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Reply 40 of 59, by Dimitris1980

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I am watching the post so as I have understood:

1. The Roland RA-50 is like a second generation MT32. So, The buffer overflow bug is corrected?
2. All games run well like a real MT32 with the same sound quality?
3. As you mentioned there aren't extra sound effects. One good example is Lure of the Temptress which has bird, dog, water sound effects etc. with Roland CM32L and Roland CM64. So i guess these sound effects don't exist with the Roland RA-50.
4. Do you think it's s good buy if someone cannot afford to pay for a real MT32?

Thank you

- Macintosh LC475, Powerbook 540c, Macintosh Performa 6116CD, Power Macintosh G3 Minitower (x2), Imac G3, Powermac G4 MDD, Powermac G5, Imac Mid 2007
- Cyrix 120+ Dos/Win95 PC
- Amiga 500, Amiga 1200
- Roland MT32, CM64, CM500, SC55, SC88, Yamaha MU50

Reply 41 of 59, by Salient

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Dimitris1980 wrote on 2021-11-27, 11:57:
I am watching the post so as I have understood: […]
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I am watching the post so as I have understood:

1. The Roland RA-50 is like a second generation MT32. So, The buffer overflow bug is corrected?
2. All games run well like a real MT32 with the same sound quality?
3. As you mentioned there aren't extra sound effects. One good example is Lure of the Temptress which has bird, dog, water sound effects etc. with Roland CM32L and Roland CM64. So i guess these sound effects don't exist with the Roland RA-50.
4. Do you think it's s good buy if someone cannot afford to pay for a real MT32?

Thank you

1) That is correct, but keep in mind you will either need to modify the device or use softmpu to overcome the all notes off 'bug'.

2) That is also correct. It sounds exactly like a 2nd generation real MT-32.

3) Again, correct. The CM32L/CM64 extra sound effects are absent.

4) For the right price, it's a good buy.

Of course nowadays we have things like the MP32L from serdaco, based on a raspberry Pi, which will set you back around 100 euros (with the raspberry Pi itself) and this has the advantage of being able to load the original 1st gen ROM's as well as the 2nd generation and the CM32L ROMs, so you will have the sound effects in that case. The current state of the Munt MT-32 emulator, which it is based on, is more than good enough to replace the real hardware in my opinion.

MIDI comparison website: << Wavetable.nl >>
(Always) looking for: Any Wavetable daughterboard, MIDI Module (GM/GS/XG)

Reply 42 of 59, by Dimitris1980

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Thank you for the info provided. They are very useful. Two more questions:

1. Can you explain to me what is the all notes off bug? Has to do with the sound ? I have never used softmpu. My PC is a Cyrix 120+ with pcmidi card installed.
2. Any experience with Roland RA-50 and Macintosh computers?

- Macintosh LC475, Powerbook 540c, Macintosh Performa 6116CD, Power Macintosh G3 Minitower (x2), Imac G3, Powermac G4 MDD, Powermac G5, Imac Mid 2007
- Cyrix 120+ Dos/Win95 PC
- Amiga 500, Amiga 1200
- Roland MT32, CM64, CM500, SC55, SC88, Yamaha MU50

Reply 43 of 59, by Salient

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Dimitris1980 wrote on 2021-11-27, 15:11:

Thank you for the info provided. They are very useful. Two more questions:

1. Can you explain to me what is the all notes off bug? Has to do with the sound ? I have never used softmpu. My PC is a Cyrix 120+ with pcmidi card installed.
2. Any experience with Roland RA-50 and Macintosh computers?

The all notes off issue is not really a bug, but it is a function that is not, by default, supported on the RA-50. A real MT-32 has this function and games make use of it. Lack of this feature results in 'hanging'/continuous notes/tones in game music where it was supposed to get silent. The hardware modification is nothing more than a bypass of the internal sequencer of the RA-50 since this is the reason it lacks this support. When done properly (with a switch) it is fully reversible so the unit can still be used as a true RA-50 when desired.
Instead of a hardware modification one can make use of an MS-DOS program called "SoftMPU". this has an RA-50 specific function to overcome the lack of the all-notes-off command in a default RA-50. This will most likely work perfectly with your pcmidi interface card.

