Sounds and Music

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Sins of a Solar Empire uses OGG files for music and event sounds.

It is possible to use .mp3 and .wav files. Edit the GameInfo\SoundDialogue.sounddata or GameInfo\SoundMusic to reflect the different extensions.

1104 event sounds 73 music tracks. The original Sound files were 216 MB.


There are two things you should be concerned about when creating your audio files; those are sampling rate and bit rate.

Sampling rate represents the sound frequency range. The higher sampling rate the file is, the wider the frequency range is. In other words, higher is better quality. Your lows will be lower, your highs will be higher. Lower rates can dampen the highs and lows so that audio quality is lower. You won't notice that much on a cheap set of headphones, but on high quality ones you'll notice a huge difference.

Lets talk about sample rate and the Nyquist Theory.  This theory is that the actual upper threshold of a piece of digital audio will top out at half the sample rate.  So if you are recording at 44.1kHz, the highest frequencies generated will be around 22kHz.  That is 2khz higher than the typical human with excellent hearing can hear. 


Bit rate defines how many "bits" of space the file takes per second of audio. Obviously the higher the bit rate, the higher quality audio you'll have.

So for best quality, you want high sampling rates and high bit rates. Sampling rates do not affect file size as much as bit rates do, so if space is at a premium (like on an expansion card) a good trade off is to create high sampling rate files with a lower bit rate, or use a variable bit rate (VBR) with a moderately high "base" setting, like 128kbps.