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Sierra/Dynamix sound driver hacking

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Reply 280 of 320, by HunterZ

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I haven't tried that yet, but I did notice that with a clean GOG install of the CD version, the selected sound device is used for sound effects regardless of whether CD Audio music is enabled. I think the GOG version defaults to MT-32 for audio device, which is silly (or maybe I changed it before testing?).

If you disable CD Audio music in-game with a clean GOG install, you get music from the selected sound driver.

The upside of CD Audio is you get better-than-OPL music with Sound Blaster sound effects out of the box.

Reply 281 of 320, by collector

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The preferences for the CD version have a separate switch for sound and CDA music. Without exploring it I cannot say if turning off the SB sound simply gives you no sound effects or MIDI/AdLib sound effects. I would have to re-read this thread to see if NRS or tikalat said anything about Roland sound effects.

The Sierra Help Pages -- New Sierra Game Installers -- Sierra Game Patches -- New Non-Sierra Game Installers

Reply 282 of 320, by KainXVIII

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So, for Betrayal at Krondor (GoG version) i need to copy frp.sx (and sx.ovl?) from krondor.zip (newrisingsun fix) and then sx.ovl and Sierra_patch.exe from Betrayal at Krondor - genmidi.7z, run patch, disable cd audio and i'm ready to play?

Reply 283 of 320, by MordecaiWalfish

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Do any of these patches happen to work with Quest for Glory IV?

I am playing through that again and started with MT-32 emulation, which sounded fine (and is how I originally played the game when it released), but when I got to the monastery where Igor is carving headstones in front of the adventurer's guild, the sound of him chiseling sounded like some kind of blast or explosion.

I looked into this further and saw that the Roland SC-55 general midi was a better option for this game, so I picked up the Roland Sound Canvas VA VSTi and the music sounds wonderful, except now there is no sound at all for Igor when he is chiseling the headstones (which is still better than the MT-32's messed up sound effect for it, IMO).

When playing with sound blaster sound, the sound effect is correct: like metal hitting rock. I assume there are many more sound effects that sound best when passed through to the SB16 driver instead of general midi/MT-32.

Is there any way to have the best of both worlds in this game?

Reply 284 of 320, by collector

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There is a difference between the soundDrv and audioDrv in the RESOURCE.CFG. Check your values. Also check the path values in it.

The Sierra Help Pages -- New Sierra Game Installers -- Sierra Game Patches -- New Non-Sierra Game Installers

Reply 285 of 320, by MordecaiWalfish

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my resource.cfg:

videoDrv = VGA.DRV
soundDrv = GENMIDI.DRV
audioDrv = DACBLAST.DRV
joyDrv = NO
cmd = QG4CD
mouseDrv = NONE
memoryDrv = NONE
minMemory = 1600k
brightness = 0
language = 1
minCPU = 386
CD = NO
resAUD = .\
resSFX = .\
patchDir = .\;.\patches
audiosize = 63k

I don't see anything out of place here, personally. Should I maybe try DACPRO16.DRV or SBPRO.DRV for audioDrv? Would those properly route both sound effects and voice to the sound blaster being emulated?

Reply 286 of 320, by collector

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Is the RESOURCE.SFX in the game's directory?

Also, could a mod please split this off into its own thread? It does not really have anything to do with tikalat's or NRS's drivers.

The Sierra Help Pages -- New Sierra Game Installers -- Sierra Game Patches -- New Non-Sierra Game Installers

Reply 287 of 320, by MordecaiWalfish

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Yes resource.sfx is in the game directory, and this is directly about the topic in this thread. I am wondering if any hacks for the sound drivers would work to give sound blaster sound effects in QFG4 while still using the general midi/sc-55 for music.

Reply 288 of 320, by collector

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No, none will help. Sierra drivers are not interchangeable between interpreters. Most of the modified drivers in this thread are for SCI0 or slightly later. QfG4 is SCI2 or for the CD release 2.1. DACBLAST.DRV is the driver you should be using. Sometimes you can get by with DACTHUND.DRV.

The Sierra Help Pages -- New Sierra Game Installers -- Sierra Game Patches -- New Non-Sierra Game Installers

Reply 289 of 320, by lukeman3000

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NewRisingSun wrote:
Attached find patch for Quest for Glory II. Because only two PCM sound effects are not recorded from the MT-32 (and yes, I went […]
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Attached find patch for Quest for Glory II. Because only two PCM sound effects are not recorded from the MT-32 (and yes, I went through all of them), just providing those two modified sound resources as separate files is the simplest option, certainly simpler than modifying the interpreter executable.

Also find MTBLAST.DRV for King's Quest I. Since in this game all PCM sound effects sound different from their respective MIDI data, no selectivity is needed. I got no static when knocking on the witch house door; if you still do, report.

HunterZ wrote:

How can you identify a sampled MT-32 sound versus other kind of sounds?

Play the MIDI data on your MT-32, then play the PCM sound data. If they sound the same, minus the lower sampling rate in the PCM sound data, you know that it's been sampled from the MT-32.

When I use the mtblast.drv for King's Quest I that NRS attached to that post, this is what I get.

When I use the mtblast.drv included with the King's Quest I installation of the King's Quest Collection Series (1997) Sierra Help Installer, I get this.

