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 MKT_Gundam » 2019-3-03 @ 21:27

How bad sound the ESS allegro/maestro? Worse than live OPL3 emulation?
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Re: PCI sound cards and Chipsets from various manufacturers...

Postby appiah4 » 2019-3-03 @ 21:51

MKT_Gundam wrote:How bad sound the ESS allegro/maestro? Worse than live OPL3 emulation?


They are better than Live, but nothing to write home about.

For Allegro, check this out: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3MdfEoOtLpc
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Re: PCI sound cards and Chipsets from various manufacturers...

Postby MKT_Gundam » 2019-3-04 @ 01:17

appiah4 wrote:
MKT_Gundam wrote:How bad sound the ESS allegro/maestro? Worse than live OPL3 emulation?


They are better than Live, but nothing to write home about.

For Allegro, check this out: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3MdfEoOtLpc

At 4:44
Sounds "better" than Vortex1 (tested the same on p4 2.2GHz).
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Re: PCI sound cards and Chipsets from various manufacturers...

Postby appiah4 » 2019-3-04 @ 03:51

People go crazy about Vortex as a PCI DOS solution but aside from actually working reliably everywhere it has little else going for it from an FM quality point of view; yeah Allegro sounds better and expect Maestro to sound similar. They are still soft, emulated approximations though.
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Re: PCI sound cards and Chipsets from various manufacturers...

Postby canthearu » 2019-3-04 @ 07:41

Vortex cards are not a good match for games requiring FM synthesis.

In fact, I hesitate to call it a good PCI DOS solution. It does have wide compatibility with hardware, but is pretty average at the emulation part.
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Re: PCI sound cards and Chipsets from various manufacturers...

Postby ruthan » 2019-3-04 @ 12:34

On last Dos compatible chipsets you have expect pc speaker really only 2 options Yamahas and Vortexes, but Yamaha is working only with Emm386 and some games are requiring realmode.. For more modern games you can use external midi. Vortexes are also good for Windows 98 because of aureal3d support.
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Re: PCI sound cards and Chipsets from various manufacturers...

Postby Srandista » 2019-3-15 @ 12:46

Ok, I know that this is a bit off-topic here, but I really want to mention it somewhere, so somebody won't have to deal with this in future.

So, because of this topic, I bought ESS Solo-1 some time ago for use in my LGA775 machine with ASRock 4CoreDual-SATA2 board. I'm have dual boot on that machine, 98+XP, and of course pure DOS mode from Win 98. But I had a problem with that sound card, that no matter what I did, I wasn't able to hear any sound in Win 98. XP was working out of the box, and in pure DOS, everything was fine too. Well, it turns out, that it's a incompatibility issue with newer version of VIA VT8237S chipset on SATA2 revision of the board. Today I finally swapped the board for 775Dual-VSTA with older VT8237A chipset, which I bought recently, and everything started working immediately. I'm getting sound in DOS, XP and also in 98 now. Hopefully I will find 4CoreDual-VSTA in future, and for sure will test this on it as well. SATA2 isn't important for me in the slightest, HDDs from that time couldn't even saturate SATA1, but missing sound in 98 was real showstopper for me.
My overkill "retro" PC - ASRock 4CoreDual-VSTA, Pentium E6500K, 512MB/4GB RAM, Radeon 9500@9700 (Softmod), ESS Solo-1 + Dreamblaster X2, 80GB IDE HDD, Win 98/XP
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Re: PCI sound cards and Chipsets from various manufacturers...

Postby appiah4 » 2019-3-15 @ 13:06

Please record some DOS FM from that card for us :) Glad you got it working, Solo-1 is a great card. Cheers
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Re: PCI sound cards and Chipsets from various manufacturers...

