My sound-machine retro build.

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

Re: My sound-machine retro build.

Postby Beegle » 2017-7-01 @ 01:38

That multi-soundcard build is amazing :) Good work!
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Re: My sound-machine retro build.

Postby 640K!enough » 2017-7-07 @ 01:33

Batyra wrote:
oeuvre wrote:Hey, you sure you got enough sound cards in there?


I'm sure for now I don't have enough free ISA slots :dead:
That's why I have to go further with this "have-more-ISA" motherboard...

Why not try to find an ISA bus extender, if you want even more slots? :wink:
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Re: My sound-machine retro build.

Postby gdjacobs » 2017-7-07 @ 05:05

Batyra wrote:Thanks guys!
@lvader - for newer cards like SW1000 and AWE64Gold I building second machine... so one will be for dos and win95 gaming and second for newer stuff.


Oh. and one more... right now I'm waiting for Korg NX5R to connect it to this build by "Pass tru" on Roland... and maybe yamaha MU80 will be next in line.


Speaking of interesting synthesizers, did Kurzweil ever release a MIDI module featuring the same voice set as in the HOMAC daughterboard?
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Re: My sound-machine retro build.

Postby Batyra » 2017-7-09 @ 19:30

Unfortunately don't know that much of midi modules, and I don't have HOMAC (I wish I had)...
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Re: My sound-machine retro build.

Postby Batyra » 2017-7-14 @ 11:35

OK, I decided to go even further to mahe some porno-sound-build...
I changed motherboard from GA-586ATX to DFI G7VP2 an industrial motherboard (super socket 7) with only two PCI but... with 6x ISA.

This build looks like this:
1. AWE32 CT3900 + 2x16MB (changed from CT2760)
2. WaveBlaster I daughterboard (connected to AWE32) (port 300)
3. Ensoniq Soundscape Elite (port 340)
4. Yamaha SW60 (port 320)
5. Gravis Ultrasound MAX 2.1 (changed from ACE 1.1)
6. Roland MPU-401AT
7. Dreamblaster X2 daughterboard (connected to MPU-401AT) (changed from original SCB-7 due to SC55-mkII connected already)
8. Roland Sound Canvas SC55-mkII MIDI module (connected to MPU-401AT) (Doom sounds great in GM mode, Monkey Island in MT-32 mode initialized)
9. Korg NX5R MIDI module (connected to Roland SC55-mkII)
10. Korg Ai20 daughterboard (inside Korg NX5X in stead of Yamaha DB51 - it sounds too similar to SW60)...

Previously I had four PCI slots and I used two Voodoo II (Gainward Dragon 3000 12MB) in SLI connected to Tseng ET6000.
Now I have only two PCI slotst and only in one longer cardcan be mouted so I decided to also find something interesting and I used Tseng ET6000 with Miro Highcore3D 6MB Voodoo I.

Of course all works without conflicts !!!
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BATYRA_sound-machine-IIB.jpg
Batyra Sound Machine IIB
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Re: My sound-machine retro build.

Postby Niezgodka » 2017-7-17 @ 02:53

Speaking of that, what is the best way to connect GUS + AW64 +LAPC-I at once? How to configure it in Autoexec/config.sys?
Is there a way to connect them together, like batyra did?
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Re: My sound-machine retro build.

Postby PARUS » 2017-8-11 @ 06:34

Batyra
3 - A lot of DOS games can't work with GM IO values 310, 340, 350, 360. Only 300, 320, 330.
5 - Why MAX? It's more hungry for resources than ACE and has mixer, therefore more noisy.
6, 8 - The loveliness of MPU-401AT is intelligent mode. Rloand SC-55 can be connected to any gameport of any sound card with UART mode. If you have MPU-401AT you must have MT-32/CM32. Without MT-32 it is idle toy.
1, 2, 4, 7, 9, 10 - good!
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Re: My sound-machine retro build.

Postby PARUS » 2017-8-11 @ 06:39

And for best sound quality connecting analog lines to each other is not good idea. Fine analog mixer is needed!
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Re: My sound-machine retro build.

Postby Batyra » 2017-8-11 @ 07:25

@PARUS - thanks for suggestions.

This build is rather an experiment evolving trough time. So I'm testing many different combination from cards I currently own to find solution that is most satisfying for my purposes.

3 - so far the only problem would be Ensoniq on 340 - but I have not find problem with it yet. But this is not made to play in all the games. There are not as many games with native Ensoniq suport I have.
4 - you are tottaly right. MAX is just more problematic with configuration than ACE - I just wanted to try if I will make it - and I did :). Normally I'm using ACE.
6,8 - I dont have MT-32 (yet)... :( here you are also right but if I'll connect Rikand SC-55 to any other card - like for example Ensoniq I'm have to set up separetely if I;m useing Ensoniq or external MIDI - cant use both by selecting port... And MPU is working allways.
1,2,4,... :-D

About better cound quality - I realize that mixer is "must have" - but I didn't own at the time - it has changed :)

OK so my next attempt of "playing" with build.
BATYRA_build_11-08.jpg
Batyra Build 11-08-2017


This time the specs are:
- Roland LAPC-I (default at 330)
- AWE32 CT2760 (I just love it) with Terratec Wave X Table 16MB (on 300)
- Gravis Ultrasound ACE 1.1
- Roland MPU-401AT (on 320) with Yamaha DB50 connected to it.