At one point during my testing I did hear that ear-shattering static/screeching that plays at the end of the door opening sound effect, but I haven't yet been able to replicate it since the first time it happened. I think it happened while using the mtblast.drv included with the linked sierra help installer.

And here's yet another variation of this door knocking/opening sound effect that I found on youtube. Not sure what hardware or software setup this guy is using. It's interesting that there are 6 individual knocks (as opposed to 3) and also the door sound effects seems to be cut off like in the version of mtblast.drv that NRS attached to his post here.

I'm using the most recent version of DOSBox ECE (currently r4019) with integrated Munt.

Reply 291 of 320, by lukeman3000

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NewRisingSun wrote:

What is your question?

In general, I was wondering which mtblast.drv should be considered the "best" for KQ1; I would have to assume it's the one you posted earlier, though it seems to cut the door opening sound effect off prematurely as seen in the video I posted.

I was also curious as to why the door knocks 6 times or so as seen in that YouTube video, versus only 3 times during my testing. Which one is correct?

Reply 292 of 320, by NewRisingSun

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lukeman3000 wrote:

though it seems to cut the door opening sound effect off prematurely as seen in the video I posted.

The interpreter calls the sound driver's D_STOPSND function when the "inside of the house" room is being loaded. The SierraHelp driver (which may well be an older version of my driver) ignores that call and continues to play the sound effect until the end.

The interpreter, thinking that the sound effect is no longer playing, is free to reallocate the memory region holding the sound effect data. Depending on the current memory allocation, the sound effect data may get immediately overwritten by other game data, resulting in "ear-shattering static/screeching" if the driver continues to play the sound effect when it should not.

lukeman3000 wrote:

I was also curious as to why the door knocks 6 times or so as seen in that YouTube video, versus only 3 times during my testing. Which one is correct?

The sound effect recording has three knocks. The game however sets "loop" to "2". My driver does not loop PCM samples, while Sierra's SNDBLAST.DRV does. As there is no pause after the third knock, the loop sounds bad enough for me to conclude that looping was not intended, and the "loop" value was set by mistake.

Reply 293 of 320, by lukeman3000

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NewRisingSun wrote:
The interpreter calls the sound driver's D_STOPSND function when the "inside of the house" room is being loaded. The SierraHelp […]
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lukeman3000 wrote:

though it seems to cut the door opening sound effect off prematurely as seen in the video I posted.

The interpreter calls the sound driver's D_STOPSND function when the "inside of the house" room is being loaded. The SierraHelp driver (which may well be an older version of my driver) ignores that call and continues to play the sound effect until the end.

The interpreter, thinking that the sound effect is no longer playing, is free to reallocate the memory region holding the sound effect data. Depending on the current memory allocation, the sound effect data may get immediately overwritten by other game data, resulting in "ear-shattering static/screeching" if the driver continues to play the sound effect when it should not.

lukeman3000 wrote:

I was also curious as to why the door knocks 6 times or so as seen in that YouTube video, versus only 3 times during my testing. Which one is correct?

The sound effect recording has three knocks. The game however sets "loop" to "2". My driver does not loop PCM samples, while Sierra's SNDBLAST.DRV does. As there is no pause after the third knock, the loop sounds bad enough for me to conclude that looping was not intended, and the "loop" value was set by mistake.

Interesting. Sounds like you've put a lot of thought into this, and that NRS driver is the way to go (if I value my ear drums). Thank you for the detailed explanation.

Reply 294 of 320, by NewRisingSun

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Actually, it should be considered an error in my driver that it ignores the loop field, even if I may subjectively like it that way. Attached find an updated version of driver for KQ1 that corrects this. It also corrects an error in the sample rate calculation for pre-SB16 cards when the sampling rate is below the legal limit. The "gate close" sound effect of KQ1 is specified at 3750 Hz, but the pre-SB16 method of calculating the "timing byte" will overflow if the sampling rate is below 3912 Hz.

I am not uploading a new driver for SQ3 because that game neither loops PCM sound effects nor has samples at below 3912 Hz. (Recall that my driver for SQ3 distinguishes between samples recorded from the MT-32 and those that were not.)

Attachments

  • Filename
    MTBLAST.zip
    File size
    2.19 KiB
    Downloads
    120 downloads
    File comment
    MTBLAST.DRV for KQ1SCI
    File license
    Fair use/fair dealing exception

Reply 295 of 320, by lukeman3000

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NewRisingSun wrote:

It also corrects an error in the sample rate calculation for pre-SB16 cards when the sampling rate is below the legal limit. The "gate close" sound effect of KQ1 is specified at 3750 Hz, but the pre-SB16 method of calculating the "timing byte" will overflow if the sampling rate is below 3912 Hz.

Does this mean that the door closing effect will continue playing once the player enters the room, without potentially creating a harsh sound?

Reply 298 of 320, by MusicallyInspired

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NewRisingSun wrote:

(Recall that my driver for SQ3 distinguishes between samples recorded from the MT-32 and those that were not.)

If I've never thanked you for this, THANK YOU FOR THIS!

Roland SC-55 Music Packs - Duke Nukem 3D, Doom, Hocus Pocus, Descent, and more.
Latest release: Heretic Music Pack (12/12/18)

Reply 299 of 320, by dr.zeissler

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Thx!

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