Best Sensaura Implementation

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

Re: Best Sensaura Implementation

Postby swaaye » 2018-4-15 @ 22:13

Thanks for stopping by ZanQuance. :)
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Re: Best Sensaura Implementation

Postby keropi » 2018-4-15 @ 23:34

I remember there is a Sensaura tab on the Yamaha WF192XG driver, is that any good?
I also have a terratec was canyon3d card - never actually tested it tbh as I tend to stick with live/audigy cards, maybe I should reconsider?
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Re: Best Sensaura Implementation

Postby Gahhhrrrlic » 2018-4-16 @ 17:09

If only I had more PCI slots... now I have 3 cards I feel I must have in my system: An SB Live SB0100 (because it has the best normal sound quality and compatibility with everything), an SQ2500 (cuz A3D 2.0, nuff said) and a Santa Cruz (because their HRTF is better). Originally I was planning on just having 2 cards installed, and if I was confident that the Santa Cruz could replace the Live, I might put it with the SQ2500 but something tells me, the Live is still better for EAX and any kind of non-A3D sound... correct me if I'm wrong.

One other thing I don't get. It was mentioned that for proper HL detection you need one version of the dll BUT for proper A3D 2.0 features you need a different version. Since HL supports 2.0, which driver should I use then, for a Sensaura card? I want HL to detect it properly but also to use the full feature set.

You know, I'm slightly annoyed that wile graphics cards have turned into 10 pound heat pipe behemoths that are more powerful than the rest of the computer they are attached to, sound cards fizzled out and died. Human beings have 2 important senses that come into play with video games: Vision and hearing. Vision is all taken care of. Sound has been sorely neglected. What Creative ought to be doing now is conducting full blown FEA, on-chip, hardware accelerated, using architecture and object data from the game. This is totally doable, and would make sound cards develop in a similar vein to graphics cards, with realistic real-time 3D sound. Basically this is a huge amount of untouched potential IMO.

I understand why graphics card have to be more powerful. Vision is 2D data that has many elements that inflate bandwidth such as color, refresh, and a ton of post-processing effects. Sound can be produced by a 1-dimensional diaphragm so it already has at least an order of magnitude less complexity to it. The post-processing effects that have been implemented are fewer in number than their graphical counterparts and do not include complex 3D simulation so it's no wonder you don't even need a heatsink on a sound card. But FEA is really intensive and would be very demanding of hardware that is now cheaply and readily available. Good bang for the buck I think.
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Re: Best Sensaura Implementation

Postby ZanQuance » 2018-4-16 @ 19:03

swaaye wrote:Thanks for stopping by ZanQuance. :)

*waves* :)

Gahhhrrrlic wrote:One other thing I don't get. It was mentioned that for proper HL detection you need one version of the dll BUT for proper A3D 2.0 features you need a different version. Since HL supports 2.0, which driver should I use then, for a Sensaura card? I want HL to detect it properly but also to use the full feature set.

Drop the attached sensaura_a3d files into the HL directory and leave the windows\system\a3d.dll and A3DAPI.dll the default Aureal installed ones.
The game will parse it's install directory first for the files and load them for The Santa Cruz + Sensaura, and if you use the Vortex2 it will still work properly.
Do the same for other games you want mixed support for both cards without worrying about DLL swapping mahem.
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Re: Best Sensaura Implementation

Postby swaaye » 2018-4-17 @ 04:35

Split sound card industry discussion to
viewtopic.php?f=5&t=59717
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Re: Best Sensaura Implementation

Postby Gahhhrrrlic » 2018-4-17 @ 13:51

Ok so I broke down and bought a damn card. I couldn't pass up the benefits of better HRTF for games like Thief (which incidentally I have never played). I'm also determined to get Halo working on a 450 MHz machine, just for the sound lol.
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Re: Best Sensaura Implementation

Postby Gahhhrrrlic » 2018-4-17 @ 16:18

Gahhhrrrlic wrote:1 last question which I would really like to know is what happened to a3d support for dark engine games (System Shock 2 for example). The dll files are there, the support is supposedly there but with all the modern day reconstruction of the game files, nobody talks about a3d support anymore since OpenAl now seems to fill that gap but I have always wanted to know if I could play ss2 on an a3d card and get that positional sound.


I have read sources that say both that A3D is not supported and those that say it is. I also found this, which may be of use to anyone interested:

https://forums.eu.square-enix.com/showt ... hp?t=82491
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Re: Best Sensaura Implementation

Postby squiggly » 2018-4-17 @ 20:01

Gahhhrrrlic wrote:If only I had more PCI slots... now I have 3 cards I feel I must have in my system: An SB Live SB0100 (because it has the best normal sound quality and compatibility with everything), an SQ2500 (cuz A3D 2.0, nuff said) and a Santa Cruz (because their HRTF is better). Originally I was planning on just having 2 cards installed, and if I was confident that the Santa Cruz could replace the Live, I might put it with the SQ2500 but something tells me, the Live is still better for EAX and any kind of non-A3D sound... correct me if I'm wrong.


Ah, the good old late-90s sound card multiplication factor :)

I have a number of retro rigs hooked up through a KVM into some Creative T30 stereo speakers, including ones with a Live!, MX300(A3D2), and an Audigy2. It sounds beautiful.

But I am thinking of standing up a completely separate rig with a Hercules Game Theater XP and an Altec Lansing 4.1 speaker system for Sensaura and HRTF, as I understand it excels with actual 4-speaker surround setups.

