VOGONS


Reply 420 of 450, by appiah4

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MKT_Gundam wrote:

Somehow manages to sound so much worse than ALS100+/120..

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Reply 421 of 450, by appiah4

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Has anyone tried ESS Solo-1 and YMF-744 on a K8T800 motherboard? I am considering either of the two in addition to an Audigy 2 ZS to make it a Win9x/XP dual boot machine..

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

Reply 422 of 450, by Kamerat

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appiah4 wrote:

Has anyone tried ESS Solo-1 and YMF-744 on a K8T800 motherboard? I am considering either of the two in addition to an Audigy 2 ZS to make it a Win9x/XP dual boot machine..

Both will probably work under MS-DOS, the Solo-1 in TDMA mode and the YMF744 with the DSDMA TSR. In this case I would go for the Solo-1.

DOS Sound Blaster compatibility: PCI sound cards vs. PCI chipsets
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Reply 423 of 450, by The Serpent Rider

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I am considering either of the two in addition to an Audigy 2 ZS

Just use Audigy 2 ZS with Audigy driver.

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Reply 424 of 450, by digger

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Tiido wrote on 2019-11-11, 15:58:

I have not tried to buy the chip. Next time I am gonna mess with this stuff is when I hook up a CPLD or FPGA to LPC and PCI bus and create the ultimate ISA bridge. But for now my hands are full with some other things...

That will be an awesome project! 🙂

Do you think this patent might get in the way, though? https://patents.google.com/patent/CN101477502B/en

I guess it shouldn't, as long as this project remains low-key enough.

Or maybe the patent would only be infringed if some chip manufacturer were to develop an unlicensed alternative to that Fintek chip?

Reply 425 of 450, by Tiido

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No, it wouldn't since it is about the IO access cycles rather than all the other stuff I need parts of LPC bus for. Fintek/Winbond holds the patents for these things, and earliest one will expire next year. PCI to ISA patents should all be expired by now too.

T-04YBSC, a new YMF71x based sound card & Official VOGONS thread about it
Newly made 4MB 60ns 30pin SIMMs ~
mida sa loed ? nagunii aru ei saa 😜

Reply 426 of 450, by digger

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Cool.

So since the LPC spec doesn't define a standard connector, would it make sense to establish such a standard "LPC connector" for the tinkering community at this point? One that mandates that optional LPC features required for full ISA compatibility (LDRQ#, SERIRQ) to be implemented? With such a standard...

  • ...all the different motherboard-specific soldering hacks to get DMA from the SuperIO chip and such could expose the result as a standard connector
  • ...standard LPC-variants of sound card recreations such as the Snark Barker, Blasterboard, AWE64 Legacy and ARGUS could be developed
  • ...you'd only have to develop one variant of the LPC/ISA bridge you're working on
  • ...the MiSTer with ao486, an FPGA implementation of a complete 486 machine, could offer LPC through the same standard connector, and support your LPC/ISA bridge and the aforementioned hypothetical LPC-based aftermarket sound cards as well

Reply 427 of 450, by RayeR

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A semi-standard for LPC is TPM header but it exist at least in 2 different pin pitch and pinout may slightly differ. And it's missing LDRQ signal but there are some free pins that can be used for it (with wiring on MB). So nothing special to thing here, just use standard 2,54mm header on bridge board and make a ribbon cable to match your MB yourself. I had an accident on xmass so nothing new with my Fintek but i'm busy with other projects anyway...

And just to note that TPM header is disappearing from recent MB as this function was moved to ME controller. So LPC is still probably there-if not new generation of superio appeared but not easy accesible so this would definitely need wiring on MB that only a few hardcore modders would do...

Gigabyte GA-P67-DS3-B3, Core i7-2600K @4,5GHz, 4GB DDR3, 128GB SSD, GTX670(GF7900GT), SB Audigy + YMF724F + DreamBlaster combo

Reply 428 of 450, by Tiido

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While LPC could be answer to all the problems, chipset limitations make it impossible to cover some hardware such as AWE and GUS cards since they need too wide range of IO that existing chipsets are unable to provide, hence PCI+parts of LPC being the only "will work with everything" solution.
Like RayeR said, LDRQ is never present on any connector so some level of modding is always necessary. SuperIO will stick around as long as there are gamers wanting n-key rollover that so far only PS/2 seems to provide... perhaps non HID USB keyboards appear that can and then PS/2 no longer needs to be around for that and then SuperIO can also die.

