O3A Core

The O3A Core plugin library is a set of essential tools that provides all the basics to produce a higher order ambisonic (HOA) 3D mix. And it's free!

The plugins included are:

  • O3A Panners (Standard, Classic, Hemisphere, Large, Two Channel and Eight Channel)
  • O3A Decoders (Mono, Stereo and 5.1 Basic)
  • O3A Converters to/from FuMa or classic ambisonics, and between orders
  • O3A Beamer
  • O3A Virtual Microphone
  • O3A Gain
  • O3A Look and O3A Rotation
  • O3A Spatial Delay
  • O3A Metering (Standard and Signal)
  • O3A Visualisers (Standard, Hemisphere, Colourizer and Flare)

These are VST2 or AAX plugins for macOS X (10.7+) or Windows (Win7+) running on 32bit/64bit Intel. They can be hosted in some Digital Audio Workstations (DAWs) that can handle tracks with sufficiently high channel counts. Options include Reaper, Pro Tools Ultimate, Pyramix and Max/MSP. These plugins use the SN3D higher order ambisonic (HOA) convention, at third order, which needs 16 channels. The exact channel counts needed for individual plugins are listed below. Not all plugins are supported in AAX.

We use some free software, data and artwork in these products. Before downloading, please check the technical requirements and license agreement. By beginning the download process you agree to be bound by our terms and conditions.

Making 3D Audio

These plugins use 16 audio channels to capture a 3D audio scene. Technically, this is SN3D-encoded third order ambisonics using ACN channel ordering (sometimes known as AmbiX). We refer to it here as O3A B-Format, or just O3A for short.

You can make this O3A material using a number of techniques including upmixing, but the simplest way is often to use one of the panning plugins from this library.

Simple Panning Workflow

There are six different panners in this library, so you can choose the one that is most natural for you. They all have elevation controls. With O3A, you can put sounds in any direction: left, right, front, back, and also up and down.

Mixing and Mastering 3D Audio

These 3D audio streams can be mixed together and modified in 3D. You can do most of the things that you can do with a stereo stream, and quite a lot more too! For instance, the O3A Core includes plugins that allow the whole 3D scene to be rotated, perhaps because the listener has turned to the side.

Simple Mix Rotation Workflow

We also make plugins that manipulate the scene in various ways (spatial EQ, movements and so on) or add 3D reverb.

Seeing What's Going On

The O3A Core includes O3A Visualiser and O3A Flare plugins, which provide a real-time view of sound directions in the O3A mix.

O3A Flare

... And Hearing

One of the clever things about O3A (and ambisonics in general) is that the O3A mix isn't tied to a particular speaker layout, so you can "decode" it for different speaker layouts, or binaural stereo.

O3A Decoding

The O3A Core comes with a few simple decoders to get you started, including simple 5.1 and stereo. Blue Ripple Sound also offers a dedicated decoding product with more preset options, including binaural 3D sound on headphones. Rapture3D "Advanced" lets you set up custom layouts with many speakers and use personalised HRTFs on headphones.

Panners

O3A Panner

O3A Panner

I/O: 1 in, 16 out

This O3A panner places a sound in a particular direction in a 3D O3A mix.

O3A Panner - Classic

O3A Panner - Classic

I/O: 1 in, 16 out

This O3A panner places a sound in a particular direction in a 3D O3A mix. It has a simplified display.

O3A Panner - Hemisphere

O3A Panner - Hemisphere

I/O: 1 in, 16 out

This O3A panner places a sound in a particular direction in a 3D O3A mix. It has an alternative 'hemisphere' display.

O3A Panner - Large

O3A Panner - Large

I/O: 1 in, 16 out

This O3A panner places a sound in a particular direction in a 3D O3A mix.

O3A Panner - Two Channel

O3A Panner - Two Channel

I/O: 2 in, 16 out

This O3A panner places two sounds in particular directions in a 3D O3A mix.

O3A Panner - Eight Channel

O3A Panner - Eight Channel

I/O: 8 in, 16 out

This O3A panner places eight sounds in particular directions in a 3D O3A mix.

Visualisers

O3A Visualiser

O3A Visualiser

I/O: 16 in, 16 out

This plugin shows a real-time view of an O3A mix, so you can see what you're doing.

O3A Visualiser - Hemisphere

O3A Visualiser - Hemisphere

I/O: 16 in, 16 out

This plugin shows a real-time view of an O3A mix, so you can see what you're doing.

