VOGONS

Common searches


First post, by borgie83

User metadata
Rank Oldbie
Rank
Oldbie

Hi everyone!

I'm new to this forum and have read several forum posts regarding getting sound to work in dos using PCI sound cards but so far I'm unable to find anything regarding my issue. I'm hoping that if we can work together to solve my issue it may also help many others out there.

First up, here are the system specs:

Asus P4P800 SE motherboard using an ICH5R Chipset.
Asus ATI X800 Pro Graphics Card
Sound Blaster Live 5.1 (Not Value) Sound Card
Pentium 4 3.4Ghz CPU
Kingston 1Gb Ram (2x512mb) DDR400
Windows 98 SE and Windows XP Pro dual boot.

Everything has been setup and works perfectly in both windows 98 and xp.

No graphics or sound issues whatsoever (obviously in windows not dos). All drivers are also completely up to date.
Sound Blaster dos drivers are the latest 2000 not 1999 drivers. Installed off the sound blaster live 5.1 installation disc.

Now this motherboard does not have DDMA or NMI routing but using Rayer's SERR Patch I've managed to enable NMI routing on the motherboard which is fantastic! But....I've tried several different configurations in AUTOEXEC.BAT and CONFIG.SYS but I cannot get sound to work in Dos 7. Real dos mode not windows 98 dos box.

I've gotton further than most on this issue as I've managed to get past the "is sound blaster emulation enabled" error message. I open SBEGO.EXE from the Sound Blaster Live's dos drivers folder and it detects my address, dma and irq settings but then hangs the system or resets the computer. I believe it has something to do with EMM386 or the STACKS setting in my CONFIG.SYS file. The reason I say this is that I've only gotton this far when editing these two lines of the CONFIG.SYS file. Different changes results in different results eg not being able to detect the sound blaster emulation at all or detecting it but not detecting the address,dma or irq settings. Obviously again in SBEGO.EXE. At least now SBEGO.EXE can detect the sound cards settings. And before anyone suggests anything regarding conflicts with IRQ's I'm way past this and there are no conflicts. I've also tried moving the Card around to different PCI slots and also changing the IRQ from 5 to 7. I'm so close to getting this working. It's just a matter of using the right lines in AUTOEXEC.BAT and CONFIG.SYS.

I've attached photos of my settings for your reference.

Thanks in advance 😀

Attachments

  • Filename
    image.jpg
    File size
    1.81 MiB
    Downloads
    No downloads
    File license
    Fair use/fair dealing exception
  • Filename
    image.jpg
    File size
    1.36 MiB
    Downloads
    No downloads
    File license
    Fair use/fair dealing exception
Last edited by borgie83 on 2013-09-19, 13:32. Edited 2 times in total.

Reply 1 of 49, by Jorpho

User metadata
Rank l33t++
Rank
l33t++
borgie83 wrote:

Now this motherboard does not have DDMA or NMI routing but using Rayer's SERR Patch I've managed to enable NMI routing on the motherboard which is fantastic!

It does not seem reasonable to state that you are "so close to getting this working" if this is your primary accomplishment. (I should try that patch, though.)

At the risk of stating the obvious, I would suggest stripping everything that you don't need out of your autoexec.bat and config.sys for starters; most of the lines you have in there are already redundant. Get a simple test game working first with a bare minimum configuration and then worry about putting other things back in.

Reply 2 of 49, by borgie83

User metadata
Rank Oldbie
Rank
Oldbie

Hi Jorpho and thanks for the reply. Was honestly not expecting to hear from anyone so quickly considering how long people have been working on this issue.

And I agree with you regarding your comment. I have just been getting just a little excited lately seeing some progress as initially I had got as far as most others. That being that the sound blaster live emulation wasn't being detected at all. At least now it seems to recognise it but then, as stated previously, hangs or resets the computer. This occurs in SBEGO.EXE and also if I try to start a dos game. Most hang on the loading screens. The computer also sometimes hangs in the game setups when I go to select a Sound Blaster card from the list of available sound cards. That Rayer's patch seems to have helped a bit. I'd provide the link to his website but I'm not sure I'm allowed to post links on vogons?

