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 Mau1wurf1977 » 2013-7-04 @ 05:40

That PC is way too fast :)

MT-32 was around when people had 286/386 PCs.
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby bjt » 2013-7-04 @ 08:51

1) Aztech 2316A chipset (Crystal 4248) with OPL3 - lockup after recognising ports.
2) Opti x924 chipset (Crystal 4231) with OPL3 clone - lockup after recognising ports.
3) ESS Audiodrive 1688F chipset - no lockup, but wouldn't recognise all ports.
4) PCI Yamaha YMF24 - lockup, but can't remember if it recognised ports.


Thanks for testing these! Looks like I may have to get hold of an ESS & Crystal-based card and see what's up.

Do you have an SB16 you could test on the same machine, just to rule out any machine-specific issues?
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby Jolaes76 » 2013-7-04 @ 09:23

j^aws,

could you please re-test at least either the Yamaha or the CS 4231 based card with L1 cache disabled ? I am also suspecting that you are having speed issues.
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby bjt » 2013-7-04 @ 22:21

Had some time for testing tonight.

These all work OK:

Companions Of Xanth
David Wolf (IRQ 2 required)
Ecargxus (tempo wrong in places, suspect this demo reprograms the RTC or uses very hi-freq interrupts)
Elvira II: Jaws of Cerberus
Linewars II
Princess Maker 2 (IRQ 2 required)
Sabre Team (intelligent MPU + SB digital FX!)

Remaining games to be tested:

A-10 Tank Killer (first version - v1.5 works without SoftMPU)
Martian Memorandum (full version - demo works without SoftMPU)
Princess Maker
Sensible Soccer
Shadoworlds
Sorcerian
Superhero League of Hoboken
Thexder II
Wonderland
Zeliard
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby Great Hierophant » 2013-7-05 @ 00:12

Was the original Princess Maker ever released for DOS?
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby j^aws » 2013-7-05 @ 01:20

Mau1wurf1977 wrote:That PC is way too fast :)

MT-32 was around when people had 286/386 PCs.


Maybe so, but I've tried a CM-64 connected to a Voyetra 24s, on much faster PCs...!

bjt wrote:
1) Aztech 2316A chipset (Crystal 4248) with OPL3 - lockup after recognising ports.
2) Opti x924 chipset (Crystal 4231) with OPL3 clone - lockup after recognising ports.
3) ESS Audiodrive 1688F chipset - no lockup, but wouldn't recognise all ports.
4) PCI Yamaha YMF24 - lockup, but can't remember if it recognised ports.


Thanks for testing these! Looks like I may have to get hold of an ESS & Crystal-based card and see what's up.

Do you have an SB16 you could test on the same machine, just to rule out any machine-specific issues?


Yeah, got a SB16 somewhere (CT1750), I could retest them all again in a few days... Got another Aztech with an Anolog Devices chipset. I'll see if I could dig that up too...

Jolaes76 wrote:j^aws,

could you please re-test at least either the Yamaha or the CS 4231 based card with L1 cache disabled ? I am also suspecting that you are having speed issues.


No probs, I'll get some time in a few days to try them again... The slowest PC I have is an unlocked P2@400Mhz that I can drop to 133MHz. I have other P2/P3s - any particular speed with L1 cache diasbaled?
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby Jolaes76 » 2013-7-05 @ 04:12

The drop to 133 Mhz alone should suffice. If not, disable L1 cache as well and you get ~a slow 386 SX.
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby bjt » 2013-7-05 @ 12:14

Was the original Princess Maker ever released for DOS?


Yes, albeit not in English.
http://www.dosbox.com/comp_list.php?showID=3309&letter=P
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby bjt » 2013-7-06 @ 20:28

Remaining games to be tested:

A-10 Tank Killer (version 1.0 only? my version works without SoftMPU)
Martian Memorandum (version 1.0 only? my version works without SoftMPU)
Thexder II (version 1.0 only? my version works without SoftMPU)
Zeliard (version 1.0 only? my version works without SoftMPU)
Princess Maker (can't find this anywhere)
Death Gate
Mechwarrior

Everything tested so far works, with the exception of It Came From The Desert. This'll be fixed in 1.2 (edit - now 1.3). Would be interested in hardware testing results too.
Last edited by bjt on 2013-7-08 @ 10:22, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby j^aws » 2013-7-07 @ 19:07

Started retesting, and got some initial results:

Mobo: 440BX (with S3 GX2 and sound card only installed)
CPU: Unlocked P2@400MHz
OS: Win98SE
Synth: Roland CM-64
SoftMPU: v1.0; SB220, IRQ5, MPU330

-----Sound card: AWE32 (CT3900)-----

- P2@133MHz, L1/L2 cache enabled:
SoftMPU fails to initialise - reports: Error, SoftMPU is already loaded.

- P2@133MHz, L1/L2 cache disabled:
SoftMPU fails to initialise - reports: Error, SoftMPU is already loaded.

- P2@400MHz, L1/L2 cache enabled:
SoftMPU initialises. Tested on Might and Magic 3, with LAPC-I option.

- P2@400MHz, L1/L2 cache disabled:
SoftMPU fails to initialise - reports: Error, SoftMPU is already loaded.

I haven't tested anything else yet, but these are strange results. I could only get the card working at 400MHz with caches enabled?! I have a batch file to setup SoftMPU, and sometimes I have to run it a few times to get it to initialise with that CPU speed. However, for the other speeds, I tried running the file dozens of times, and SoftMPU wouldn't initialise. Any ideas?

