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First post, by Law212

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Hi people, I finally got around to getting a better sound card for my 486 machhine. I had an opti audio 16 previously but couldnt get it to work, so I was able to get a SB 16 and windows installed the proper drivers right away. ONly issue was that I played a game (Alone in the Dark) and the CD audio plays just fine, but the sound effects and speech come from the internal PC speaker. WHat did i do wrong and what should I try?

Reply 1 of 14, by iFXBR

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Game setup maybe? Also, check your Sound Blaster card version. Depending on model, you have to install MS-DOS drivers prior to run the game. Old Sound Blaster models offers jumpers to set IRQ and DMA addresses. Default SB config is IRQ5 DMA220.

iFXBR - Vintage Computer Lover

Reply 2 of 14, by Law212

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iFXBR wrote on 2021-01-25, 02:21:

Game setup maybe? Also, check your Sound Blaster card version. Depending on model, you have to install MS-DOS drivers prior to run the game. Old Sound Blaster models offers jumpers to set IRQ and DMA addresses. Default SB config is IRQ5 DMA220.

It was something simple . IN game setup. Sorry im not great with retro PCs. Still trying to figure out the best autoexec and config sys so I have enough memory for games and be able to run the cdrom and mouse and sound...

Having some other issues unfortunately. My 5.25 floppy drive is not configured properly in the bios which i think is causing some issues. When istalling games under DOS, when inserting the second disk the drive will say there is nothing there. Installing the same game in windows works fine.

I have to get into the BIOS, but my keyboard does not register the control and alt keys and i have to press cntrl+alt+esc ...

Lastly, im running games that should run well on the system but they go slow. Maybe I need a better video card?

Reply 3 of 14, by bofh.fromhell

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Law212 wrote on 2021-01-27, 05:29:
iFXBR wrote on 2021-01-25, 02:21:

Game setup maybe? Also, check your Sound Blaster card version. Depending on model, you have to install MS-DOS drivers prior to run the game. Old Sound Blaster models offers jumpers to set IRQ and DMA addresses. Default SB config is IRQ5 DMA220.

Lastly, im running games that should run well on the system but they go slow. Maybe I need a better video card?

Possibly, video cards has a large part in gaming performance even in 2D.
But the 486 era has a huge performance span.
And there's quite a few roadblocks for someone inexperienced to get a system running well.
In your case Id look for a turbo function tho.
And sort the keyboard, you need it for almost everything on an old computer =)

Reply 4 of 14, by Law212

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bofh.fromhell wrote on 2021-01-27, 16:29:
Possibly, video cards has a large part in gaming performance even in 2D. But the 486 era has a huge performance span. And there' […]
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Law212 wrote on 2021-01-27, 05:29:
iFXBR wrote on 2021-01-25, 02:21:

Game setup maybe? Also, check your Sound Blaster card version. Depending on model, you have to install MS-DOS drivers prior to run the game. Old Sound Blaster models offers jumpers to set IRQ and DMA addresses. Default SB config is IRQ5 DMA220.

Lastly, im running games that should run well on the system but they go slow. Maybe I need a better video card?

Possibly, video cards has a large part in gaming performance even in 2D.
But the 486 era has a huge performance span.
And there's quite a few roadblocks for someone inexperienced to get a system running well.
In your case Id look for a turbo function tho.
And sort the keyboard, you need it for almost everything on an old computer =)

I got the keyboard issue sorted. I found one at my moms house and it worked perfectly. I was able to get into the BIOS and change the settings for the 5.25 inch floppy drive.
My issue at the moment is the autoexec.bat and config.sys files. Trying to get that precious free memory to actually run games. I've looked at so many different set ups online but I cant get enough to run games. i'm at 500 free at the moment and go between that and 550k .

I was trying to play some jurassic park and it needs 575.....

pEs3nUC.jpg
UpZob2z.jpg

Reply 5 of 14, by dionb

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Do MEM /C /P from inside DOS and post it here - looking at that list I don't see why you don't have a lot more free conventional memory.

