In the mid 1990s I worked on a 3D sound technology called A3D.
Below is a video of the 3D audio demos that were bundled with A3D audio chips and sound cards (called Vortex). IMHO our work on A3D was far ahead of its time – just the audio part, not the graphics 🙂
I also recently found an old A3D CD-ROM with demo movies that I’ve posted below.
Listening tips: A3D sounds best on headphones (play the videos labeled “headphone version”, make sure you have your left/right ear pieces on the correct way). When listening to the speaker versions, there’s a listening sweet spot – your two speakers should be facing you and be the same distance away from you. You’re in the sweet spot when some of the sounds feel like they are right next to you instead of coming from the speakers.
The first are two videos of an A3D video game reel. You should hear lots of sounds moving and Doppler shifting all around you. See if you recognize any of the games (hundreds of video games used A3D in the mid 90s).
And here are some listening demos with sounds moving around your head (the view is top down with you as the listener in the center of the screen and sounds moving around you). Each demo is available in three versions: standard stereo, 3D over headphones, and 3D over speakers. Note in the stereo version how the sounds stay between the speakers (or between the ears in the case of headphones), and how in the 3D versions the sound stage extends beyond the speakers and outside your ears/head on headphones.