Valve has updated Steam this week, adding a number of new game updates along with much-improved voice-quality for in-game chats, courtesy of the Skype-developed SILK audio codec.

In addition to adding a beta for a new campaign in Left 4 Dead 2 (called 'Cold Stream') the PC gaming developer has upgraded its voice chat tech with the SILK codec.

Shoot and chat

SILK was originally developed by VoIP specialists Skype, featuring a 'dynamic bit rate protocol' which allows the bandwidth on voice chat to vary up to 30kbps, which is twice the rate that Steam Voice previously allowed.

In addition to better quality voice chat, Valve is also promising improved connectivity and reliability with Steam Voice, outlined on the Steam website.

Skype's SILK technology will work with any game that uses the Steamworks API, which basically means the forthcoming Portal 2 just got even more exciting!

Via Steam