SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Forum for discussion of bugs, code, and other aspects of SoftMPU.

Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby dr.zeissler » 2016-9-12 @ 16:58

Thx, I can see GSplay playing the Midi-Song, but I can't hear anything. Neither Internal-Speaker, or on the MT32 connected to the Joystick-Out of the Performa.
Here are some screens. https://www.flickr.com/photos/94839221@ ... 650475312/

Please let my know what you think.

Thx
Doc


PS: Keep in mind:
However, some bad news. I just read this in an Addendum to the Macintosh User's Guide (text document included in with the DOS Compatibility Installer Disk - Mac environment, version 1.0.5):
MIDI Transfers Supported on Macintosh Only
The LC 630 DOS Compatible does not have the capability of sending and receiving MIDI data through the serial port for DOS and Windows.
MIDI data does travel internally on the PC side, but when connected direct for use with a MIDI instrument, no data will transfer.
MIDI transfers are fully supported on the Macintosh side.
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby bjt » 2016-9-13 @ 10:13

OK. It seems there are two questions here.

- Does the onboard joystick port transmit MIDI from the Vibra16 MPU interface.

You don't need SoftMPU to test this. Just connect your MT-32 to the joystick port and play a song using GSPlay.

- Can the MAC's onboard serial port be used with SoftMPU's serial output mode

Please bear in mind that the serial mode is only intended for use with MIDI devices that also support PC serial MIDI (not MT-32).
So, it's not surprising that output was garbled. You could use a Roland SC-55/55MkII/88 in MT-32 compatibility mode though. Or, use MIDI thru on one of these to connect an MT-32.

Does the MAC serial port support a true MIDI baudrate (31250)?
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby dr.zeissler » 2016-9-13 @ 11:12

Thx!

1. Does the onboard joystick port transmit MIDI from the Vibra16 MPU interface.
I never heard anything with or without softmpu. So I think, no Midi-Transfer over the JoystickPort.

2. Can the MAC's onboard serial port be used with SoftMPU's serial output mode
On the Mac-Side I use Mac-Midi-Man connected to the modem-port. This works fine on the Macside!
The PC-Interface can map COM1 (PC) to Mac (Modem-Port). I can choose "normal" or "fast" mode. With both I get signals on my MT32 (over the MacMidiMan) but all sound garbage.

I think I will make (more) photos of this.
CPU: Cel - 433 MOBO: SNI-D981 RAM: 4x128MB - FDD: Dualfloppy 3,5"HD/5,25"HD - 3,5"HD - 5,25"DD an Catweasel HDD: 2x40GB - DVD
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby bjt » 2016-9-13 @ 12:24

dr.zeissler wrote:On the Mac-Side I use Mac-Midi-Man connected to the modem-port. This works fine on the Macside!
The PC-Interface can map COM1 (PC) to Mac (Modem-Port). I can choose "normal" or "fast" mode. With both I get signals on my MT32 (over the MacMidiMan) but all sound garbage.


I understand now.
In case you need to know, SoftMPU sets the serial port to 38400 baud.
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby Ozzuneoj » 2016-10-27 @ 21:37

I've been thinking about this lately and I'm a bit puzzled.

I own a Midiman MM-401, and have been using it to output to my MT-32 (old) and GM modules. In my particular situation, using an MT-32 (OLD) on a newer system (K6-2 500), it seems likely that I will run into speed related issues with my MT32 in some games. Will SoftMPU fix this problem with the /DELAYSYSEX switch?

If so, am I gaining anything at all by using the Midiman as opposed to any other MPU-401 interface? I know these cards are quite rare and pretty valuable, since they generally work well without SoftMPU, but... if SoftMPU can still improve compatibility of the Midiman, is there any reason I shouldn't just switch to using the MPU-401 interface on another card, like an AWE64 Gold or YMF719? SoftMPU seems to pass all the tests that people put it through.

On that same note, what would be the limitation of SoftMPU? What systems would it be unsuitable for? I've read that EMM386 is required, so presumably a 286 or 8088 would be too old to use it, but what about an actual 386 or 486? I'm just trying to determine if there's any reason at all to seek out intelligent MPU-401 interfaces like this Midiman card, now that SoftMPU is so good.
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby bjwil1991 » 2016-11-02 @ 04:46

Ozzuneoj wrote:I've been thinking about this lately and I'm a bit puzzled.

I own a Midiman MM-401, and have been using it to output to my MT-32 (old) and GM modules. In my particular situation, using an MT-32 (OLD) on a newer system (K6-2 500), it seems likely that I will run into speed related issues with my MT32 in some games. Will SoftMPU fix this problem with the /DELAYSYSEX switch?

If so, am I gaining anything at all by using the Midiman as opposed to any other MPU-401 interface? I know these cards are quite rare and pretty valuable, since they generally work well without SoftMPU, but... if SoftMPU can still improve compatibility of the Midiman, is there any reason I shouldn't just switch to using the MPU-401 interface on another card, like an AWE64 Gold or YMF719? SoftMPU seems to pass all the tests that people put it through.