Postby ruthan » 2019-3-15 @ 13:41

Srandista: I suppose that you tried disable sata controller if possible, or all mods included Raid mode or external disk controller.. If problem is in Win98 in theory you can try to disable some bridge devices or other devices, which couldnt be disabled on Bios level to make it working.. What about some address or IRQ conflicts? It could be there even if there is not exclamation mark, it can try to change address ranges anyway.
Because is on Windows level, it not without hope, there is quite good change that some people here would be able to help you, or Rloew have some enhanced PCI.vxd primary to help network card working, but it can help you too.

With these VIA Boards, i had problems with Sata controllers too, i had to change Sata controller mode depends on PCI-E / AGP card used.. and most stupid is that it cant be disabled.
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Re: PCI sound cards and Chipsets from various manufacturers...

Postby ruthan » 2019-5-01 @ 00:56

I was right X79 - its working with PCI soundcards!

So idea that its enough to check manual chipset block diagram, to say if it will or will not work, its probably right. X58 and X79 have same PCI slot connection within.

Im at the start of testing, but Aureal V1 is working for FX and Music in Blood setup with GA-X79-UP4 MB.
I forgot if is FM for Aureal so bad or music a bit broken.. it sound strange, fx is fully ok. I tried Yamaha 744 too, it froze at DSMA load, or maybe edge line.. but it was that black Cobra Yamaha card with which i had some strange problems before, i will test 724. So far i have headphones connected to back sound card and for testing i have be under desk.. and in machine is not retro friendly Geforce 980 TI. Tomorrow i will improve setup.. most important is that is it least somehow working, so proper research will continue.

I will not be so good as X58, because so far i saw only X79 MBs with one PCI slot.. and so no Yamaha / Aureal combo possible.. without some PCI slot multiplier solution, which is not so far proven (i dont have one, i dunno even saw some picture of them).. but X79 MBs have other advantages agains X58, so if you want to some pure DOS gaming with but machine speed is and other OSes are more important, i could be good solution, still way better than LPT2OPL..
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Re: PCI sound cards and Chipsets from various manufacturers...

Postby appiah4 » 2019-5-01 @ 16:56

Try an FM801 card on that board if it works (should) FM is much better than Vortex.
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Re: PCI sound cards and Chipsets from various manufacturers...

Postby Kamerat » 2019-5-01 @ 18:11

appiah4 wrote:Try an FM801 card on that board if it works (should) FM is much better than Vortex.

Sound Blaster PCM won't work on anything newer than the i8xx series of Intel chipsets.
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Re: PCI sound cards and Chipsets from various manufacturers...

Postby ruthan » 2019-5-01 @ 22:24

Yeah Kamerat is right, regarding of my extensive testing only Vortexes and Yamahas have chance to work. I have that small compact General midi adapter from Rayer so that bad FM for Aureal is not so bad, but have 1 and i need more of them:) Regardless, small X58 vs. X79 comparision for retro gaming is bellow.

Today worked to make XP working on X79 MB its working fine as expected, with G980Ti is probably fastest gaming machine, which i had, CPU 4820k is only quad+ht, so score in Cine Bench is 55% of my overclock X58 6 core Xeon, i didnt overclock it yet, but i dont expect miracles, i also dont have water cooler within that new machine, which i mainly bough for X79 testing.

I only made some Dos testing setup ready to go, except secondary videocard, i tried Radeon X600 but it was ignored during boot, maybe because i badly placed it do slot, maybe i killed it - i discovered that PSU was on during installation (im used that new board have some leds is there is PSU in standby, this board is clean..), i havent time to mess with it, i had to travel to other city because of work, i will continue on Sunday.

There is zillion combination to test, our matrixs still has lots of blanks, but it seems to that people are lazy.. im not even collector, i just tested some board which i have for cpu testing or i bough with some bundles or came around..

X58 vs. X79:
Image
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Re: PCI sound cards and Chipsets from various manufacturers...

Postby ruthan » 2019-5-05 @ 00:43

Some hint to new MBs and dos sound, i had lots of freezes problem with my X79, i started to worry if it will work, but i remembered that there were some disk controlelrs issues at least with EMS.. so i checked that my DOS disc are on Marwell controller, i had all 5 storage controllers Intel and Marwell in IDE mode.. but it wasnt enough after i connected all device to first intel controller (it has 4 ports its enough for DOS) and disabled others i freezes are gone and now i can play Doom 2 FX+FM with Aureal V1.
It maybe will help Yamahas too..and at least EMM386, no EMS mode is now working too.

