PCI sound cards and Chipsets from various manufacturers...

Discussion about old sound cards, MIDI devices and sound related accessories.

Re: PCI sound cards and Chipsets from various manufacturers...

Postby ruthan » 2018-10-20 @ 14:41

gdjacobs wrote:The ALS4000 is also a potential contender.


I found 2 threads:
viewtopic.php?f=46&t=28398
viewtopic.php?t=119

In both is this or similar note:
Intel i810 or later do not support Distributed DMA for legacy DMA support for PCI.
If you want SBPro function in pure DOS on Intel i8xx based motherboard, try Fortemedia FM801.
FM801's writeback DMA emulation method may work on Intel i8xx.


There is also nothing about more modern Via chipsets etc.. What i dont fully understand is in first thread was used i865 MB, but is not listed as compatible, maybe testing was in done in Windows.

It does not look hopefully.. I just need confirmation, that sound card works on some chipset in pure DOS, et least for few games, after make sense to order card and do proper testing.

Update from 1st thread:
The readme file for als4000 says that the chipsets i810 and later "do NOT work". But my system is a i865 chipset and it still works. Maybe I should drop a note to him (saka) that it works in this chipset. Maybe he can do something for faster systems, looking at the portential of this als4000 chip.
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Re: PCI sound cards and Chipsets from various manufacturers...

Postby dr.zeissler » 2018-10-20 @ 21:35

What is so special about i810/815e that the pci soundcards have problems with it? (especially the solo1, that is still my favorite)
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Re: PCI sound cards and Chipsets from various manufacturers...

Postby ruthan » 2018-10-20 @ 22:23

dr.zeissler wrote:What is so special about i810/815e that the pci soundcards have problems with it?

Its proven that is chipset problem, not just problem of one MB or manufactor etc? There are guys which actually consult datasheets.. but my uneducated guess is that it could be Intel favorite style of improvements.. just try to remove some feature.. fail and return it, in new iteration.. At one time Intel tried to push AC97 very hard and it was Win only thing and even that it would be entirely bad idea, if they make later Intel HD backwards compatible with AC97..
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Re: PCI sound cards and Chipsets from various manufacturers...

Postby dr.zeissler » 2018-10-21 @ 07:07

But that only indicates that SOME! soundengines use techniques that produce that failure.
I will try to use my DSS for that problematic games, but I will likely not be able to fix them all with that opinion.
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Re: PCI sound cards and Chipsets from various manufacturers...

Postby ruthan » 2018-10-21 @ 17:18

I would say its not lucky combination of hw. soundengines are fine but hardware or driver is unable to process it, if card is working fine with other OS, MB and Sc are fine, but not together for Dos.
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Re: PCI sound cards and Chipsets from various manufacturers...

Postby ruthan » 2018-10-28 @ 01:15

I have small request:
Could someone pleas check how much memory ESS Solo-1 drivers using, i need it for comparation table and im lazy to install card again.

If have ForteMedia FM801 on the way, so if someone have proven DOS drivers, pleas share them, i checked Vogons drivers library but i didnt find them.
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Re: PCI sound cards and Chipsets from various manufacturers...

Postby Kamerat » 2018-10-28 @ 20:26

Here you go Ruthan, file in bottom of post.


Here is some of my findings about some of the sound chipsets mentioned here lately.

ALS4000
Pros:
Sound Blaster 16 support
Works on later VIA chipsets in DDMA mode
Works at least up to the SiS 645DX+962UA chipset in DDMA mode
FM very true to OPL3

Cons:
Noisy, especially the FM part
The other DMA modes (WBDMA and WSDMA) are really unstable, so no use for this card on ICH chipsets


FM801-AU
Pros:
Works on ICH chipset up to ICH5 in "legacy mode 2" as the initializer calls it
Works on later VIA, SiS and ULi chipsets in "legacy mode 1/2"
Clean output
SPDIF output that works in DOS
Good sounding FM, but not totally true to OPL3

Cons:
Problems getting the right sample rate when playing back PCM
Stability issues when using the MPU-401 interface in Duke Nukem 3D


Trident 4DWave-NX
Pros:
Sound Blaster 16 support
Works on later VIA chipsets in Tridents own TSR-less DMA mode
Clean output

Cons:
Awful FM emulation by TSR
Does not work on ICH chipsets without a PC/PCI connection
Needs the TSR loaded for setting the right sample rate during PCM playback (can be set manually with 3rd pary tool)
Broken wavetable part that also need TSR
MPU-401 interface does not work together with PCM playback, also need modifying PCI registers
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Re: PCI sound cards and Chipsets from various manufacturers...

Postby ruthan » 2018-10-28 @ 21:48

Kamerat, thanks very much, for driver and info.

I once more checked your table, it was still too cryptic to me, im not fluent in all VIA and SIS chipset, so i have to check exact MBs for which socket are using etc.. i thing that lots of people would have similar problems.

In your table is still lots of blank cells, but in your text above seems to be info which can fill them, it could safe lots of disappointment for people which plan to order new cards some of them are not cheap in these days and it would probably getting even worse.
I dont have such collection, i even dont plan to have it, my aim is bigger collection of games testing on newer boards.