I have never been so excited to re-play Half Life before!
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Re: Best Sensaura Implementation

Postby ZanQuance » 2018-4-17 @ 21:03

Gahhhrrrlic wrote:
Gahhhrrrlic wrote:1 last question which I would really like to know is what happened to a3d support for dark engine games (System Shock 2 for example). The dll files are there, the support is supposedly there but with all the modern day reconstruction of the game files, nobody talks about a3d support anymore since OpenAl now seems to fill that gap but I have always wanted to know if I could play ss2 on an a3d card and get that positional sound.

I have read sources that say both that A3D is not supported and those that say it is. I also found this, which may be of use to anyone interested:
https://forums.eu.square-enix.com/showt ... hp?t=82491

A3D does not work on the OpenAL patched versions of SS2, run the original older version for A3D support. The A3D->DX5 wrapper was provided by creative for the X-FI cards and doesn't sound correct.

squiggly wrote:I have never been so excited to re-play Half Life before!

It's pretty sweet on Sensaura, definitely worth a replay.
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Re: Best Sensaura Implementation

Postby Gahhhrrrlic » 2018-4-17 @ 22:25

Do you recommend headphones or a 5.1 system? I usually find headphones to be superior because of closed ear, snr being higher, etc. but in this case... 4 channel 3D might trump?

For dark games, are you saying the a3d files included with the game are wrapper crap and I should replace them with real dlls of a particular version?
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Re: Best Sensaura Implementation

Postby squiggly » 2018-4-17 @ 22:59

Gahhhrrrlic wrote:Do you recommend headphones or a 5.1 system? I usually find headphones to be superior because of closed ear, snr being higher, etc. but in this case... 4 channel 3D might trump?


A3D2 is specifically intended for headphones. Although I don't use them personally and I find it works fine.

Sensaura seems to be better with 4 discrete channels, i.e. proper surround sound, but I have yet to try it myself.
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Re: Best Sensaura Implementation

Postby swaaye » 2018-4-18 @ 03:28

I'm using Santa Cruz drivers 4193 with XP and tried Half Life GOTY (1.0.0.9). Getting a lot of sound effects cutting off. I tried with the A3D,A3DAPI and Audio3D dlls from the archive in the thread, and tried A3DAPI 3.12, and also tried using the system-installed A3D.dll and Audio3D.dll. All sounded the same. Hmmm. Positioning sounds ok but lots of sound effects cut off abruptly.
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Re: Best Sensaura Implementation

Postby ZanQuance » 2018-4-18 @ 03:36

I found the WDM drivers don't work so well, Win98 and the VXD ones are the way to go, just like with the Vortex 2. Also Chaotic Wavetracing will only work with the VXD drivers.
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Re: Best Sensaura Implementation

Postby swaaye » 2018-4-18 @ 03:43

Nevermind. lol I just realized I'm not using the Santa Cruz in this PC. It's the Philips Seismic Edge! Sigh. I have two builds I'm playing around with.

But I didn't know the WDM drivers were limited. That's a bummer.

This also establishes that the Seismic Edge has some issues with its A3D emulation. SiN sounds alright but Half Life doesn't. A3DAPI 3.12 worked best with SiN.
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Re: Best Sensaura Implementation

Postby ZanQuance » 2018-4-18 @ 03:56

Also sometimes the Chaotic WaveTracing doesn't kick in, so do a
s_disable_a3d
then a
s_enable_a3d
and it should get going again.
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Re: Best Sensaura Implementation

Postby swaaye » 2018-4-18 @ 04:05

I will have to install 98SE on that machine sometime.
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Re: Best Sensaura Implementation

Postby Gahhhrrrlic » 2018-4-18 @ 04:10

ZanQuance wrote:Also sometimes the Chaotic WaveTracing doesn't kick in, so do a
s_disable_a3d
then a
s_enable_a3d
and it should get going again.


I can't wait to get my card. I'm losing bladder control. Why can't time go backwards so I can stay in the 90s forever?

Maybe if I can hit 88 MPH on the way to work tomorrow...
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Re: Best Sensaura Implementation

Postby swaaye » 2018-4-19 @ 18:33

I picked up a Game Theater XP. Anyone have experience with the drivers? I managed to collect all released versions from the Hercules FTP. But I'm not sure any other than the oldest is VXD.

I need to get a 1/4" to 3.5mm stereo plug adapter because apparently I have none and that's the only way to plug in and get headphone mode on the box.
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Re: Best Sensaura Implementation

Postby squiggly » 2018-4-19 @ 22:16

swaaye wrote:I picked up a Game Theater XP. Anyone have experience with the drivers? I managed to collect all released versions from the Hercules FTP. But I'm not sure any other than the oldest is VXD.


I also have one on the way, please keep posting your experiences with it, especially which drivers work well under Win98.
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Re: Best Sensaura Implementation

Postby swaaye » 2018-4-24 @ 20:11

I've been playing with the Game Theater XP a bit. I'm using headphones. The Santa Cruz picked up some EMI noise from the system but the GTXP and its external box doesn't seem to. Very nice. The oldest drivers are VXD (v 2.xx) and seem to be the same version as the Santa Cruz VXD drivers. Seems to work well for Half Life.

Driver downloads
http://www.filewatcher.com/b/ftp/ftp.he ... TXP-0.html
http://www.filewatcher.com/b/ftp/ftp.he ... rds-0.html

Is there some way to actually test what features of Sensaura are working? Is there an A3D test utility? I remember Aureal had something called Minerva but I've never found it for download.
Attachments
relnotes.rtf
driver release notes compilation I made
(11.67 KiB) Downloaded 12 times
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