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First post, by Velociraptor

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I've nearly got what I think is a reasonable compromise for my P3 build. It's intended to cover DOS to WIN98SE. There will be some stuff it can't manage and for that I'll use PCem or 86box, both of which are ok for sound, particularly since I can use MUNT with them.

However for the P3 build I've gone for a SB16 CT2230 and a SB Live, and I hope perhaps to get an AWE64 legacy in the future depending on how that project turns out.

So I've been trying to puzzle out how I'll get nice MT32 and General MIDI going. I looked at a Dreamblaster which seems great for General MIDI but not so good for MT32, or at least it's good but not great.

That led me to a suggestion to do the Phil's lab project where he uses a small obsolete PC for it - what would be used as a thin client. Alternatively in a thread here I saw someone mention using a Pi for it. I think I have a Pi 2 somewhere in a box here so that might even be ideal.

Is there some kind of resource where I can find out more about the various options for doing this?

Reply 1 of 11, by kolderman

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All those options amount to the same thing - running Munt on some kind of external device, be it a PC, tablet, thin client, or Pi - and connecting it via the joystick-to-usb adapter.

You will need to run softMPU for MT32 though, which is fine, but many of use also use the awesome hardMPU or MusicQuest clones cards.

Reply 2 of 11, by Velociraptor

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>All those options amount to the same thing - running Munt on some kind of external device, be it a PC, tablet, thin client, or Pi - and connecting it via the joystick-to-usb adapter.

That's right. I'm looking for some guidance somewhere as to what the downsides are for each option. I'm sure that since it's got to do with DOS sound then there will be no good options, only compromises 😀 SFF/thin client or raspberry pi are both fine with me. Tablet or larger PC aren't suitable for my setup. I also wanted confirmation that I've come to a reasonable conclusion on this too.

>You will need to run softMPU for MT32 though, which is fine, but many of use also use the awesome hardMPU or MusicQuest clones cards.

I'm a bit lost with that too so I'm keen if someone can point me in a direction to start reading - although maybe you have by giving me those keywords to search!

Edit : That video is especially helpful and is answering lots of my questions. It's explaining what's wrong with a SB and why that card is needed. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ymQJvwOTM0E

I think I have enough now to go ahead and do some more research on my own. Thanks!

Reply 3 of 11, by Pierre32

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Just so it's clear, you don't have to buy a card like that (although it's a very cool option). SoftMPU exists so you can get Intelligent Mode on a regular sound card. The tradeoff is a small performance cost, as SoftMPU is a memory resident program (TSR).

Reply 4 of 11, by kolderman

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Software wise, all the options are the same. You have already determined that space is an issue so you need a smaller device, but you don't need our help figuring that out. And it's got nothing to do with DOS sound, and it's not much of a compromise, Munt is close to perfect. I am not sure about running on rPi as I have only run Munt on windows.

Your sound card is one of the good SB16S so it should be fine as a midi device with softMpu.

Reply 6 of 11, by Velociraptor

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So a bit more research and here's where I've got to.

I'll do the windows based device, and I'll look into what I can get for that shortly. I will use SoftMPU, the new remake cards look great and interesting etc but I will only get one if I find SoftMPU and SB16 bugs combined to be intolerable.

It is going to be emulation because buying an MT-32 is very expensive, and I'd still need an SC-55 or similar on top. The SFF/thin client PC emulating produces a very similar result.

So that's what I'll keep looking in to, and I think for now I've got some research to do rather than specific questions.

Thanks folks!

Last edited by Stiletto on 2020-06-26, 06:56. Edited 1 time in total.

Reply 7 of 11, by appiah4

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Raspberry Pi 3B + USB MIDI Interface + MUNT works perfectly for me.

Also, hold on tight, I believe @dreamblaster has a MT-32 emulation product in the works 😀

Retronautics: A digital gallery of my retro computers, hardware and projects.

Reply 8 of 11, by Velociraptor

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Just when it was looking simple! 😀

The SFF PC or a Pi isn't a huge expense and either could be re-purposed if something does come up at least.

Do you have more info on the pi option, has someone written a guide or a video etc?

Reply 9 of 11, by appiah4

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Velociraptor wrote on 2020-06-25, 07:54:

Just when it was looking simple! 😀

The SFF PC or a Pi isn't a huge expense and either could be re-purposed if something does come up at least.

Do you have more info on the pi option, has someone written a guide or a video etc?

There is a whole thread on it on Vogons, do a search for MT-32 MUNT Raspberry and you should see it (gdjacobs started it). I personally set mine up myself, though it requires some basic Linux know-how.

Retronautics: A digital gallery of my retro computers, hardware and projects.

Reply 10 of 11, by Velociraptor

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Great, half the battle is knowing what keywords to search for. I'm okish with basic linux. I'm thinking the pi is a little more tempting now, easier to pass on to another task and the hardware is identical to what others doing the same thing will be. Ta!

Reply 11 of 11, by gdjacobs

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kolderman wrote on 2020-06-24, 22:32:

You will need to run softMPU for MT32 though, which is fine, but many of use also use the awesome hardMPU or MusicQuest clones cards.

For some titles, not all of them.

Here's the thread. Probably time to get an RPi4 so I can update the instructions for newer hardware and Debian versions.
Emulating MT-32 on an RPi2

It's worth noting that with RPi4 you can purchase more onboard RAM allowing jumbo sound fonts under Timidity or Fluidsynth, although that's another topic.

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