T-04YBSC, a new YMF71x based sound card & Official VOGONS thread about it
Newly made 4MB 60ns 30pin SIMMs ~
mida sa loed ? nagunii aru ei saa 😜

Reply 429 of 450, by RayeR

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What IO range cannot be passed to LPC? I belived that all legacy IO ports that SB use can be passed by PCI2LPC bridge. I would expect more problems with DMA.
LPC super IO may not be used in future, there are already some Ryzen/AMD MBs that afaik have some simplified "microIO" attached to fast SPI instead LPC, no legacy stuff there. Also we can expect removing CSM from UEFI and other legacy purification, maybe soon removing of real and V86 mode. So it's question how long will be possible to run DOS on real HW and if it will take effort for all sort of hacks instead of just improving virtualizers to better emulate SB and SVGA. I read that VMware improved their SB virtualized HW so now should play sfx and music simult...

Gigabyte GA-P67-DS3-B3, Core i7-2600K @4,5GHz, 4GB DDR3, 128GB SSD, GTX670(GF7900GT), SB Audigy + YMF724F + DreamBlaster combo

Reply 430 of 450, by Tiido

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All chipsets I have seen allow to pass only 4x 256 port ranges aligned to 256 boundaries and care must be taken not to forward any IO range used by a PCI/AGP/PCI-E or some onboard device or they stop working so that means use use 3 ranges for 200...2FF for SB stuff, bits in 300...33F range for MPU, 388 for FM and then you have one range left for something else. A00...AFF is necessary for PnP stuff to function, but things like AWE need access to 2xx, 6xx, Axx and Exx to function, GUS needs somel higher order addresses (7xx when mixer is present and various other ports when the WSS codec is around) and so do many older non PnP cards that put secret IO ports in Fxx area.
Only real problem will be DMA. PCI-E allows message signalled interrupts which in theory allow to target any specific IRQ (something normal PCI cannot), but DMA itself is a problem since LPC is the last thing to carry it. Only glimmer of hope is chipsets with DMA controller completely removed, so that you can finally add your own to whatever bus available.

T-04YBSC, a new YMF71x based sound card & Official VOGONS thread about it
Newly made 4MB 60ns 30pin SIMMs ~
mida sa loed ? nagunii aru ei saa 😜

Reply 431 of 450, by digger

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RayeR wrote on 2020-03-02, 18:27:

Also we can expect removing CSM from UEFI and other legacy purification, maybe soon removing of real and V86 mode. So it's question how long will be possible to run DOS on real HW and if it will take effort for all sort of hacks instead of just improving virtualizers to better emulate SB and SVGA. I read that VMware improved their SB virtualized HW so now should play sfx and music simult...

On modern systems with hardware-assisted virtualization, including an IOMMU, a hypervisor that passes VGA hardware (or at least the legacy parts of it) through to a guest VM running DOS in real or V86 mode might indeed be the way to go in the longer term. The amazing work that kjliew has been doing to enable Glide passthrough in QEMU would make this approach even more compelling. A Sound Blaster or a GUS would then be emulated in software by the hypervisor. It's nice to see Sound Blaster emulation support improving in VMware, but I'm really hoping someone with the necessary skills will simply port the high quality sound card emulation code from DOSBox and PCem to open-source hypervisors such as QEMU and VirtualBox OSE.

In VirtualBox, it is already possible to route the emulated parallel port in the guest to a physical parallel port on the host. So that way, an OPL2LPT or OPL3LPT device could be used for FM synth support. That would solve the limitation of the current Sound Blaster emulation support in VirtualBox, which only emulates the DAC and not the FM chips. But that would still require patching games or running adlipt on the guest VM, which would only work with real-mode games. Why not let the hypervisor take care of the emulation provided by adlipt, so even protected mode games would be able to work with OPLxLPT devices?

