I'm looking at purchasing a headset with true 7.1 audio to use primarily for gaming, including with the Oculus Rift (I'm aware of the more marginal difference between 7.1 and stereo when using headphones as opposed to external speakers, still going ahead with the purchase though).
I'm just a little concerned as to how positional audio will work in VR when using a headset. I've used either external (5.1) speakers or the Rift's integrated headphones until now, and the positional audio has been great. I notice the way audio is coming out of the external speakers does not change as I turn my head when wearing the Rift, while the audio is correctly redistributed from one speaker to another when using the Rift's headphones and I turn my head. For example, using a Flight Simulator and flying an airplane with a front-mounted engine, the sound of the engine always comes from the front speakers regardless of how I turn my head (which is accurate) when using the external speakers. When using the headphones, the sound of the engine goes from being output roughly equally from both drivers to mostly output from the left one if, for example, I turn my head to the right (as the engine is now on my left in VR).
But if I use, say, an analogue 7.1 headset instead of the Rift's integrated headphones, am I right in saying this function will be broken? My understanding is the software will see the headset as a normal set of 7.1 speakers and function similarly to the external speaker setup I have now (it won't recognise them as headphones sitting on and turning with my head - rather it will assume the headset is stationary and facing forward). To use the above Flight Sim example, using a third-party headset my understanding is no matter which way I turn my head the sound of the engine will always be coming from in front of me - even if I'm not facing the engine).
Anyone have any insight as to how the issue can be resolved? I would be using 3 3.5mm analogue outputs from an AV receiver (hooked up through HDMI).
I looked in the audio settings for both SteamVR and Oculus and can find no option to 'flag' certain output devices as headphones.