For me new discovery are SIS 775 MBs, i dont know that SIS did s775 board, example is your listed (maybe there even some better MB with this chipset, i did not try to search):
https://www.asus.com/Motherboards/P5SD2 ... fications/
Regarding of you table, they are compatible at least with Yamahas, Creative ES1370 and Avance Logic + Fortemedia FM 801, so its nice idea if someone could do deeper compatibility testing.
On MB level feature are here - support for quite modern Core 2 Duos up to Core 2 Duo E8300 officially. DDR2 667 - 4 GB. 1x PCIe long, 2x PCI-e short - good for sata controller, nic etc, 4 x PCI it should enough for everyone. 2x Sata 3 Gb/s, Realtek HD for modern OSes.

Update: Additional question, can use of General midi instead of Sound blaster FM music fix compatibility problems with some not working games and vice versa can it add some more crashes, what is experience? Maybe would make sense retest some not working games also with SB Live which has inbuild General Midi..
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Re: PCI sound cards and Chipsets from various manufacturers...

Postby ruthan » 2018-10-29 @ 23:40

I added column with Sound engines info:
https://docs.zoho.com/sheet/published.d ... &mode=html

I used this Bristlehog thread for info and just got through all my games files to find specific files, Miles AIL 2/3 have engine name in *.dig files header.

In my game mix they are really only 2 main players - HMI Sound operation System (recognizable by *386 files) and Miles AIL2 and AIL3, before this research i didnt expect that so much games using use sound engine middleware and that some of them are so major. There others with few hits, Lucas Arts iMuse, ID Softs DMX and older ID soft engine, Apogee SS (Duke3D) but far from be so used.

Note sound engine is not only thing which make game compatible or not compatible, i cant got screwed by implementation.

I can fill some empty cells with info let me now.
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Re: PCI sound cards and Chipsets from various manufacturers...

Postby ruthan » 2018-11-03 @ 05:08

I finished Yamaha 744 + i865 testing, tried everything - multiple cards, slots, videocards, all the modes.. but compatibility is a bit disappointment 76% vs 85% with ICH10, true is that there is 5 problematic games difference in test suite, which i added after ICH10 + Yamaha 744 testing, so results after that would be probably 76% vs 83% or something like that, but there is still difference, i expected same or even better results than with ICH10.

I often hit some strange DOS4GW error 2001 error durring game executions (see picture), which is there in both EMS/ NOEMS mode when is Yamaha drivers are loaded, even when game is started in no sound mode, its some strange conflict i dunno what to do with it.. When i started game in realmode or in EMS/ NOEMS without loaded Yamaha drivers, game is running.
Yamaha744+i865-DOS4GW.jpg


I used Kamerats nice sheet once more.. There you can see that even some old chipset and Socket / Super socket 7 MB or Slot 1 MBs, have some issues with PCI sound cards, so its such big suprise that some newer mbs with working with some PCI sound cards better than some older.

I also completed testing suite with all free games, demos and shareware version in my suite just ready to be executed, all installations are done, some werent straight-forward, they had multiple extractions, hardcode patches or dependency of files in installation folders etc.. i cleaned up all this mess and made nice package. Problem is that i need hosting for it - it has 750 MB packaged on ultra level with 7zip, so if someone have some FTP server which could be used, write me PM, i can make testing for others more easier or it quite good package to just test overall machine DOS compatibility too..

I have Fortmedia FM801 at post office, i would test some basic compatibility if it work at all and only if results would be exceptionally good i would retest more games, but its closed for weekend. I think that we now need more to fill Kamerats matrix with data, if some combinations of sound cards and chipsets are working at all, for most modern chipset we probably did what was possible.. and without some breakthrough info is not too much else to do. Where i feel some space for improvement is some googling about not working games in my list, i tested a lot, but i did not have time to google problems with most of games, if there are some unofficial patches / tricks etc.. We probably can squeeze other few % by this.
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Re: PCI sound cards and Chipsets from various manufacturers...

Postby ruthan » 2018-11-07 @ 06:21

Fortmedia FM801 installation is problematic, first of all DOS installation package still needs to be extracted in Windows and after i can install it on my VIA machine, because of classic runtime R6003 and R6002 too fast machines errors. I tried setmul for slowdown its not working.
I tried bypass by Dosbox, but i get that chip is not find message and it virtual machine it even dont like my MS-DOS 7.1 command.com..

Could someone pleas share installed drivers directory and autoexec / config lines? In readme is nothing about IRQ etc setting and executables dont give any useful info with /? parameters.

Avance Logic card on the way, so im missing now i only Yamaha 724, where i waiting for cheap specimen..
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Re: PCI sound cards and Chipsets from various manufacturers...

Postby ruthan » 2018-11-07 @ 11:48

Ok i just managed to get it working with VIA 880 (Core 2), just by executing, DOS801.EXE and CFG801.EXE after, but i would still appreciate these lines for IRQ etc adjustment and volume levels adjustment, because there some cfg files for that.

Its working well, music and FX with Doom II / Quake / Q2DOS / Blood / Golden Axe / Dungeon Keeper, nice and clean, only a bit silent. Other fine thing is that its working in realmode.