Whats strange though is that editing the STACKS line has various results. Setting it too high doesn't detect the sound emulation at all. Same thing goes with setting it too low. Taking the line out all together results in the "is sound blaster emulation enabled" error message. Does anyone have any recommended STACKS settings?

I'm not at home to edit the AUTOEXEC or CONFIG files so I'll have to do that tomorrow night.

Admittably, I did initially try running this with minimal lines in the AUTOEXEC and CONFIG files but that was before I found the Rayer's SERR Patch. So it may just work. Either way, I'll be sure to let you know.

Thanks again.

Reply 3 of 49, by borgie83

User metadata
Rank Oldbie
Rank
Oldbie

Ok, so I finally got around to testing this with minimal lines in the AUTOEXEC.BAT and CONFIG.SYS files. After removing all the non essentials, basically only leaving HIMEM.SYS and EMM386.EXE to load, I went to load SBEGO.EXE from the Sound Blaster Live's Dos driver folder and it gave me an error message regarding STACKS overflow and suggested I edit the CONFIG.SYS file. Everything I try seems to be coming down to this damn STACKS line in the CONFIG.SYS file. I've tried using the following,

STACKS=9,256
STACKS=9,512
STACKS=9,128
STACKS=64,512 (Max allowed)

I've also tried editing the SYSTEM.INI file under the [386Enh] heading, edit the MinSPs=9 to match the STACKS in the CONFIG.SYS file with no luck either.

If I use any settings above 9, SBEGO.EXE gives me the "is sound blaster emulation enabled" error message.
If I use any settings from 9 and below, my sound blaster emulation settings are detected but after this the computer hangs or resets depending on how she's feeling...

If anyone has got Sound Blaster Live Dos sound emulation working on an older motherboard, I'd love to know what your CONFIG.SYS and AUTOEXEC.BAT settings are.

Reply 4 of 49, by borgie83

User metadata
Rank Oldbie
Rank
Oldbie
Filename
image.jpg
File size
700.17 KiB
Downloads
No downloads
File comment
SBEGO.EXE
File license
Fair use/fair dealing exception

Oh and here is a photo of my SBEGO.EXE screen after it has detected the Sound Blaster Emulation settings. In this Pic the computer has frozen forcing me to have to do a hard reset.

Reply 5 of 49, by Jorpho

User metadata
Rank l33t++
Rank
l33t++
borgie83 wrote:

If anyone has got Sound Blaster Live Dos sound emulation working on an older motherboard, I'd love to know what your CONFIG.SYS and AUTOEXEC.BAT settings are.

An older motherboard requires no exotic configuration in the CONFIG.SYS and AUTOEXEC.BAT for Sound Blaster emulation. It pretty much just runs, as long as you have EMM386 loaded.

Reply 6 of 49, by borgie83

User metadata
Rank Oldbie
Rank
Oldbie

I would've thought the same regarding using an older motherboard but on my other Windows 98 system I have a older motherboard with an ISA Slot and when I inserted the Live card in that PC and installed the latest drivers the same error message came up in SBEGO.EXE. And that's with EMM386 and HIMEM loaded. That motherboard has a VIA chipset though so I'm not sure if that makes any difference.

I'm surprised that after all these years no one has created custom drivers to get this working. Similar to how DosBox uses sound blaster emulation.

Reply 7 of 49, by MaliceX

User metadata
Rank Newbie
Rank
Newbie
borgie83 wrote:

I would've thought the same regarding using an older motherboard but on my other Windows 98 system I have a older motherboard with an ISA Slot and when I inserted the Live card in that PC and installed the latest drivers the same error message came up in SBEGO.EXE. And that's with EMM386 and HIMEM loaded. That motherboard has a VIA chipset though so I'm not sure if that makes any difference.

I'm surprised that after all these years no one has created custom drivers to get this working. Similar to how DosBox uses sound blaster emulation.

