VOGONS


Reply 40 of 932, by dionb

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carlostex wrote:

Absolutely amazing design, congratulations to Marmes and Keropi.

Best soundcard ever

No onboard wavetable, no SB16, PAS16, GUS, Covox or AdLib Gold support. So room for improvement 😜

But seriously: very, very, VERY impressive!

Would certainly consider one, but unless I'm mistaken there's no price tag yet. What sort of ballpark are we talking here?

Reply 41 of 932, by 640K!enough

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keropi wrote:

like marmes said a jumper to do that is not possible - this can be done with configuring the card's eeprom. I wrote in some previous post that we can supply a batch file that will do just that so choosing an OPL3 device is a reboot away 😀

Is the reboot necessary? Can't you just develop a custom utility to manipulate the appropriate registers? Depending upon Crystal's design, it may be necessary to software-reset the IC, but it would be strange if you couldn't get the desired results without re-writing the resource map (EEPROM) and rebooting.

Reply 42 of 932, by keropi

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🤣 @Dionb
I cannot comment on the price yet - we are still looking to bring cost down - but still buy from reliable sources - I don't want to say something and then take it back.
Please be patient... there will be 2 versions with and without the PCMIDI part so everyone can get what they need.

@640k!enough
maybe it's possible without hard-configuring the eeprom but let me ask you: who will actually use this feature on a constant basis and not just 1-2 times just for the LuLz ? I mean you have the real deal onboard, I just can't imagine a scenario other than making some comparison that the crystal-fm will be used...
Having said that if anyone that is skilled in software wants to make extra programs/tweakers or whatnot please contact either me or marmes so an evaluation board can be sent for testing and messing with 😊

🎵 🎧 PCMIDI MPU , Orpheus , Action Rewind , Megacard and MK8330 soundcard website

Reply 43 of 932, by carlostex

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dionb wrote:
carlostex wrote:

Absolutely amazing design, congratulations to Marmes and Keropi.

Best soundcard ever

No onboard wavetable, no SB16, PAS16, GUS, Covox or AdLib Gold support. So room for improvement 😜

.Onboard Wavetable: would probably be possible to add and use the UART Crystal MPU, maybe a dreamblaster X2 integrated, but this would increase cost to much

Covox would not be too hard to add, and AdLib Gold compatibility in FM only.

The rest is just crazy talk unless you go FPGA. 😜

So i'll keep saying that so far, this is the most promising Sound card ever.

Reply 44 of 932, by Marmes

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According to datasheet you need to do a cold reboot, so crystal chip may be programmed again.

640K!enough wrote:
keropi wrote:

like marmes said a jumper to do that is not possible - this can be done with configuring the card's eeprom. I wrote in some previous post that we can supply a batch file that will do just that so choosing an OPL3 device is a reboot away 😀

Is the reboot necessary? Can't you just develop a custom utility to manipulate the appropriate registers? Depending upon Crystal's design, it may be necessary to software-reset the IC, but it would be strange if you couldn't get the desired results without re-writing the resource map (EEPROM) and rebooting.

Reply 45 of 932, by j^aws

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carlostex wrote:
.Onboard Wavetable: would probably be possible to add and use the UART Crystal MPU, maybe a dreamblaster X2 integrated, but this […]
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dionb wrote:
carlostex wrote:

Absolutely amazing design, congratulations to Marmes and Keropi.

Best soundcard ever

No onboard wavetable, no SB16, PAS16, GUS, Covox or AdLib Gold support. So room for improvement 😜

.Onboard Wavetable: would probably be possible to add and use the UART Crystal MPU, maybe a dreamblaster X2 integrated, but this would increase cost to much

Covox would not be too hard to add, and AdLib Gold compatibility in FM only.

The rest is just crazy talk unless you go FPGA. 😜

So i'll keep saying that so far, this is the most promising Sound card ever.

Regarding Adlib Gold, you have the OPL3 FM with SPDIF output which you can feed into an external DSP effects processor of your choice to get various flavours for surround effects.

Regarding wavetable headers, indeed this card favours external modules for Intelligent Mode MPU401 and external GM sound modules. This obviously gives greater flexibility for sound output from a single hub for which Orpheus is made for. Don't know how much the wavetable header will add to complexity and cost, but the card would feel more complete with one though.

