Music Quest MPU clone cards, anyone interested in them?

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

Re: Music Quest MPU clone cards, anyone interested in them?

Postby phosgene » 2018-5-22 @ 09:43

Very interested! Is it ok to just put my forum handle on the list? I'm too paranoid to publicly post my email address. :)
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Re: Music Quest MPU clone cards, anyone interested in them?

Postby keropi » 2018-5-22 @ 10:18

yes nicknames are OK for VOGONS/AmiBay
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Re: Music Quest MPU clone cards, anyone interested in them?

Postby the_ultra_code » 2018-5-30 @ 06:09

Hello keropi (and others following this topic).

I recently watched Phil's review of your cool lil' device, and it made me want to get one of your cards for my Win98 SE Retro Gaming PC, because I recently bought (and am still waiting for in the mail) a MT-32 and a SC-88 for retro DOS games (so that I can get a truly "authentic" MIDI intelligent mode interface and ignore having to use SoftMPU). However, immediately following that thought, I remembered that my motherboard only has one ISA slot, and that is being occupied by an AWE64 Value :(. So much for having to not need SoftMPU. :}

This scenario made me think of an idea, though, probably a very, extremely stupid one. Wouldn't it be possible to make a PCI-variant of this ISA card of yours? If not, in relatively simple terms, why would it not work? I'm just curious, that's all.

Thanks!
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Re: Music Quest MPU clone cards, anyone interested in them?

Postby keropi » 2018-5-30 @ 06:29

@the_ultra_code
sadly making a PCI version without needing some sort for softmpu tsr (thus making the whole effort pointless) is not possible , it's just the way PCI works. That's why PCI sound cards are not recommended for DOS usage and that's why back then manufacturers came up with the PC/PCI connector that some cards used for a short time until it was abandoned since DOS became less relevant.
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Re: Music Quest MPU clone cards, anyone interested in them?

Postby the_ultra_code » 2018-5-30 @ 06:46

:{ Bummer.

Well, "the more you know."

Thanks for you response, keropi. Much appreciated. :)
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Re: Music Quest MPU clone cards, anyone interested in them?

Postby squiggly » 2018-5-31 @ 07:08

the_ultra_code wrote:Hello keropi (and others following this topic).

I recently watched Phil's review of your cool lil' device, and it made me want to get one of your cards for my Win98 SE Retro Gaming PC, because I recently bought (and am still waiting for in the mail) a MT-32 and a SC-88 for retro DOS games (so that I can get a truly "authentic" MIDI intelligent mode interface and ignore having to use SoftMPU). However, immediately following that thought, I remembered that my motherboard only has one ISA slot, and that is being occupied by an AWE64 Value :(. So much for having to not need SoftMPU. :}



If you can spend that much on midi equipment can't you afford 50-100 bucks for a decent super 7mobo?
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Re: Music Quest MPU clone cards, anyone interested in them?

Postby the_ultra_code » 2018-6-01 @ 20:12

Whooah-whoah-whoah-who-oah there bud!

You know, I might build a super socket 7 or similar DOS build later, but there are three reasons why I am not going to do that soon (although, who knows with me):
  1. While there are quite a few DOS games that interest me, and there are plenty of DOS games that I will explore later on that I'm sure I'll enjoy, I'm just not too much into DOS gaming. Although I do enjoy the DOS experience, I'm more into Windows gaming. Also, my Pentium 3 system meets all of my DOS needs, and if I want to play some really old DOS games, I might just go with DOSBox or other emulation.
  2. I'm constrained by space. Just look at my setup. A little crowded already. Plus, I soon want to build a new (i.e. like 2018/2019) PC soon, so there more space to be taken up to look forward to. Having another Retro PC when I already have 3 (the most modern one is an i7-870 + GeForce GTX 780 Ti for XP/10 gaming), plus a modern PC, well, at the moment, doesn't make that much sense to me.
    Image
  3. I'm starting to run low on money, so I should probably start sparing money and get a summer job. :)

Hope that answers your question. :)
Last edited by the_ultra_code on 2018-11-05 @ 20:07, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Music Quest MPU clone cards, anyone interested in them?