Tell me about it. From what I remember, it was pretty darned faithful to the SB16 sound when played through games..

Reply 8 of 49, by Jorpho

User metadata
Rank l33t++
Rank
l33t++
borgie83 wrote:

when I inserted the Live card in that PC and installed the latest drivers the same error message came up in SBEGO.EXE. And that's with EMM386 and HIMEM loaded.

You are running SBEINIT.COM before SBEGO.EXE, right?

borgie83 wrote:

That motherboard has a VIA chipset though so I'm not sure if that makes any difference.

VIA chipsets specifically and Sound Blaster PCI cards are known to have serious problems. I'm a bit fuzzy on the details, but see for instance:
http://www.realworldtech.com/via-soundblaster-1/
http://www.realworldtech.com/via-soundblaster-2/
http://web.archive.org/web/20010628064615/htt … t133a-1-en.html

I'm surprised that after all these years no one has created custom drivers to get this working.

Well, there's MPXPlay.

Similar to how DosBox uses sound blaster emulation.

DOSBox has an entire OS running underneath it to take care of the actual hardware.

Reply 9 of 49, by borgie83

User metadata
Rank Oldbie
Rank
Oldbie

Yes I'm loading SBEINIT.COM. Loads through AUTOEXEC.BAT. And yes it loads fine...well at least it says it does.

Thanks for the links btw. Very informative read.

I'll be sure to check out this MPXPLAY. Never heard of it before.

In the mean time I have been experimenting with different BIOS settings but I'm not having much luck unfortunately. Tried setting PNP to enabled, tried assigning PCI/IRQ 1-5 to IRQ 5 and also 10....10 being where the SBLive is currently assigned, again tried changing the emulation IRQ between 5 and 7 and also setting these two IRQ's to reserved in the BIOS, tried enabling/disabling Pallet Snooping and lastly I even got desperate and tried using the onboard AC97 audio. Hmmm...

Reply 10 of 49, by borgie83

User metadata
Rank Oldbie
Rank
Oldbie

Btw, has anyone tested the PCI Diamond MX300 dos sound blaster pro emulation using this motherboard or on any pentium 4 motherboard without isa slots?

Reply 11 of 49, by King_Corduroy

User metadata
Rank Oldbie
Rank
Oldbie

Apparently you and I are at the same impasse, I would be really interested to see if you can get the SB Live PCI card to work. I have a Sb0200 and I can't for the life of me get DOS games to detect it. Works great for windows applications though. So ironically I am running DOSbox on windows 98. 🤣

Check me out at Transcendental Airwaves on Youtube! Also wtf, why are whoppers so good?!

Reply 12 of 49, by borgie83

User metadata
Rank Oldbie
Rank
Oldbie

King_Corduroy, yeah it's very annoying! I've tried everything as you can see from above. I've also got a diamond mx300 pci sound card which I haven't got around to testing as yet. It has sound blaster pro dos emulation. I didn't really want to use it though as this pc is dual booting with windows 98 se as well as windows xp pro and the diamond mx300's xp drivers are far from stable. What brand/model motherboard are you using?

Reply 13 of 49, by King_Corduroy

User metadata
Rank Oldbie
Rank
Oldbie

I'm using a Sony Viao PCX-RX860 so no idea what the board is but it is a 1.6ghz p4 with 512mb ram and 3 or 4 pci slots. I was basically asking the same thing in the windows section and eventually someone said the quickest fix is to toss the SB live card and go buy a SB PCI 128. So eventually that is most likely what I will do (Since the Live! card only cost 5$).

Check me out at Transcendental Airwaves on Youtube! Also wtf, why are whoppers so good?!

Reply 14 of 49, by borgie83

User metadata
Rank Oldbie
Rank
Oldbie

Hi, I was unaware the PCI 128 had dos sound blaster emulation? Could you please tell me more about this. You've spoken to someone who actually has this card working fine in dos using a pentium 4 motherboard? If this is the case I'll happily swap out my live card for a 128. Even though the live is the better card.

