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Fmod has a music system - parameter based "cue < theme < file" type graphical layout. Almost Unreal Editor / fancy MaxMSP style setup thats geared strictly for interactive music.

However, they also have another way of implementing music through the event editor. I've seen people straight up create multi-track events with individual files referenced and manipulating the playhead of the music with parameters -

OR

Again, using the event editor - dragging in a multi-channel file (say a 10 channel - 5 stereo files), baked with audacity or another software, that simply crossfades between sets of channels using 1 parameter.

My question is:

When do you use the interactive music player built into Fmod, and when do you use the event editor for implementing music? What are the system resource advantages/disadvantages of using either/or?

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up vote 1 down vote accepted

(Based on how you phrased your question, I assume you're talking about FMOD Designer, rather than FMOD Ex.)

Long story short, the music system is better for music... unless you want to do something complicated.

The music system is much more efficient resource-wise than the event system could ever hope to be, and it's specifically designed for sample-accurate stitching and precise timing. However, the price tag is that it lacks most of the event system's features and has a somewhat unintuitive interface.

The event system has a whole bunch more features, and the ability to automate effects based on game parameters means there's a lot more options available for controlling sound... but the event editor doesn't allow you to seek within a sample, and events can suffer from latency and delays that don't exist in the music system. Those two issues can kill a lot of interactive music ideas before they get off the ground.

It has been announced on the FMOD forums that the upcoming FMOD Studio will address the problems of the event editor and the interactive music system. I could tell you how, but I work for Firelight Technologies, and it'd seem too much like a plug.

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@JosephHarvey Thanks for the answer - that helps a ton! Mind if I hit you up with an email sometime soon? Email me if so - ccc@c3sound.com - and i'll reply. –  C3Sound Mar 20 '12 at 4:02
    
@C3Sound I'd be happy to e-mail you, but there are other people at the company who are more familiar with the specifics of this than I am. If that's what you're planning to ask about, it might be more efficient for you to e-mail support@fmod.org or to post on the FMOD Forums. –  Joseph Harvey Mar 21 '12 at 0:17
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