I'll test some other cards later...
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby bjt » 2013-7-07 @ 21:52

Yep, that's strange. I think we can rule out a CPU speed or sound card issue. Just to check, are you running under pure DOS, not a Win98 dos box?
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby j^aws » 2013-7-07 @ 23:47

bjt wrote:Yep, that's strange. I think we can rule out a CPU speed or sound card issue. Just to check, are you running under pure DOS, not a Win98 dos box?


Yep, running from pure DOS.

Just tested a couple more cards: SB16 (CT1750) and OPTI x924 (Crystal 4231) - identical tests as above and identical results. I'll test a few more tomorrow, Yamaha YMF724 being next...
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby Mau1wurf1977 » 2013-7-08 @ 06:16

Got some time, my Time-Machine is completed and planning on testing with the AWE64 Gold.

Now I can see It Came From The Desert, and others, seems to be hard coded to IRQ 2/9. I will test if this also affects a real MPU401 because mine is set to IRQ5 because IRQ9 is used by ACPI and for some reason when I use a PCI SATA card games probing for IRQ2/9 lock up. At least Gateway does...

Though I must say, apart from It Came From The Desert, I haven't even heard of the other titles...
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby bjt » 2013-7-08 @ 10:12

j^aws wrote:Yep, running from pure DOS.


Thanks for the info. I made a new release (1.2) this morning which will hopefully fix the problem of SoftMPU thinking it's already loaded. It's available from the usual place (http://bjt42.github.io/softmpu).

Mau1wurf1977 wrote:Got some time, my Time-Machine is completed and planning on testing with the AWE64 Gold.


Great, let us know how you get on! Yes there are a few which are hard-coded to IRQ 2. I've been able to run these with my YMF718 card configured to IRQ 9. Can't seem to configure my SB16 PnP (CT2940) to either IRQ 2 or 9 so will be interested to see if you have any luck with the AWE64.

Software testing update (list at https://github.com/bjt42/softmpu/wiki/Compatible-Games)

It Came From The Desert - not working in 1.2, fix will be in 1.3
Princess Maker - can't get hold of this anywhere
A-10 Tank Killer, Martian Memorandum, Thexder II, Zeliard, Death Gate, Mechwarrior - these all work without SoftMPU, presumed UART mode compatible. There may be an earlier version which requires intelligent mode.

Everything else works and I'm not aware of any more intelligent mode games, let me know if you find any :-)
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby Mau1wurf1977 » 2013-7-08 @ 10:32

Well I will leave the AWE64 on 220/7/1/5/330 as some games don't like a non-7 IRQ and I also want just a single card :)

The previous version wouldn't load (it would hang with keyboard input causing the PC speaker to beep after a while). So glad you released 1.2 JUST in time for my video. It's devoted to you: The one who solved what hasn't been doable for over 20 years :)
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby Mau1wurf1977 » 2013-7-09 @ 09:42

Ok I am having a hard time locating and running some of these exotic (at least for me) games:

David Wolf
Innocent Until Caught
Princess Maker 2
Ecargxus

Maybe someone can upload a working package of all these games for testing? Because otherwise I have no idea if the games actually work or if its something else...

Especially how to launch them and how to make them use MT-32. I couldn't find INSTALL.EXE or something similar for most of these.
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby bjt » 2013-7-09 @ 10:20

Ecargxus is here (it's a demo):

http://pouet.net/prod.php?which=4248

Note that although it does prompt for an IRQ on startup, I could only get it to work on IRQ 2/9. Could well be a bug in the demo. Also, the tempo is all over the place, but that happens on real hardware too according to YouTube.

The others are all hard-coded to IRQ 2/9 and don't need any special setup if I remember correctly.
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby Mau1wurf1977 » 2013-7-09 @ 10:23

Test with my AWE64 Gold so far:

Firstly you can configure it to use IRQ9

When on IRQ 9 (and SoftMPU also configured for IRQ9) Legend games work without having to specify resources. E.g. GATE MT32 works just fine.

Origin games work just fine.

With L1 Cache disabled I have noticed that Dynamix games take a very very long time to load. Heart of China or Rise of the Dragon takes several minutes, the MIDI light flashes very very slowly but eventually it completes and the game launches.

Same goes for Sierra games. SQ3 does also take a very long time with L1 Cache disabled. I take it the same would go for running it on a 386 computer.

EDIT: That demo works fine as well. Selecting IRQ2 and 330.
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby 5u3 » 2013-7-09 @ 11:24

The Ecargxus demo works fine for me on IRQ 5 (AWE32+SOFTMPU). The tempo is only very slightly off on a real 486, this seems one of the cases where a slowed-down machine doesn't work that well.

BTW, there are more MT-32 demos from the same group, but these are hardcoded to 330h/IRQ2:
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Re: SoftMPU project needs your help! (game & sound card testing)

Postby Mau1wurf1977 » 2013-7-09 @ 12:30

Attached my findings.

Everything works just fine (I tested with IRQ9 on a AWE64 Gold).

The only game I simply couldn't run at all (PC speaker, Adlib, whatever) was It Came From The Desert. Got it from the official Cinemaware site, ran the installer with DESERT.BAT /I but it simply doesn't work...

Having L2 enabled (with L1 disabled) and games transmit MIDI data at a much better speed. 3dbench score of 33.

EDIT: And when the AWE is on IRQ7, all games, apart from the hard-coded IRQ2/9 games, work just as well!
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