Postby squiggly » 2018-6-02 @ 02:45

Well then replace your current p3 mobo with a socket 370 board with 2 isa slots and that supports the Via C3. That way you have room for a HardMPU and a CPU that nicely scales down to DOS speeds. That's exactly what I do. Most games that support the mt32 were dos games after all.
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Re: Music Quest MPU clone cards, anyone interested in them?

Postby Rackatack » 2018-6-02 @ 04:52

Like Squiggly says,the mt-32 is more a dos music device, and you shouldn't have any issues with the sound canvas.
If you plan to play the dos games in dos box, I would suggest that you use a, USB midi cable and connect the mt-32 to it, you won't have the need of a soft /hard MPU.
And you can also daisychain it to the sound canvas. (midi thru to 2nd midi in)
So you'll be able to choose the one that sounds best for your games.
Either way, I had more issues with an mpu card on faster computers than on a 486, p1 or slow p2.
And sometimes even if you have keropi's card, you need softmpu because the game devs wrote a bad midi/MT-32 driver.
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Re: Music Quest MPU clone cards, anyone interested in them?

Postby keropi » 2018-6-02 @ 10:17

I've always solved my speed issues with either cache disabling or utilities like Mo'Slo , never had to use softmpu to delay transfers on my 233mmx build. Maybe it's a per case thing though, wouldn't surprise me as these issues are driver ones that can't cope with faster machines.
Another thing to really pay attention when using with a ss7 system is ACPI - it is hardwired to use IRQ9 so it conflicts with the "standard Roland" resources. The solution is to go to the BIOS and revert the system to use APM or disable ACPI all together.
This issue is tricky - not only because of the BIOS settings but because you might not even know you have it as normal uart mode works fine and it's only a small fraction of heavy "intelligent mode" using games that produce an error. It doesn't matter what "intelligent mode" mpu you have (real roland variants or music quest or clones or <insert name here>) the ACPI IRQ issue is the same.
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Re: Music Quest MPU clone cards, anyone interested in them?

Postby Rackatack » 2018-6-02 @ 11:20

keropi wrote:I've always solved my speed issues with either cache disabling or utilities like Mo'Slo , never had to use softmpu to delay transfers on my 233mmx build. Maybe it's a per case thing though, wouldn't surprise me as these issues are driver ones that can't cope with faster machines. "


Mo'Slo helped me for games that are running too fast, the issue is only with some games where I have to delay the sysex, that advertise they "support" mt-32" and kings quest V, kq5 was solved using another driver on the Sierra support site. So I confirm that it's more a driver issue, and nothing to do with the card.
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Re: Music Quest MPU clone cards, anyone interested in them?

Postby the_ultra_code » 2018-6-03 @ 13:37

squiggly wrote:Well then replace your current p3 mobo with a socket 370 board with 2 isa slots and that supports the Via C3. That way you have room for a HardMPU and a CPU that nicely scales down to DOS speeds. That's exactly what I do. Most games that support the mt32 were dos games after all.

Actually, while that would be better in some ways (like, for example, faster CPUs with better sockets, not SLOTS!), there is a variant of my Asus P3B-F motherboard with two ISA slots, and, given that, I'm sure besides that one physical difference, they are the exact same board, I'm sure if I wanted to I could replace my one-ISA-slot version with the two-ISA-slot version and not even have to reinstall Windows 98 SE and such. But, that would be another $100+ to get (https://www.ebay.com/itm/ASUS-P3B-F-Rev-1-03-Motherboard-With-PIII-300MHz-CPU-128MB-Memory/153033107388?var=null), plus all of the work of basically disassembling then reassembling my PC, so I'll just stick with what I got. :) Besides, I just found out this morning by accident that that PC's PSU is preventing the PC from even POSTing, so now I got to get a new one. This time, I'll get a modular 80+ Plus Bronze Corsair one to replace this, well, seemingly-okay-but-I-guess-not-okay non-modular 80+ Plus White EVGA one.

Rackatack wrote:Like Squiggly says,the mt-32 is more a dos music device, and you shouldn't have any issues with the sound canvas.
If you plan to play the dos games in dos box, I would suggest that you use a, USB midi cable and connect the mt-32 to it, you won't have the need of a soft /hard MPU.
And you can also daisychain it to the sound canvas. (midi thru to 2nd midi in)
So you'll be able to choose the one that sounds best for your games.
Either way, I had more issues with an mpu card on faster computers than on a 486, p1 or slow p2.
And sometimes even if you have keropi's card, you need softmpu because the game devs wrote a bad midi/MT-32 driver.