If you pass through actual VGA hardware and an OPLxLPT device to a VM guest and emulate only the DAC of a Sound Blaster card, while making use of hardware-assisted virtualization, you'll be practically running DOS games natively anyway.

Reply 432 of 450, by RayeR

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>Tiido, thanks for explanation IO range bridging limitations. But BTW AFAIK remmeber well it was you who successfully run some SB card via Fintek LPC2ISA bridge on some P41 or so like MB...
I just want to give it a try, so prototype a quck and dirty prototype board with less effort and mimimum parts needed for ISA functionality, if it would work some way, then make better PCB - it's cheap in china...

>digger
VGA passthrough... Hm but current VGAs have worse and worse VBE/VGA/EGA... compatability and have no drivers for Win9x and newer neither for WXP so what to do with passed real VGA? Rather if it emulate some old good working S3 chip with some smart LFB memory mapping/fast copying...

Gigabyte GA-P67-DS3-B3, Core i7-2600K @4,5GHz, 4GB DDR3, 128GB SSD, GTX670(GF7900GT), SB Audigy + YMF724F + DreamBlaster combo

Reply 433 of 450, by digger

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That, or just plug in an old VGA card with good legacy VBE/VGA/EGA support in a PCI slot (with a PCIe to PCI adapter if necessary) and pass that card through to the DOS VM. 🙂 You could even keep your shiny modern TFT monitor connected to your primary modern graphics card and hook an old CRT monitor up to the old card.

But you're right, legacy VGA emulation is already fairly well implemented by most popular hypervisors, and would be much more practical. Maybe I was overly worried about the result being perceived as less "native" somehow. Particularly the lack of true text mode support. But then again, in the case of games, who cares about that?

So focusing on DOS: if someone savvy enough would either port the sound card emulation code from DOSBox to QEMU or VirtualBox OSE, or alternatively implemented support for a physical OPLxLPT device on the host as a backend for the FM-part of the emulated Sound Blaster card, we'd be pretty much set, wouldn't we?

I mean, it will still be awesome to get classic ISA sound cards to work properly in modern systems that were never designed to accommodate them, but it would no longer be the only solution for people wanting to play DOS games (particularly the more demanding ones from the DOS extender era in the latter half of the '90s) natively on newer hardware, right?

Reply 434 of 450, by ruthan

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We already had with virtualization discussion, it's nice that Vmware doing something but is closed source and it's doing one employee in its free time.. with present speed it would need at least few years do get enough compatibility with wide range of games. Virtualbox has lots of bugs and I don't see any good open source enhancement legacy projects for it. Right now I'm trying with Qemu and Qemu KVM, but there are still lots of problems and they are here for years and at least some of them don't look nice very complex to solve.

See:
Qemu DOS machine virtualization problems summary and maybe, maybe some solutions..

So probably only big hope is PCem, but 1 woman project, and some helpers, source code looks quite complex to understand, almost no documents, documentation.. and releases are one or twice per year and there are still lots of problems, there is not Mac port.. and so far speed on even fastest Core i9 is something like AMD K6-2 max.. so don't expect some high resolution DOS / Win 9x gaming for long time. And its had some problems i cant really make for example good Quake1 /Q2DOS benchmarking with it because of bugs, some data corruption issues.

| would say that is like of year of desktop Linux, hardware solution would be much better.. and would be much more compatible for long time and its always good to have alternatives.

It's hard to imagine that just every Dosbox user would able / willing to use Linux and setup KVM.. Real HW is real hw, there are people which are now ordering new ISA soundcards project 😀 or paying for FM only with Adlib LPT adapters..

Last edited by Stiletto on 2020-03-03, 22:35. Edited 1 time in total.

Im old goal oriented goatman, i care about facts and freedom, not about egos+prejudices. Hoarding=sickness. If you want respect, gain it by your behavior. I hate stupid SW limits, SW=virtual world, everything should be possible if you have enough raw HW.