On that same note, what would be the limitation of SoftMPU? What systems would it be unsuitable for? I've read that EMM386 is required, so presumably a 286 or 8088 would be too old to use it, but what about an actual 386 or 486? I'm just trying to determine if there's any reason at all to seek out intelligent MPU-401 interfaces like this Midiman card, now that SoftMPU is so good.

Does your MT-32 (Old) display either of these messages?

Code: Select all
Exc. Buffer Overflow
Exc. Checksum Error


If Exc. Buffer Overflow, either press Master Volume and number 4 (Overflow Assign?) 1 for yes or 2 for no, or as you suggested, run SoftMPU with the following command:

Code: Select all
softmpu /sb:220 /irq:5 /mpu:330 /delaysysex


***NOTE:*** replace the /sb /irq and /mpu with your configuration on both your sound card and MPU-401 Intelligent card

If Exc. Checksum error, either disable your cache or run a slowdown program, like MoSlo (I use MoSlo for NHL Hockey 95 and it almost works). Either that or purchase a Roland UM-ONE mkii USB MIDI adapter, install Munt onto your computer, obtain the ROM files (PCM and CONTROL) for the MT-32 and CM-32L, install the MIDI driver in Munt, plug in the cable that says "Plug into MIDI out" into the MPU-401's MIDI-OUT.

Also, keep in mind the Midiman MM-401 doesn't work with Legend Entertainment games, like Frederik Pohl's Gateway for example. I have a Music Quest PC-MIDI IH9MQ9 clone card that is 100% Roland MPU-4o1 compatible, and NHL Hockey 95 doesn't have the right instruments/notes on my MT-32 (Old) since it gives me Exc. Checksum errors across the room.
Old PC Specs:
64MB RAM, AMD K6/2-300, 200GB HDD, CD Burner; CD ROM, Yamaha TG100, SoftMPU v1.9, SB Vibra16XV ISA, STB VooDoo2 & S3 PCI, IBM 15"CRT, Compaq Keyboard, Logitech Cordless Mouse, SC-55/Munt, MS-DOS 7.10; 98SE, Abit AB-TX5
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby dr.zeissler » 2016-11-17 @ 12:08

can i use a mt32 without any soundcard?

i have a very small retro pc 486/66 that has currently only a covox and the pc-speaker.
afaik the "serial-connection" with softmpu requires a SB-Card or am I wrong here?

Thx
Doc
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby jesolo » 2016-11-17 @ 12:18

dr.zeissler wrote:can i use a mt32 without any soundcard?

Yes, you can, but then you require another device to output your sound to from the MT-32 (like amplified speakers, headphones or a standard amp).

dr.zeissler wrote:i have a very small retro pc 486/66 that has currently only a covox and the pc-speaker.
afaik the "serial-connection" with softmpu requires a SB-Card or am I wrong here?

No, it's meant to out via the serial connection of your PC. A Sound Blaster card doesn't have a serial port, but if you don't have a sound card installed, it will limit compatibility with games that require MPU interrupts.
More information on this: https://www.vogons.org/viewtopic.php?f=57&t=38238 & viewtopic.php?f=57&t=36118&hilit=softmpu&start=300#p526396 (which is a couple of posts up).
Just take note that an MT-32 doesn't have PC serial MIDI support.
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby dr.zeissler » 2016-11-17 @ 14:05

Thx, I think I need the games that require an interrupt generated by the soundcard. So if I have only one isa-slot in my 486/66.
What Soundcard should I buy if I want an very good compatiblity and running softmpu with it? SB16/AWE64/GUS/ESS/?? (No hanging notes)
CPU: Cel - 433 MOBO: SNI-D981 RAM: 4x128MB - FDD: Dualfloppy 3,5"HD/5,25"HD - 3,5"HD - 5,25"DD an Catweasel HDD: 2x40GB - DVD
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby Hellistor » 2016-12-11 @ 21:01

Hello,

Has anybody tried SoftMPU with a Terratec Maestro 32/96? The Maestro 32 is in the compatibility list but not the 32/96.

