What is Valorant’s HRTF setting? Audio enhancements explained

Valorant gameplayRiot Games

Valorant’s 2.06 update on March 30 introduced an all-new setting to help improve in-game audio. The Head Related Transfer Function (HRTF) might be a little confusing at first, but here’s a quick rundown on how it all works.

Getting the jump on your opponents can be absolutely pivotal in Valorant. One of the best ways of doing just that is by listening out for various audio cues. From ability sounds to character voice lines, right down to the sound of footsteps.

Almost every action in the game makes some kind of noise. Being able to hear the exact locations of these actions might just swing a round in your favor. 

Thankfully, with the new HRTF audio setting in Valorant, hearing your enemies should be more precise than ever before. The new feature aims to provide a more accurate audio experience. Here’s how it works and why you should enable it.

What is the HRTF setting in Valorant?

Valorant gameplayRiot Games
Valorant’s HRTF feature aims to improve audio quality across the board.

If you play with audio coming through speakers, this setting won’t mean a whole lot to you. The HRTF feature in Valorant is specifically designed to improve the audio experience for headphone users.

Whether you’ve got a state-of-the-art headset or you’re running with a decade-old pair of headphones, this feature will come in handy no matter what. HRTF provides “simulated surround sound,” allowing you to more accurately hear audio from all directions.

If an enemy Sage is directly behind you, her location will sound more precise with the HRTF setting enabled. If she then rotates around you, you’ll have a much better idea of exactly where she is, thanks to the clarity of her footstep audio.

For the time being, this setting only applies to audio cues from footsteps, reloads, and Deathmatch respawns, Riot outlined. However, that doesn’t mean further improvements won’t be coming down the line.

The developers also recommend players “give HRTF a few tries.” At first, the feature might not click for everyone. But given enough time, the more accurate 3D audio setting could have you improving at Valorant day by day.

If you already have high-fidelity 3D audio settings through your current headset, it’s still worth testing this new feature, according to Riot. However, you’ll want to disable “any other 3D audio processing while using this feature.”

Valorant gameplayRiot Games
With HRTF enabled, it’ll be much easier to tell when you’re being flanked.

Ultimately, HRTF has one clear focus: to improve the quality of your audio in Valorant.

No longer will footsteps be confusing to properly track down. Enemies shouldn’t be able to flank you as easily. Overall, your experience should be much improved with HRTF enabled.