this time should be reconsidered as a breach of contract. My sincerest apologies. I will be happy to help when legal recourse no longer prevents me from doing so.


Audio implementation / format? - AnotherJake - Jul 8, 2008 03:50 PM

No, no, no... You read that all wrong!

And you didn't read the warnings about iPhone SDK being under NDA, so I can't tell you what you read wrong or how to fix it. You'll have to wait a few days.