I dunno technical details, but Rayer or other more technical guys will know, Dos counts on storage controller with specific IRQ i thing INT12 or INT13, but im not sure.
Satan bless bios profiles..

Otwervise good with X79 chipset is also that is UEFI, there are some ideas that UEFI bios is Dos sound show stopper, but its not.. yeah it booting in Legacy mode to Dos, but for other modern OSes i can use UEFI boot..
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Re: PCI sound cards and Chipsets from various manufacturers...

Postby ruthan » 2019-5-06 @ 00:51

I tested circa 10 DOS frequently played dos games which are working without any fiddling when SB is working fine.. with X79 + Aureal V1, i added collumns for it to my compatiblity sheet - where you can find details and everything working fine, only game which is not working in Dungeon Master I, were sound is working fine, when i play it with keyboard only its working fine, but when i move mouse cursor i got freeze, i have same issues with other machines, so this game probably need some patching or work around.

So only main issues are really not PS2 Y cable with my MB, with others non Gigabyte MB, it could work fine.. they can have 2 PS/2 ports or bios option for PS/2 Y cable and in comparision with X58 - only one PCI slot so not Aureal + Yamaha combo possible.

So me its nice, because there are quite fast Xeons for it up to 12 cores - for some servers which suchs for single core but there good 6 / 8 cores good enough for gaming, i original bough and though about X99 + X5960X for one of main rigs, but this dos pure sound possibility X79 would be better, CPUs are a bit slower, but possibility to use DOS is nice. If you are able to cool these 130-150W cpus silently.. it make more sense than anything else that newer Z370.. which also option to use more than 4 cores (which is obsolute, slow for me).. even on standard consumer not workstation board.. but there not Dos or Win98 friendly at all.

I will retest Yamahas with X79 in comming days.
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Re: PCI sound cards and Chipsets from various manufacturers...

Postby ruthan » 2019-5-06 @ 09:24

Ok Yamaha 724 is working too.

So only thing to solve is other than Nvidia 6xxx series cards working with this MB for DOS and Win98, because i again tried 2 radeons x600 - one form Gigabyte or Sapphire and one from HP or Dell, but i both case, card is ignored by the bios. As far as i understand these are based on Radeon 9xxx lines, so Radeon X700-X850 still can work.. Otherwise i would have to try to find if there is some Matrox PCI-E card with Windows 98 drivers, which still would has to be more compatible for DOS than Nvidias.. Other solution would be PCI-E to PCI adapter and use some PCI videocard.
Update: Regarding of Vogons wiki - https://www.vogonswiki.com/index.php/Matrox , there is not Matrox PCI-E videocard with Win98 drivers, so only Nvidia and ATI/AMD options remained.
Last edited by ruthan on 2019-5-06 @ 12:18, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: PCI sound cards and Chipsets from various manufacturers...

Postby appiah4 » 2019-5-06 @ 11:46

Does the YMF724 work well with ICH in Windows 98 or does it require PC/PCI?
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Re: PCI sound cards and Chipsets from various manufacturers...

Postby ruthan » 2019-5-06 @ 12:20

If you mean that special sound card to MB cable, its not needed, but can enhance compatibility at least for DOS, as far as i undestand it.. PCI soundcard with it behaves as ISA. but i only old MBs have it.
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Re: PCI sound cards and Chipsets from various manufacturers...

Postby Kamerat » 2019-5-14 @ 18:48

Added your X79 results to my chart, ruthan. :happy:
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Re: PCI sound cards and Chipsets from various manufacturers...

Postby appiah4 » 2019-5-14 @ 18:54

I installed and tested an FM801 card on an i815EP motherboard yesterday and it worked 100% flawlessly both in Win98 and pure DOS.
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