Reply 46 of 932, by keropi

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@ j^aws

there IS a wavetable header on the card, it's just all black and hard to spot... it's in the usual place at the top
there are also pics with an X2 and TB60-XG wavetable cards connected 😀

🎵 🎧 PCMIDI MPU , Orpheus , Action Rewind , Megacard and MK8330 soundcard website

Reply 47 of 932, by j^aws

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keropi wrote:

@ j^aws

there IS a wavetable header on the card, it's just all black and hard to spot... it's in the usual place at the top
there are also pics with an X2 and TB60-XG wavetable cards connected 😀

Ah, yes - I missed it earlier! Now the request to have an on-board ROMset makes even less sense; why would you limit yourself to a prefixed ROM when you are free to choose one yourself? This card is already very close to a perfect one.

Reply 48 of 932, by gdjacobs

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Man, this thing appears to tick a lot of boxes. Have you verified how it performs wrt stereo reversal issues?

All hail the Great Capacitor Brand Finder

Reply 49 of 932, by keropi

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^ nope I did not think of that... should be the same as any other CS4237 card , any title to check?

🎵 🎧 PCMIDI MPU , Orpheus , Action Rewind , Megacard and MK8330 soundcard website

Reply 50 of 932, by dionb

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j^aws wrote:
keropi wrote:

@ j^aws

there IS a wavetable header on the card, it's just all black and hard to spot... it's in the usual place at the top
there are also pics with an X2 and TB60-XG wavetable cards connected 😀

Ah, yes - I missed it earlier! Now the request to have an on-board ROMset makes even less sense; why would you limit yourself to a prefixed ROM when you are free to choose one yourself? This card is already very close to a perfect one.

It wasn't a serious request, on par with GUS and Covox support 😎

Tbh, no fan of onboard ROMset. At best it's good but inflexible, usually it's less than that. Wavetable header and good external MIDI are far more useful and both present here (and intelligent 😉 ).

Reply 51 of 932, by gdjacobs

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keropi wrote:

^ nope I did not think of that... should be the same as any other CS4237 card , any title to check?

Start with Doom, DN3D, and MPXPlay, maybe.

All hail the Great Capacitor Brand Finder

Reply 52 of 932, by keropi

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so speaking of tests, what recording do you want to hear? what should we upload?

🎵 🎧 PCMIDI MPU , Orpheus , Action Rewind , Megacard and MK8330 soundcard website

Reply 54 of 932, by 640K!enough

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Marmes wrote:

According to datasheet you need to do a cold reboot, so crystal chip may be programmed again.

Maybe we're looking at different datasheets, or I haven't read it carefully enough yet, but I didn't find any mention of that requirement. The only exception is if the existing software disables Plug and Play isolation and/or the Crystal Key after the first initialisation. Other than that, its behaviour seems quite similar to the InterWave, in that you can repeat the isolation and configuration process without a full restart, and without re-writing the EEPROM.

As keropi said, it's not particularly relevant, but I think it's an interesting distinction nonetheless, and always like to know how different manufacturers designed their hardware. These details could be handy, however, in solving your difficulties with OPL3 versus Crystal FM. For Win 9x, if you have a DOS-level tool that disables the configuration interfaces, the Windows driver might not be able to forcibly re-enable the Crystal FM. Of course that may cause other problems, but may still be worth a try. There may be other, simpler, Windows-based work-arounds, but that may be one possibility to keep in mind.

Reply 55 of 932, by Marmes

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Please read resource.txt, regarding 0x120 it's one way, or accessing thru register23 after activating mode3 and enabling or disabling thru x4. But the .bat way is easier for users I think.

Last edited by Marmes on 2019-12-10, 19:44. Edited 1 time in total.

Reply 56 of 932, by xjas

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Cool project! Looking forward to seeing Imago Orpheus (which supports WSS) running on this thing. 😉

twitch.tv/oldskooljay - playing the obscure, forgotten & weird - most Tuesdays & Thursdays @ 6:30 PM PDT. Bonus streams elsewhen!

Reply 59 of 932, by MrSmiley381

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Man, I really picked a good time to start exploring DOS games. I've already got a Sound Blaster Pro 2 but this looks like it'll do everything it does and then some.

Quick question technical question: if I run this alongside a GUS Max, which also has a CS4231, this shouldn't cause any immediate conflicts since the GUS Max chip is on a different IO port range, right? Just by looking at the MobyGames WSS list it looks like there are plenty of games that support WSS but not GUS Max, so this still has a place in my primary early DOS machine, alongside FMonster when it's ready 😁

I spend my days fighting with clunky software so I can afford to spend my evenings fighting with clunky hardware.