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Unofficial Soundbanks for Dreamblaster X2/X3M

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Reply 60 of 65, by Dochartaigh

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dreamblaster wrote on 2020-03-19, 05:47:

The variation is a different mapping of mostly the same sounds, not a completely different soundbank.
by setting ctrl 0 to 127, and then executing a program change, it uses MT32 mapping instead of General MIDI mapping.
a special build of softmpu supports /mt32 option, which will automatically use MT32 mapping.

Thanks.

What does "setting ctrl 0 to 127" mean? I use my Dreamblaster X2 (and S2 is on the way!) very simply - I plug it into my ISA sound card, make sure the computer is setup with SET BLASTER for General MIDI at Port 330 and all that, and the games output General Midi sound. The ISA sound cards I use (usually ESS ES1868/9F) have a MPU-401? compatible Wavetable header (I believe) built into them already so I'm not using SoftMPU.

Am I doing it wrong, and would regular ISA sound cards with Wavetable header NOT have this ‘intelligent mode’, and thus NOT switch into MT32 or SC-55 mode automatically like they should unless I'm using SoftMPU? If I have to start using SoftMPU for this feature, do I have to manually turn on the 'ctrl 0 to 127' on a per-game basis to turn on and off MT32 for those MT32 games? (and likewise for SC-55 games), or is this automatic when you're running SoftMPU (i.e. SoftMPU knows which games you're loading and automatically switches to the correct mode?).

Reply 61 of 65, by dreamblaster

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Dochartaigh wrote on 2020-03-19, 16:46:

do I have to manually turn on the 'ctrl 0 to 127' on a per-game basis to turn on and off MT32 for those MT32 games? (and likewise for SC-55 games), or is this automatic when you're running SoftMPU (i.e. SoftMPU knows which games you're loading and

For MT32 modus in games, you will need softmpu. it simulates intelligent mode, which is required by many games that support mt-32, and you also need to use /MT32 option (at least support by this version : https://github.com/pdewacht/softmpu), so that softmpu uses the correct midi control value (127) to select MT-32 compatible mapping.

For SC-55, you don't need softmpu /MT32 option, as this is standard general midi mapping.

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Reply 62 of 65, by Dochartaigh

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dreamblaster wrote on 2020-03-19, 18:41:

For MT32 modus in games, you will need softmpu. it simulates intelligent mode, which is required by many games that support mt-32, and you also need to use /MT32 option (at least support by this version : https://github.com/pdewacht/softmpu), so that softmpu uses the correct midi control value (127) to select MT-32 compatible mapping.

For SC-55, you don't need softmpu /MT32 option, as this is standard general midi mapping.

I did some reading and the Github says SoftMPU is for the DREAMBLASTER S2P, which seems like it plugs into the back of a sound card, externally. My Dreamblaster X2 and S2 plug directly into the wavetable header on the card, inside of the computer – I take it those also need to still use SoftMPU?

I also looked at the 'Compatible Intelligent Mode Games' list on that same Github and it seems to be maybe 10% of the complete list of games (on Wikipedia) which can use the MT-32. So I'm assuming that I would still need to manually put the Dreamblaster into MT-32 mode to get the correct sound?

I apologize if this is simpleton type stuff... I've read a lot and watched a ton of videos... and they seem to only go into how to do things, and not the WHY or WHEN you should do things like use SoftMPU and such.... so i'm trying to find out when I should just play games normally, when I should use SoftMPU to set it to a more compatible mode (and above all a more period-correct/authentic mode), and why that determination was made.

Reply 63 of 65, by dreamblaster

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Dochartaigh wrote on 2020-03-20, 02:02:

I did some reading and the Github says SoftMPU is for the DREAMBLASTER S2P, which seems like it plugs into the back of a sound card, externally. My Dreamblaster X2 and S2 plug directly into the wavetable header on the card, inside of the computer – I take it those also need to still use SoftMPU?

S2/X2:
For games with general midi music, SoftMPU is not needed, as waveblaster cards are supported directly, usually.
Still you can use SoftMPU if you want to use MT32 mode, and/or intelligent mode, with your S2/X2.

S2P :
It will require patching with s2ppatch or SoftMPU, as no old game natively support general midi over parallel port.

Visit http://www.serdashop.com for retro sound cards, video converters, ...
OPL2LPT, OPL3LPT, X2, S2, S2P, MCE2VGA, ... many projects !
Special vogons LPT bundle : https://www.serdashop.com/Parallel-port-retro-sound-bundle
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Reply 64 of 65, by Dochartaigh

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dreamblaster wrote on 2020-03-21, 08:51:

S2/X2:
For games with general midi music, SoftMPU is not needed, as waveblaster cards are supported directly, usually.
Still you can use SoftMPU if you want to use MT32 mode, and/or intelligent mode, with your S2/X2.

Thank you again!

So there's a select number of games listed on the SoftMPU wiki, under the intelligent mode list. If I'm using the S2 or X2 on a waveblaster card header directly, I would STILL have to use SoftMPU before launching the game, otherwise the game will play SC-55 music (so it'll still have music regardless), instead of switching to the more-correct MT32 modes music, right? Is that how it works? I can certainly easily enough write batch files to so that if that's the case!

This now has me wondering... I still can't get The Secret of Monkey Island (1) working properly on my Pentium III 800MHz, Win98SE machine, even when I boot into pure MS-DOS mode. I get what seems like the hanging note bug which the ESS ES1869F isn't supposed to have. I thought it was just because my computer was too fast... but I'm now thinking SoftMPU might help with this. Would using SoftMPU to force it into intelligent MT32 mode help with this since Monkey Island was written with the MT32 in mind? (even through that game isn't listed in the intelligent mode list). (and if this is the wrong place to ask this question please disregard).

Reply 65 of 65, by dreamblaster

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Dochartaigh wrote on 2020-03-21, 23:46:

So there's a select number of games listed on the SoftMPU wiki, under the intelligent mode list. If I'm using the S2 or X2 on a waveblaster card header directly, I would STILL have to use SoftMPU before launching the game, otherwise the game will play SC-55 music (so it'll still have music regardless), instead of switching to the more-correct MT32 modes music, right? Is that how it works? I can certainly easily enough write batch files to so that if that's the case!

Yes. SoftMPU is resident so it stays active until you reboot.

Dochartaigh wrote on 2020-03-21, 23:46:

This now has me wondering... I still can't get The Secret of Monkey Island (1) working properly on my Pentium III 800MHz, Win98SE machine, even when I boot into pure MS-DOS mode. I get what seems like the hanging note bug which the ESS ES1869F isn't supposed to have. I thought it was just because my computer was too fast... but I'm now thinking SoftMPU might help with this. Would using SoftMPU to force it into intelligent MT32 mode help with this since Monkey Island was written with the MT32 in mind? (even through that game isn't listed in the intelligent mode list). (and if this is the wrong place to ask this question please disregard).

yes i think softmpu could help, in making the MT32 support work.
But in case of monkey island 1, you could also try the talkie edition, which supports general midi ! http://gratissaugen.de/ultimatetalkies/monkey1.html

Visit http://www.serdashop.com for retro sound cards, video converters, ...
OPL2LPT, OPL3LPT, X2, S2, S2P, MCE2VGA, ... many projects !
Special vogons LPT bundle : https://www.serdashop.com/Parallel-port-retro-sound-bundle
Thanks for your support !