Reply 15 of 49, by gerwin

User metadata
Rank l33t
Rank
l33t

Around the year 2000 I used both the SB PCI 128 and later the SB Live! cards for everything. Because that was what was available and seemed OK. They seem mediocre now. A bit below Yamaha and Aureal.

It comes down to this:

SB PCI 128 is a rebranded and slightly modified Audio PCI card originating from the Ensoniq company. With modified AudioPCI based legacy dos drivers to emulate SB16, Horrible FM Music, Passable General Midi Softsynth based on ECW soundbanks. Requires EMM386 in pure DOS.

The newer SB Live! is mostly hardware originating from the EMU company. But they adapted the same AudioPCI legacy drivers for it. FM music was told to improve a little. The rest is the same for DOS.
There are some SB-Live! models that are incompatible with some SB-Live! drivers. My first SB-Live! refused to install in windows 98 with the Windows Dosbox legacy features, and I returned it for another PCI 128. Maybe it was a rare problem, but I remember it well. Later I used other SB-Live! models which did install with all features.

--> ISA Soundcard Overview // Doom MBF 2.04 // SetMul

Reply 16 of 49, by King_Corduroy

User metadata
Rank Oldbie
Rank
Oldbie

Yeah I have now bought a Packard Bell Platinum 55 which is in mint condition. I was using it simply to transfer files to my PCjr by shoving the 5.25" drive in it but now I'm trying to get it to work properly so I stuck in that Sound BLaster Live! OEM card and it works great under windows, but once again DOS games cannot detect it and when run under DOS it does not function. I think this card must just not be compatible since I have tried every suggestion I could find. 🙁

I know the real version of the PCI128 works because my father had a Packard Bell 55 also when I was a kid (Unfortunately it was tossed about 5 years ago) and he had a PCI128 in it. It was probably my favorite computer to use for DOS gaming because the midi was phenomenal. 😁
(At that time I had never heard a Roland though. 😜 )

The problem with Sound Blaster is all these off brands. All the strange OEM and Value cards that look almost identical to the original card, it makes it very hard to tell which will work.

Check me out at Transcendental Airwaves on Youtube! Also wtf, why are whoppers so good?!

Reply 17 of 49, by borgie83

User metadata
Rank Oldbie
Rank
Oldbie

@King_Corduroy, yes creative did release many different models which was quite annoying. It basically means that if you don't know much about the card you're wishing to purchase then you're going to have to do a little research first to find the appropriate model number.

Regarding the PCI128, I'm under the impression that all creative PCI sound blasters will only work if your motherboard supports NMI. So regardless of it being a PCI16, PCI64, PCI128, PCI512 or a Live it's not going to work unless you have the right motherboard. Your previous working PCI128 may have had a different motherboard in it than the one your trying to use with your live.

In my experience anything newer than a socket 370 board is going to give you trouble with PCI Dos sound emulation. I now prefer to stick to slot 1 440BX chipset boards for my retro builds.

Reply 18 of 49, by King_Corduroy

User metadata
Rank Oldbie
Rank
Oldbie

Yeah which means it should work in the Packard though since it is a Pentium 1 133mhz with 16mb ram, a proper vintage machine. Which is why I said that I'm thinking that the OEM Sound card may simply not support SB16 emulation under DOS.

Also he had put a different board in yes, it was some form of Aopen Dual processor board from the early 90's, still you would think the sound card would work fine on the original Packard Motherboard. Although that may be why he upgraded the machine, but he says it was all to get Soda off road racing working. So of course he put in a video card as well. 😜

Check me out at Transcendental Airwaves on Youtube! Also wtf, why are whoppers so good?!

Reply 19 of 49, by swaaye

User metadata
Rank l33t++
Rank
l33t++

What you really want to do is get an ISA sound card for that Pentium machine. You will have much more reliable results and it will most likely sound better, particularly FM synthesis. The Creative/Ensoniq DOS PCI sound driver has terrible FM quality and the wavetable synth isn't exactly super either. It's also all done in software and on a Pentium that's not gonna be good.