O3A Colourizer

O3A Colourizer

I/O: 16 in, 16 out

This plugin shows a real-time view of an O3A mix, so you can see what you're doing. Colours depend on frequency content.

O3A Flare

O3A Flare

I/O: 16 in, 16 out

This plugin shows a real-time view of an O3A mix using an active analysis. It can be used with the View/ViewVR applications.

Rotation

O3A Look

O3A Look

I/O: 16 in, 16 out

This plugin rotates the 3D O3A sound scene as if the listener's head had turned to look in a particular direction.

O3A Rotation

O3A Rotation

I/O: 16 in, 16 out

This plugin allows a 3D O3A mix to be rotated by any angle.

Decoders and Converters

O3A Decoder - Stereo

O3A Decoder - Stereo

I/O: 16 in, 2 out

This plugin renders robust, high quality stereo from 3D O3A mixes.

Please note that this is not a binaural decoder.

O3A Decoder - Mono

O3A Decoder - Mono

I/O: 16 in, 1 out

This plugin renders simple mono from 3D O3A mixes.

O3A Decoder - 5.1 Basic

O3A Decoder - 5.1 Basic

I/O: 16 in, 6 out

This plugin renders robust, high quality 5.1 surround from 3D O3A mixes.

O3A Decoder - FuMa

O3A Decoder - FuMa

I/O: 16 in, 16 out

This plugin converts O3A ambisonic audio to FuMa ambisonic audio. FuMa is compatible with "classic" B-Format.

O3A Injector - FuMa

O3A Injector - FuMa

I/O: 16 in, 16 out

This plugin converts FuMa ambisonic audio to O3A ambisonic audio. FuMa is compatible with "classic" B-Format.

O3A Decoder - O1A

O3A Decoder - O1A

I/O: 16 in, 4 out

This plugin extracts first order O1A ambisonics from a third order O3A stream.

O3A Decoder - O2A

O3A Decoder - O2A

I/O: 16 in, 9 out

This plugin extracts second order O2A ambisonics from a third order O3A stream.

O3A Injector - O1A

O3A Injector - O1A

I/O: 4 in, 16 out

This plugin injects first order O1A ambisonics into a third order O3A stream.

O3A Injector - O2A

O3A Injector - O2A

I/O: 9 in, 16 out

This plugin injects second order O2A ambisonics into a third order O3A stream.

Virtual Microphones

O3A Beamer

O3A Beamer

I/O: 16 in, 1 out

This plugin extracts sound from a particular direction in an O3A mix.

O3A Virtual Microphone

O3A Virtual Microphone

I/O: 16 in, 2 out

This plugin simulates a conventional stereo microphone placed within a 3D O3A sound scene.

Metering

O3A Meter - Signal

O3A Meter - Signal

I/O: 16 in, 16 out

This checks the presence of sound in channels of an O3A stream.

O3A Meter

O3A Meter

I/O: 16 in, 16 out

This measures the sound level in an O3A stream.

Soundfield Modification

O3A Gain

O3A Gain

I/O: 16 in, 16 out

This plugin applies a gain to an O3A stream.

O3A Spatial Delay

O3A Spatial Delay

I/O: 16 in, 16 out

This plugin applies a delay effect to an entire O3A scene. The delay includes a feedback loop with scene reflection, rotation and filtering.

Technical Requirements

Please check everything is okay here before downloading software.

Operating System

Supported versions of Microsoft Windows are Windows 7, Windows 8 and Windows 10. Supported versions of Apple macOS X are 10.7 or later, Intel only. VST plugins are generally available in 32bit or 64bit forms on both platforms (packaged as a Universal Binary on macOS). The AAX plugins are 64bit only.

VST Host

The VST plugins require a VST 2 host with shell plugin support.

These plugins do not work with all VST 2 hosts. One reason for this is that the O3A plugins need large numbers of channels on their input or output busses. Check the individual plugins for the channel counts they need, but all of the O3A plugins need at least 16 channels on each track, and some need more. Also note that not all VST 2 hosts can use shell plugins. In particular, at the time of writing shell plugins are not supported in Nuendo or Cubase.

AAX Host

The AAX plugins require Pro Tools Ultimate, or Pro Tools HD v12.8.2 or later.

Due to channel and stem restrictions, not all plugins are supported in AAX. Please see the plugin descriptions for details.

PC Hardware

Please check your PC meets the following requirements:

  • Intel Pentium D CPU or better.
  • 200MB of free disk space.

Permissions

You'll need administrator permissions while installing on Windows. The software probably won't install properly using a "restricted" account.