I have no experience wih Macintosh computers, but the results will most likely be the same.
I don't think however a soft-mpu alternative exists for this.

MIDI comparison website: << Wavetable.nl >>
(Always) looking for: Any Wavetable daughterboard, MIDI Module (GM/GS/XG)

Reply 44 of 59, by Dimitris1980

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Think you for the useful information.

- Macintosh LC475, Powerbook 540c, Macintosh Performa 6116CD, Power Macintosh G3 Minitower (x2), Imac G3, Powermac G4 MDD, Powermac G5, Imac Mid 2007
- Cyrix 120+ Dos/Win95 PC
- Amiga 500, Amiga 1200
- Roland MT32, CM64, CM500, SC55, SC88, Yamaha MU50

Reply 46 of 59, by Dimitris1980

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I use retro omputers. My equipment is the following:

Power Macintosh G3 Minitower connected with Roland CM500
Macintosh Performa 6116 connected with Roland MT32 and Roland Sound Canvas SC88
PC Dos/Windows 95 connected with Roland MT32, Roland CM64, Roland Sound Canvas SC55 and Yamaha MU50.

I have the following computers which i would like to equip with a new midi device (if i find for a good price):
Macintosh LC475
Powerbook 540c

But now that you mentioned dosbox maybe i will check what i can do with my Powermac G5 😀

- Macintosh LC475, Powerbook 540c, Macintosh Performa 6116CD, Power Macintosh G3 Minitower (x2), Imac G3, Powermac G4 MDD, Powermac G5, Imac Mid 2007
- Cyrix 120+ Dos/Win95 PC
- Amiga 500, Amiga 1200
- Roland MT32, CM64, CM500, SC55, SC88, Yamaha MU50

Reply 47 of 59, by ultramars

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Salient wrote on 2021-11-27, 13:08:
1) That is correct, but keep in mind you will either need to modify the device or use softmpu to overcome the all notes off 'bug […]
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Dimitris1980 wrote on 2021-11-27, 11:57:
I am watching the post so as I have understood: […]
Show full quote

I am watching the post so as I have understood:

1. The Roland RA-50 is like a second generation MT32. So, The buffer overflow bug is corrected?
2. All games run well like a real MT32 with the same sound quality?
3. As you mentioned there aren't extra sound effects. One good example is Lure of the Temptress which has bird, dog, water sound effects etc. with Roland CM32L and Roland CM64. So i guess these sound effects don't exist with the Roland RA-50.
4. Do you think it's s good buy if someone cannot afford to pay for a real MT32?

Thank you

1) That is correct, but keep in mind you will either need to modify the device or use softmpu to overcome the all notes off 'bug'.

2) That is also correct. It sounds exactly like a 2nd generation real MT-32.

3) Again, correct. The CM32L/CM64 extra sound effects are absent.

4) For the right price, it's a good buy.

Of course nowadays we have things like the MP32L from serdaco, based on a raspberry Pi, which will set you back around 100 euros (with the raspberry Pi itself) and this has the advantage of being able to load the original 1st gen ROM's as well as the 2nd generation and the CM32L ROMs, so you will have the sound effects in that case. The current state of the Munt MT-32 emulator, which it is based on, is more than good enough to replace the real hardware in my opinion.

hello,
good to know all of the above comparison between RA-50 & CM/MT-32(L)
I understand that the RA-50 will play the music of games as good as the MT-32, but what if i also want to use it to make music: can i use the same software to edit the sounds as for the MT-32? Or can anyone just tell me if i can change the sounds of the RA-50 via software like it can be done with the MT-32 ?
thank you 😀

Reply 48 of 59, by Salient

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ultramars wrote on 2022-02-14, 21:21:
hello, good to know all of the above comparison between RA-50 & CM/MT-32(L) I understand that the RA-50 will play the music of […]
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hello,
good to know all of the above comparison between RA-50 & CM/MT-32(L)
I understand that the RA-50 will play the music of games as good as the MT-32, but what if i also want to use it to make music: can i use the same software to edit the sounds as for the MT-32? Or can anyone just tell me if i can change the sounds of the RA-50 via software like it can be done with the MT-32 ?
thank you 😀

Even though I don't use it to create music I assume that it would work exactly the same as a regular MT-32 or CM-32L. Since games effectively uses the same sysex commands to alter the sounds I can't see a reason why that would not work from editing software that is aimed at the MT-32/CM-32L or similar.