Only thing I can immediately see you can lose is "SAMPLE.SYS", which looks like a CD Rom driver that's not being called in AUTOEXEC.BAT anyway. But unless it uses up 100kB, that's not your biggest problem.

Also, exactly which SB16 do you have? (CT-number) You're loading a lot of stuff for it there...

Reply 7 of 14, by 1541

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@Law212: your CONFIG.SYS line with EMM386.EXE misses an argument therefore nothing gets loaded in the upper memory area.

Add "NOEMS" behind EMM386.EXE

Windows 9x resources for German systems (service packs, drivers & NUSB)

Reply 8 of 14, by froller

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Law212 wrote on 2021-02-09, 03:09:
I got the keyboard issue sorted. I found one at my moms house and it worked perfectly. I was able to get into the BIOS and chang […]
Show full quote

I got the keyboard issue sorted. I found one at my moms house and it worked perfectly. I was able to get into the BIOS and change the settings for the 5.25 inch floppy drive.
My issue at the moment is the autoexec.bat and config.sys files. Trying to get that precious free memory to actually run games. I've looked at so many different set ups online but I cant get enough to run games. i'm at 500 free at the moment and go between that and 550k .

I was trying to play some jurassic park and it needs 575.....

pEs3nUC.jpg
UpZob2z.jpg

DEVICE=C:\DOS\himem.sys /VERBOSE /TESTMEM:OFF
DEVICE=C:\DOS\emm386.exe I=B000-B7FF I=C800-EFFF FRAME=C800 RAM HIGHSCAN

And LH SET is quite useless 'cause SET is not resident program or drivers so you can't control where to load it.

If doesn't give you enough free conventional memory look into your UMB and add more regions or even disable EMS. This frees memory occupied by page frame.

Last edited by froller on 2021-02-14, 21:14. Edited 1 time in total.

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Virus check complete. All viruses are working properly.

Reply 9 of 14, by froller

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dionb wrote on 2021-02-09, 06:56:

Do MEM /C /P from inside DOS and post it here - looking at that list I don't see why you don't have a lot more free conventional memory.

MEM /D /P give you more info.

Moreover LH has its own parameters. It allows you to specify the memory region. Sometimes it's useful to toss some resident programs in memory to pace them in order you want and not the order they are loaded.

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Virus check complete. All viruses are working properly.

Reply 10 of 14, by megatron-uk

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Unless you have a game that absolutely requires CTMM.SYS and CTSB16.SYS I would comment them out - there are virtually no games that need the soundblaster drivers loaded; most talk to the hardware directly, and the SET BLASTER= and DIAGNOSE.EXE should take care of the hardware initialisation for you.

My collection database and technical wiki:
https://www.target-earth.net

Reply 11 of 14, by Law212

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This is all great information. I will get to implementing the suggestions today or tomorrow. I want to thank everyone who replied and is trying to help me out. I dont know nearly enough about this stuff to do it on my own. Thanks again to everyone.

Reply 12 of 14, by froller

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Law212 wrote on 2021-02-14, 23:48:

This is all great information. I will get to implementing the suggestions today or tomorrow. I want to thank everyone who replied and is trying to help me out. I dont know nearly enough about this stuff to do it on my own. Thanks again to everyone.

Just found manual in English:
EMM386.EXE manual
HIMEM.SYS manual

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Virus check complete. All viruses are working properly.

Reply 13 of 14, by Law212

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SO I made the changes posted above and it gave me a nice 60 K of memory and i was able to run games. Problem was the game would freeze soon after . every time.
Also whats a good graphics card for a 486 dx 2 66?

Reply 14 of 14, by Law212

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Law212 wrote on 2021-02-21, 21:26:

SO I made the changes posted above and it gave me a nice 60 K of memory and i was able to run games. Problem was the game would freeze soon after . every time.
Also whats a good graphics card for a 486 dx 2 66?

So other games worked just fine and didnt freeze.
Do you think having a more modern dvd drive in a 486 would cause games to have issues that have to always access the cd for music and speech?

Now to set up my pentium 1 . I need to fix up the config files . for some reason it wont properly exit to dos . the screen will turn off and i have to reboot.