The AMD event is well and truly underway in Hawaii, but one of the more interesting things to arrive from the event is AMD's new TrueAudio technology. There's not many technical details on TrueAudio at the moment, but the way AMD describes it, TrueAudio would be an audio DSP built into its coming GPUs.
For as long as I can remember, PC game audio has shifted to software away from hardware, but now we're seeing a change in the opposite direction. It comes at a great time, since Windows Vista ushered in the big changes to Windows' audio stack, but moving to software isn't the best solution. We saw the hardware audio scene mostly die, with DirectSound 3D all but disappear.
New consoles (with AMD APUs) and Windows 8 is thankfully changing this, and AMD hopes to capatilize on this. AMD wants to offload audio processing to its DSP in order to take advantage of the better capabilities of task-dedicated hardware. This isn't something that is new, but it is something we haven't seen much investment in over the last decade.