Reply 435 of 450, by Tiido

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RayeR wrote on 2020-03-02, 19:40:

>Tiido, thanks for explanation IO range bridging limitations. But BTW AFAIK remmeber well it was you who successfully run some SB card via Fintek LPC2ISA bridge on some P41 or so like MB...
I just want to give it a try, so prototype a quck and dirty prototype board with less effort and mimimum parts needed for ISA functionality, if it would work some way, then make better PCB - it's cheap in china...

I only made a vanilla SB16 work which only needs 220/330/388 to function but if it was an AWE32 you can forget the EMU8000 part since it would be inaccessible.
It will certainly allow you to run variety of stuff as long as it will fit in the ports you can allocate, perhaps having several port allocations for different cases which is something I didn't explore at all after making YMF71x cards working.

T-04YBSC, a new YMF71x based sound card & Official VOGONS thread about it
Newly made 4MB 60ns 30pin SIMMs ~
mida sa loed ? nagunii aru ei saa 😜

Reply 436 of 450, by digger

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Tiido wrote on 2020-03-02, 22:24:

I only made a vanilla SB16 work which only needs 220/330/388 to function but if it was an AWE32 you can forget the EMU8000 part since it would be inaccessible.

That alone is an amazing accomplishment! 😃 Getting a SB16 to work fully on modern motherboards would make AWE32 support less relevant, since full SB16 support would also mean MPU-401 compatibility (at least UART mode, but that's what most games can work with anyway).

The one somewhat relevant limitation here that I can think of would be not having GUS support. The reason for that being that certain games with tracker music that made optimal use of the GUS for high-quality hardware mixing would have to fall back to somewhat less optimal software mixing with a Sound Blaster. But that would still be a lot better than not having any sound at all (or only PC speaker sound or only music without sampled audio).

I know you're working on a solution that will overcome even those limitations by combining LPC with PCI, which would be even more incredible, but if an LPC-only solution would still offer full SB16 support, that already would be enough for a lot of people.

Reply 437 of 450, by RayeR

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Yes, SB16 with working MIDI would be fine 😀 Currently I use YMF724 that works for many games but still crash/hang wth some so real SB16 would be better. I already have GUS but it's very long ISA card that I cannot fit in case 😀 so I have it in old 486...

Just one question to VGA passthrough. Ruthan told, that old VGA cards doesn't work in new Z370 MB. Does it mean such old VGA cannot just boot but is visible on PCI bus (VID, DID present in e.g. lsusb) but can be used for passthrough after boot with primary PCIE card or it doesn't work at all - no visible on PCI bus? Also it needs to have 2 monitors or monitor with multiple inputs and switch them via button which is a bit anoying...

Gigabyte GA-P67-DS3-B3, Core i7-2600K @4,5GHz, 4GB DDR3, 128GB SSD, GTX670(GF7900GT), SB Audigy + YMF724F + DreamBlaster combo

Reply 438 of 450, by theseim

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Quick question to the ESS Solo1 Cards. What are the correct PCISET settings to run the card in DDMA mode?
Which values must be given for base address and count?

pciset 1969 125D 61 11111111 00000000
pciset 1969 125D 60 11110001 00000000

Reply 439 of 450, by ruthan

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I had a bit of time to play with proper C-Media 8738 cards, because before i had only cheap chinese cards from eBays, where could be some cuts (because who cares about Dos..).. even Phil reviewed such card., its Aopen but looks exactly same design as cheapest ones.

I finally got Terratec Aureon 5.1, i had digital sound in and out, 5.1 sound surrond and all other fancy stuf. It even claims that there is EAX and A3D support, but i mainly wanted to test it in Dos.. and with VIA880 chipset, at least FM is working fine, i tested couple newer games as Doom II, Blood, Warcraft II and in all music so fine, so its probably ok, everywhere.. FX is other matter, here as excepted i got always some error and never got proper sound, i used generic C-Media drivers, i dunno if terratec made some own, but i doubt it.. For windows there are specific Terratec drivers, not just generic C-Media.

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Im old goal oriented goatman, i care about facts and freedom, not about egos+prejudices. Hoarding=sickness. If you want respect, gain it by your behavior. I hate stupid SW limits, SW=virtual world, everything should be possible if you have enough raw HW.