I have one in my 486 machine (see my signature) and so far it seems to be running perfectly with SoftMPU and a Roland MT-32 (OLD)

The System Specs are as follows:

Motherboard: Aopen/Acer VI15G
CPU: AMD AM486DX4 100Mhz
L2 Cache: 256KB
RAM: One 32MB Stick of 72Pin 60ns EDO RAM
I/O Controller: Goldstar VLB I/O Controller, Serial 1&2, Parallel, Gameport (Disabled), IDE, Floppy
Graphics Card: Cirrus Logic CL-GD5428 VLB Card with 1MB VRAM
Soundcard: Terratec Maestro 32/96 (SB Pro compatibility and built in High Quality Midi)
CD Drive: LiteOn CD/RW Drive
Floppy Drive A: Alps 3,5' 1,44MB Drive
Floppy Drive B: Mitsumi 5 1/4' 1,2MB Drive
Hard Drive: 4GB Western Digital (Two 2GB Partitions)
Midi Module: Roland MT-32 (OLD)

The games I have tested so far are:

Silpheed: Requires SoftMPU to be loaded, works flawlessly.
Ultima 6: Requires SoftMPU to be loaded, works flawlessly. (Needs L1 cache disabled)
Sam and Max Hit the Road: Does not require SoftMPU, works flawlessly.
Strike Commander: Requires SoftMPU to be loaded, works flawlessly. (Needs /DELAYSYSEX)
King's Quest 5: Requires SoftMPU to be loaded, works flawlessly.

I'm probably going to try some more games but it seems to work great. I'd also say it supports IRQ 2/9 since you can configure the Midi Ports to use IRQ 9 in the setup program. I have not verified that though.
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby bjt » 2016-12-12 @ 12:17

Thanks for the feedback, will update the list.
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby bjwil1991 » 2016-12-30 @ 05:15

As of now, I have a Music Quest MPU401 clone card installed in my old Win98SE/DOS gaming rig, and unfortunately, when using SoftMPU to prevent buffer overflow messages showing up on my MT-32 (Old) since some games require between a 286 and 486 CPU while using a slowdown program such as Moslo, it causes an uproar.

The major issue is running DooM v 1.9 on my computer with the music set to either GS or Sound Canvas since I have a Roland SC-55 hooked up to my computer which the game does play music, but when I run Frederik Pohl's Gateway and Gateway II: Homeworld, I don't get any music, just only sound effects, such as the dropshaft noise in Gateway. After a system restart, the problem goes away.

Is there, by any chance, the SoftMPU program can be installed/uninstalled from the residential memory using flags as follows down below?

Code: Select all
softmpu /sb:220 /irq:7 /mpu:330 /delaysysex /r
softmpu /sb:220 /irq:7 /mpu:330 /delaysysex /u


with /r as run in residential memory and /u as remove and quit from residential memory

Other than that, the program is great. Maybe it's a bug in the SoftMPU program or just me having issues. Every other game, except for NHL Hockey 95 works with both the program and my MPU401 card (NHL Hockey 95 has correct instruments at the beginning, up until the gameplay (hockey sticks hitting the ice, passing to someone or hitting the board, and the siren are either incorrect instruments, or missing, except in DOSBox). That and I might as well build a 486 DX4-100 or a 386 DX-40 (AMD only) computer for the games I have on my K6-2 system that require a processor between a 286 and 386 and the K6-2 is basically an equivalent to the Pentium 2 processors.

This is the card that does work with SoftMPU: Music Quest PC-MIDI IH9MQ9 Clone Card and every game I have works with it.
Old PC Specs:
64MB RAM, AMD K6/2-300, 200GB HDD, CD Burner; CD ROM, Yamaha TG100, SoftMPU v1.9, SB Vibra16XV ISA, STB VooDoo2 & S3 PCI, IBM 15"CRT, Compaq Keyboard, Logitech Cordless Mouse, SC-55/Munt, MS-DOS 7.10; 98SE, Abit AB-TX5
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby bjt » 2017-1-03 @ 10:21

I have no plans to add an unload feature. I see SoftMPU being loaded before games that actually need it, not in autoexec.bat. It does some fairly involved reprogramming of the RTC and PIT, not something you want in the background all the time.
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby bjwil1991 » 2017-2-08 @ 05:47

I came across an issue when running the program on my Packard Bell Pack-Mate 28 plus and when trying to play Frederik Pohl's Gateway and Gateway ][ Homeworld: the system locks up. I have an Intel i486SX2-50 installed (stock) and it's not good at all. However, the games do run without it, but output incorrect or missing instruments. Does SOFTMPU require L2 cache and a co-processor? I don't have L2 cache for the system at all since there isn't any installed, or an i486DX2-66 for that matter. Where can I find the L2 cache for the Packard Bell? The motherboard is a PB450M+

Edit: found the problem: apparently, my sound card's DMA was set to 0, not 1, and it also had an IRQ conflict with the parallel port (LPT1 uses IRQ 7). I changed the DMA on the board from 1 to 3 via jumpers, changed the sound card'stud IRQ to 5 and DMA to 1, and all is well. I also disabled the L2 cache for games that only use a 386 processor and no more.
Old PC Specs:
64MB RAM, AMD K6/2-300, 200GB HDD, CD Burner; CD ROM, Yamaha TG100, SoftMPU v1.9, SB Vibra16XV ISA, STB VooDoo2 & S3 PCI, IBM 15"CRT, Compaq Keyboard, Logitech Cordless Mouse, SC-55/Munt, MS-DOS 7.10; 98SE, Abit AB-TX5
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