MIDI comparison website: << Wavetable.nl >>
(Always) looking for: Any Wavetable daughterboard, MIDI Module (GM/GS/XG)

Reply 50 of 59, by Navecitas

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Hi, yesterday i moded my recently purchased RA-50.
I followed the tutorial, get midi in from IC44 pin 6, but i don´t have sounds on the RA-50.
I have the "LA sound module not present" message on screen but no works.
I´m using a dos PC with MPU-401 sound card and a MIDI cable inserted on SEQ midi Input.
After that i solder the midi in cable from IC43 pin 1 and the midi cable from the sound card on KBD midi in and it works.

why doesn't it work for me from pin6 of IC44?
is there any difference between getting midi input from ic44 or ic 43?
Thnak you

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Reply 51 of 59, by darry

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If anyone in the Montreal (province of Quebec in Canada) area is looking for a deal on a RA-50 locally, one of the bigger local pawn shop chains with a WEB presence has one for sale for 110 CAN$ and have apparently had it for sale since 2019 .

To respect Vogons' policies, I will not be providing more detailed information. Anyway, what I have shared should make it rather easy to find for most local inhabitants .

Apologies to MODs if what I have shared crosses any red lines . If it does, please let me know and EDIT/DELETE this post accordingly .

EDIT : 2022/05/02 It's still there, so clearly not many amateurs in Montreal . 😉

EDIT2 : 2022/05/10 It's gone and it wasn't me . It's still there. Something might have been off with the site's search engine a moment ago .

Reply 54 of 59, by darry

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pentiumspeed wrote on 2022-05-20, 17:01:

What's the difference between RA-50, RA-90 and RA-95?

Thanks and cheers,

The RA-50 is an LA Synth that is mostly functionally equivalent to a 2nd gen MT-32 ( or a CM32L without the extra patches)
The RA-95 has a GS logo, so it is a GS synth. Not sure about Sound Canvas equivalence
No idea about the RA-90, other than it's manual referring to its synth engine being either the same or or similar to the E-35 and E-70 . The E-70 manual mentions GS http://www.rolandce.com/mediafiles/manuals/E70_fr.pdf .

Reply 56 of 59, by Spikey

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Reverb defaults to on and level 5 (I think Hall type?).

See the manual for reverb, page 46:
http://cdn.roland.com/assets/media/pdf/RA-50_OM.pdf

Looks like it's Room 2 type for the RA-50 by default. Not sure of level, it doesn't say. And unlike the MT-32, you can't appear to change the level from the panel, although you can disable it (although I wouldnt!). So you'd need to change the level via SysEx (although games will do this by default). See page 102 for specifics, and the general SysEx is a few pages before. You can probably search these forums for SysEx strings for the MT-32 reverb settings, they're probably the same.

Reply 57 of 59, by ozorfis

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Many thanks Spikey. It seems the commands are the same for the RA-50 and the MT-32 module. I will test it soon.

Pitch Bend Range and Reverb SysEx Code

Start Byte = 5 and Checksum Type 2 seem to generate the correct checksum with the tool used in the link above.

Reply 58 of 59, by ozorfis

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It worked as intended - no more hanging notes and full control over reverb!

Although this tool gave me some errors it still created a midi file from sysex text, that I can play to change the reverb:
https://www.bwalk.com.au/MidiUtil/FileConvert.html

Awesome!

Reply 59 of 59, by ozorfis

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attached are some midi files for different reverb settings. If at all I use type Room, time 2, level 2.

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    Midi files for MT-32 reverb settings
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