First of all, already bought a Roland USB-to-MIDI cable so I can do that. Now I'm just waiting for it. :) Second, I plan on daisy-chaining the MT-32 and SC-88 like you said. It's a great idea. And third, both the point you made about MPU cards on faster PCs and the fact that some "game devs wrote a midi/MT-32 driver" are interesting.

As for slowing down a PC, PhilsComputerLab has covered in depth several different ways of doing that (usually with setmul), but I know that P3's have locked multipliers, so would that even be an option for me in MS-DOS mode on this P3 PC of mine?
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Re: Music Quest MPU clone cards, anyone interested in them?

Postby the Goat » 2018-6-04 @ 18:47

the_ultra_code wrote:. . .there is a variant of my Asus P3B-F motherboard with two ISA slots, and, given that, I'm sure besides that one physical difference, they are the exact same board, I'm sure if I wanted to I could replace my one-ISA-slot version with the two-ISA-slot version and not even have to reinstall Windows 98 SE and such. But, that would be another $100+ to get. . .


Seriously? There is a guarantied known ideal solution to your problem. But you are electing to not utilize it because it would cost $100?
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Re: Music Quest MPU clone cards, anyone interested in them?

Postby the_ultra_code » 2018-6-04 @ 20:56

Damn, I didn't know that I was getting interrogated. Jessh.

Look. I have my P3 system already put together, it works, and with SoftMPU I should be just fine.

If I were to spend +$100 on another motherboard, and then introduce that into the system, that would introduce a bunch of new variables into the system that I'd rather not take the chance with (at least not now), doing all of the work to install that motherboard and all would just be stressful, and besides, I got other things to do.

Please stop questioning my decision. I don't want to fight, and this is not the place to do that. If you want to question, please do it via private messaging.

I did edit this post slightly.
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Re: Music Quest MPU clone cards, anyone interested in them?

Postby Xeen » 2018-6-13 @ 05:02

Hi keropi and other folks,
I’m just so excited to find this thread so please pardon me for jumping to this question directly,

Please tell me how to buy one! :blush:
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Re: Music Quest MPU clone cards, anyone interested in them?

Postby keropi » 2018-6-13 @ 07:55

Xeen wrote:Hi keropi and other folks,
I’m just so excited to find this thread so please pardon me for jumping to this question directly,

Please tell me how to buy one! :blush:


add you details here: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/ ... edit#gid=0 and marmes will contact you - he currently holds the world's stock of unsold MPUs :lol:
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Re: Music Quest MPU clone cards, anyone interested in them?

Postby Marmes » 2018-6-13 @ 13:20

Hello!
Just to say that everybody on google docs list were contacted and people that sent us PM, were answered by PM. From what I see, almost half of the contacted users don't answer, please check in your spam folder for our messages. We will send to the first that pays as there is no queue on this, 28 are available at this moment, after that we don't know if we will make more, so don't miss this oportunity. ;)

Cheers!
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Re: Music Quest MPU clone cards, anyone interested in them?

Postby Artex » 2018-6-14 @ 13:16

Received my cards yesterday! Great work gents!!
Click [here] to see my collection of retro bliss!
Click [here] to see my "I just gotta have it"' list!
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Re: Music Quest MPU clone cards, anyone interested in them?

Postby Marmes » 2018-6-16 @ 19:36

Hope ypu like it :)
Only 9 remaining.
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Re: Music Quest MPU clone cards, anyone interested in them?

Postby andre060 » 2018-6-17 @ 05:12

Hi folks! Found this thread via Phil's YouTube page reviewing this card. Really awesome, definitely interested in one of these as right now my lame solution is 2x sound cards, one for midi and one for digital audio. It's definitely a pain and requires different configurations depending on the game, not a fun solution driver-wise...

Anyway, I'm not keen on putting my email address in a public form to order... I registered for the site specifically to reach out directly, but looks like my newbie account doesn't have PM permission yet. Keropi/Marmes, can one of you contact me please? Thanks!
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