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First post, by hhhrrrd

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Hello, I'm having trouble with an Ensoniq AudioPCI card. I believe it has an ES1370 chip. I installed the Ensoniq version of the Windows drivers and everything works fine, but whenever I try to play DOS games, the sound card isn't detected at all! Everything seems to be okay with the legacy drivers, I've even tried a few DOS drivers in MS-DOS mode but I always get errors. Is there anything I can do to get the sound card to work, preferably without needing to use MS-DOS mode? Thanks!

Reply 1 of 11, by Cuttoon

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hhhrrrd wrote on 2022-05-06, 14:14:

I believe it has an ES1370 chip.

Hi, that should not be a matter of faith. Rip out that card from the computer, find a window of flick on some light and read what kind of beast you're dealing with. Before that, anything here is idle speculation.
If unsure of the designation or in any case, begin a post like this with giving people something to gaze at. Make a good photo of the card, attach it here. Usually helps.

If it's indeed the ES1370 chip, search for ES1370 here, you'll find tons of threads on the topic.

I like jumpers.

Reply 2 of 11, by hhhrrrd

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Cuttoon wrote on 2022-05-06, 14:50:
Hi, that should not be a matter of faith. Rip out that card from the computer, find a window of flick on some light and read wha […]
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hhhrrrd wrote on 2022-05-06, 14:14:

I believe it has an ES1370 chip.

Hi, that should not be a matter of faith. Rip out that card from the computer, find a window of flick on some light and read what kind of beast you're dealing with. Before that, anything here is idle speculation.
If unsure of the designation or in any case, begin a post like this with giving people something to gaze at. Make a good photo of the card, attach it here. Usually helps.

If it's indeed the ES1370 chip, search for ES1370 here, you'll find tons of threads on the topic.

I have confirmed it is an ES1370. I have searched throughout the VOGONS forums, but nothing has led me to a solution. This forum: Re: Ensoniq AudioPCI / ES1370 DOS Emulation not working is the same issue I'm having, but again, the games don't detect it, and under DOS mode it tells me I need EMM386.exe. Sorry for not clarifying earlier.

Reply 3 of 11, by Cuttoon

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These late Ensoniq chips were much more common in the guise of Creative Labs Sound Blaster 128 PCI or 16 PCI, AFAIK - so that might get you further.
Those get discussed a lot, e.g. here:
PCI Sound card for Windows 3.11 & Dos 6.22?

I like jumpers.

Reply 5 of 11, by Stretch

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On my 2 retro computers, I could only get the AudioPCI to work on my fast Celeron PC in Windows 98SE's command.com by doing these 2 things.

  • Enabling the parallel port in the BIOS.
  • Enable sharing IRQ 7 in the sound card driver settings, (enabled by default).

I could never get MS-DOS to detect the AudioPCI on my Pentium 2. I can't remember if I enabled the parallel port in the BIOS on my Pentium 2 computer however.

Win11 - AMD Ryzen 9 3900 - 16 GB - GeForce RTX 2060S - Sound BlasterX AE5-Plus
Win98SE - ASRock 775i65G R3.0 - Celeron 2.2 GHz - 2 GB - GeForce FX5700 - Ensoniq 1373
Win98SE - Via Apollo Pro Mobo - Pentium II 233 - 256 MB - Voodoo 3 1000 - ESS Solo-1 1938

Reply 6 of 11, by leileilol

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Cuttoon wrote on 2022-05-06, 15:18:

These late Ensoniq chips were much more common in the guise of Creative Labs Sound Blaster 128 PCI or 16 PCI, AFAIK - so that might get you further.

ES1370 would be Sound Blaster PCI 64. Not the same beast (pre-AC97, 44khz rate, Soundscape emulation capability, Win3.1 drivers)

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long live PCem

Reply 7 of 11, by Cuttoon

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leileilol wrote on 2022-05-07, 00:13:
Cuttoon wrote on 2022-05-06, 15:18:

These late Ensoniq chips were much more common in the guise of Creative Labs Sound Blaster 128 PCI or 16 PCI, AFAIK - so that might get you further.

ES1370 would be Sound Blaster PCI 64. Not the same beast (pre-AC97, 44khz rate, Soundscape emulation capability, Win3.1 drivers)

One of those cheap, soulless and butt ugly PCI cards I only ever used as beer coasters, exactly! 😜

I like jumpers.

Reply 8 of 11, by LSS10999

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Ensoniq AudioPCI (and later Creative ones) need MS EMM386 to work under DOS (other EMM386 may not work correctly with it).

There's actually another hidden requirement for AudioPCI's DOS TSR, that your system must have enough free area in the first 4MB of system memory.
When I tried using an ES1370 on a newer board running MS-DOS 7.1, with MS EMM386 loaded, it complained about that and refused to load, much to my surprise.

But I think if you're running games from a Windows 9x DOS box it should work regardless provided the Legacy part of the VxD driver is installed correctly.

I think both Ensoniq and Creative DOS TSR should work with these sound cards. I also had an ES1371 that worked with both TSRs, on an old compatible system. Should note that:
- Ensoniq TSR only supports up to SBPro. Creative TSR supports SB16.
- Not thoroughly tested but according to some info, only Ensoniq TSR is SoundScape compatible. Creative TSR does not support SoundScape.
- FM/Midi both behave similarly with Ensoniq and Creative TSR. FM is emulated from ECW wavetable which sounds very different.

Reply 9 of 11, by swaaye

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What is the motherboard? You need a chipset from around those times to get the hardware support needed for the ISA emulation the driver does for DOS sound. It's a complex topic but has been discussed thoroughly on here.

And yeah definitely need EMM386 for it to work in pure DOS.

Reply 10 of 11, by Sly_Botts

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See this thread I made. It should work if you do this.

Getting Ensoniq Audio Soundscape (1370) to work in Dos 6.22

It is possible to commit no errors and still lose. That is not a weakness, that is life.

Reply 11 of 11, by Sly_Botts

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I'll see if I can copy the folder with the Dos drivers installed through win 3.1 and find a way to get it to you. It works on Dos 7 but you need to edit your piff file in win 98. I'll give you instructions just can't right now cause I'm at work

It is possible to commit no errors and still lose. That is not a weakness, that is life.