There are also three midi modules connected to MPU-401 - all playing simultaneously so I have a 4 port switch. 3 in's for modules and 4th for DB50 that is on MPU-401
As you can see I have a mixer now. So the midi modules are connected to mixer, AWE is connected to Gravis - and GUS goes to mixer (have'nt tried to connect tchem separately to mixer)

I'm useing LAPC for listening to monkey Island or Flashback and MPU-401 to listen to DOOM on roland modules od Duke on Yamaha DB...

Think I'll try to go pack to my 6 ISA DFI socket 7 motherboard because I just miss Ensoniq here, and in this case I could aso add Turtle Beach maui with another wavetable card connected to it...
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Re: My sound-machine retro build.

Postby PARUS » 2017-8-11 @ 13:50

ISA has not slots quantity limitation. Always! You can use ISA riser on any motherboard with ISA bus. I advise to find one-sided riser about 4-5 slots and plug it into bottom ISA slot. But you need a custom case. On the other hand you will not think about mobo choice, just take any favorite. I made exactly so.
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Re: My sound-machine retro build.

Postby PARUS » 2017-8-11 @ 14:06

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Elonex-VL5IDE-1 ... Sw5dNWmiqS - excellent choice! Just cut off VLB-part.
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Re: My sound-machine retro build.

Postby Batyra » 2017-8-11 @ 17:45

PARUS wrote:ISA has not slots quantity limitation. Always!


Didn't know that... That is nice!

As I told, I have a super socket 7 6xISA industrial mobo but I think that more than 6 cards will use all resources anyway...
About this raiser - does it need vlb? or without vlb only isa will work?
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Re: My sound-machine retro build.

Postby PARUS » 2017-8-11 @ 18:52

Of course it will work! I have bought three another risers on ebay, the PISA/EISA risers. Like this: http://www.ebay.com/itm/PACKARD-BELL-RI ... SwiA9ZZrdu But this one has only three ISA slots, my risers have 4/5 ISA slots. Their connector to bus has original location of ISA contacts. I have cut external second contacts line which doesn't relate to ISA. I did it exactly to restore original shape of ISA connector. And they all work!
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Re: My sound-machine retro build.

Postby Batyra » 2017-10-20 @ 16:20

Post update.
As you can see there are some more midi modules (Yamaha mu100 and Casio GZ-50)...
This time I focused not on numer of standards or different cards but on 8bit and value :)
- Roland LAPAC-I
- Roland SCM-10AT (MPU-401AT + SC-7 daughterboard) - this is also connected to midi modules.
- AdLib Gold 1000

Batyra_Build_Oct17.jpg
Batyra Build October 2017


I also could add one more card like RAP-10 or any GUS... but this time I decided to leave one empty socket...

Rest of the build:
- Tseng ET6100 by Surf Media
- Gigabyte GA-586ATX
- Cyrix MII 333
- 2x 64 MB 72pin SIMM
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Re: My sound-machine retro build.

Postby the Goat » 2017-10-20 @ 22:43

Very impressive. I think you should get an external mixer instead of daisy chaining the sound through every card.

Batyra wrote:1. AWE32 CT2760 + 28MB + WaveBlaster I CT1900 = Port 300, IRQ 5
2. Ensoniq Soundscape Elite connected via game port to Roland SC-55mkII = Port 330, IRQ 2/9
3. Yamaha SW60XD = Port 320
4. Gravis Ultrasound ACE 1.1 = IRQ 7


Do any of those support MPU-401 intelligent mode?
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Re: My sound-machine retro build.

Postby gdjacobs » 2017-10-21 @ 04:01

No, except through SoftMPU.
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Re: My sound-machine retro build.

Postby Batyra » 2017-10-23 @ 07:29

the Goat wrote:Very impressive. I think you should get an external mixer instead of daisy chaining the sound through every card.

Batyra wrote:1. AWE32 CT2760 + 28MB + WaveBlaster I CT1900 = Port 300, IRQ 5
2. Ensoniq Soundscape Elite connected via game port to Roland SC-55mkII = Port 330, IRQ 2/9
3. Yamaha SW60XD = Port 320
4. Gravis Ultrasound ACE 1.1 = IRQ 7


Do any of those support MPU-401 intelligent mode?


Ensoniq soundscape elite has semi-inteligent mode. Enugh for Monkey Island and ther games to listen to them on Roland midi module.
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Re: My sound-machine retro build.

Postby the Goat » 2017-10-23 @ 11:42

Batyra wrote:Ensoniq soundscape elite has semi-inteligent mode. Enugh for Monkey Island and ther games to listen to them on Roland midi module.


I've never heard of that. Good to know.
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Re: My sound-machine retro build.

Postby Niezgodka » 2017-10-26 @ 03:04

Wait, so how it works? I have AWE64+GUS+LAPC-I, but I have external mixer. So if I will connect output of one card, into output of second card, and output of last one into the speakers, it will work for each card?
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Re: My sound-machine retro build.

Postby Batyra » 2017-10-26 @ 07:29

Niezgodka wrote:Wait, so how it works? I have AWE64+GUS+LAPC-I, but I have external mixer. So if I will connect output of one card, into output of second card, and output of last one into the speakers, it will work for each card?


I have not tried AWE64 in this "combo" but it will works.
LAPC is connected straight to mixer. AWE64 is connected to GUS ACE - because that how it works and from ACE to mixer.

Before I had mixer I used to connecto one card to enouther by line in / out... but this is not the best way due to some quality issues.

The most difficult thing is to install all drivers and have no resources conflicts. But if you plan it well - it can be done :)
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