BTW managed someone fix ProMixer for faster machines, it give me runtime error 200, but classic fixers of this problem seems to na work. I never used it but its in Kamerats sheet so it good thing.

Update: With i865 its working too, but it was already reported, here installation was fine, i guess that missing FPU is some VIA bug, because saw it with Terminator too, CPU on i865 its faster. I found out that IRQ5 settings is Dosgame.cfg file, which is fill during installation, but i still wonder about volume mixer values, its silent too - i dunno on which scale is set, only see that MasterVolume is set to 0.
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Re: PCI sound cards and Chipsets from various manufacturers...

Postby appiah4 » 2018-11-07 @ 13:57

Can you make some recordings of the FM801 for FM music? I would love to hear its OPL3 clone in games.

Doom E1M1, Doom 2 MAP01, Dune (Arrakeen Palace), Descent (Menu), System Shock etc would be AWESOME.
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Re: PCI sound cards and Chipsets from various manufacturers...

Postby ruthan » 2018-11-07 @ 14:09

I can go it during weekend, but i hope that someone more skilled will do it, because i can just record it on phone.. or just use jack extender + jack female to male if find it and connect it to integrated Realtek HD a record it by Audacity, nothing fancy, i have basic card without digital output.
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Re: PCI sound cards and Chipsets from various manufacturers...

Postby ruthan » 2018-11-07 @ 19:56

I had not too much time to test it, but at least Media Forte FM is working with Blood setup on X58 chipset, i will probably test it more during weekend.

Otherwise here is want dosgame.cfg file contains after installation:
Code: Select all
[Config]
PushBtn=1
BaseAddr=220
IRQ=5
DMA=1


Here are volume file, which i need to modify to increase basic volume.. i dont understand that 0c0c format and scale which value is maximal for others,. :
Code: Select all
[VOLCFG]
MasVol=0
PcmVol=0c0c
FmVol=0c0c
SurVol=0


I guess that it generated by some Win 9x utility, i would be nice someone with this card just can set in Windows all volumes to max and send me this file.

BTW is there some universal midi splitter standard for parallel general midi connection / joystick connection or this need some special support on sound card side and if yes, could someone add this info for cards in Kamerats sheets?
Last edited by ruthan on 2018-11-08 @ 18:05, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: PCI sound cards and Chipsets from various manufacturers...

Postby dr.zeissler » 2018-11-07 @ 20:46

Did anyone test the solo1 in a nforce2 ?
CPU: PII 133-333 MOBO: SNI-D981 RAM: 512- FDD: Dualfloppy 3,5"HD/5,25"HD - 3,5"HD - 5,25"DD ISA-Catweasel HDD: 2x40GB - DVD
ISA(3): Audician32-S2Dreamblaster - GusACE PCI(3): Monster3D- Intel NW AGP(1): 3dfx V3-3000
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Re: PCI sound cards and Chipsets from various manufacturers...

Postby ruthan » 2018-11-08 @ 02:27

dr.zeissler wrote:Did anyone test the solo1 in a nforce2 ?

First post saying this -
No matter what I do, all nVidia nForce chipsets, including current ones like nForce 720D (MCP78), would only play FM music on those PCI sound cards. SFX cannot be played, and sometimes the games would crash if it ever tries to play SFX.

But in our sheet is that at least Yamaha is working with nForce4 Ultra socket 939, nothing else was tested, but to be honest Yamaha is working with almost anything. My personal guess is that it will not work exceptionally well.

Otherwise if is someone able to fill blanks in sheet above pleas do it, you can write comment to every cell, we can add other chipsets too.
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Re: PCI sound cards and Chipsets from various manufacturers...

Postby dr.zeissler » 2018-11-08 @ 05:58

I ordered a SN45Gv2 and I will checkout PCI-SoundCard as well as XP-M.
CPU: PII 133-333 MOBO: SNI-D981 RAM: 512- FDD: Dualfloppy 3,5"HD/5,25"HD - 3,5"HD - 5,25"DD ISA-Catweasel HDD: 2x40GB - DVD
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Re: PCI sound cards and Chipsets from various manufacturers...

Postby dr.zeissler » 2018-11-08 @ 07:25

What Chipset should I go for, if I really like Dos FM/SFX with a PCI-Soundcard?
Attachments
Chipset3.jpg
Chipset2.jpg
Chipset.jpg
Last edited by dr.zeissler on 2018-11-08 @ 07:42, edited 1 time in total.
CPU: PII 133-333 MOBO: SNI-D981 RAM: 512- FDD: Dualfloppy 3,5"HD/5,25"HD - 3,5"HD - 5,25"DD ISA-Catweasel HDD: 2x40GB - DVD
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Re: PCI sound cards and Chipsets from various manufacturers...

Postby Kamerat » 2018-11-08 @ 07:35

dr.zeissler wrote:What Chipset should I go for, if I really like Dos FM/SFX with a PCI-Soundcard?

VIA chipset ones for ESS Solo-1 and ALS4000.
SiS chipset one for Yamaha YMF7x4 and ALS4000.

If you want a TSR less experience and good game compatibility.
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