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(This is the documentation for SDL3, which is under heavy development and the API is changing! SDL2 is the current stable version!)


Convenience function for straightforward audio init for the common case.


SDL_AudioStream* SDL_OpenAudioDeviceStream(SDL_AudioDeviceID devid, const SDL_AudioSpec *spec, SDL_AudioStreamCallback callback, void *userdata);

Function Parameters

spec the audio stream's data format. Required.
callback A callback where the app will provide new data for playback, or receive new data for capture. Can be NULL, in which case the app will need to call SDL_PutAudioStreamData or SDL_GetAudioStreamData as necessary.
userdata App-controlled pointer passed to callback. Can be NULL. Ignored if callback is NULL.

Return Value

Returns an audio stream on success, ready to use. NULL on error; call SDL_GetError() for more information. When done with this stream, call SDL_DestroyAudioStream to free resources and close the device.


If all your app intends to do is provide a single source of PCM audio, this function allows you to do all your audio setup in a single call.

This is intended to be a clean means to migrate apps from SDL2.

This function will open an audio device, create a stream and bind it. Unlike other methods of setup, the audio device will be closed when this stream is destroyed, so the app can treat the returned SDL_AudioStream as the only object needed to manage audio playback.

Also unlike other functions, the audio device begins paused. This is to map more closely to SDL2-style behavior, and since there is no extra step here to bind a stream to begin audio flowing. The audio device should be resumed with SDL_ResumeAudioDevice(SDL_GetAudioStreamDevice(stream));

This function works with both playback and capture devices.

The spec parameter represents the app's side of the audio stream. That is, for recording audio, this will be the output format, and for playing audio, this will be the input format.

If you don't care about opening a specific audio device, you can (and probably should), use SDL_AUDIO_DEVICE_DEFAULT_OUTPUT for playback and SDL_AUDIO_DEVICE_DEFAULT_CAPTURE for recording.

One can optionally provide a callback function; if NULL, the app is expected to queue audio data for playback (or unqueue audio data if capturing). Otherwise, the callback will begin to fire once the device is unpaused.

Thread Safety

It is safe to call this function from any thread.


This function is available since SDL 3.0.0.


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