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 Post subject: Re: Buying Roland MT-32 Sound Module
PostPosted: Thu May 20, 2010 10:38 pm 
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Well.

I'll just give the extra ones to you then. :lol

No seriously, I think I actually might end up with two first gen Roland MT-32 within the week. The first one being really expensive (but does include original box, manual etc. [wtf?]) and the other one being really cheap.

Dammit I never have patience enough for these auction things.

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 Post subject: Re: Buying Roland MT-32 Sound Module
PostPosted: Fri May 21, 2010 2:40 pm 
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Spikey wrote:
Well.

I'll just give the extra ones to you then. :lol

No seriously, I think I actually might end up with two first gen Roland MT-32 within the week.


No seriously, don't get my hopes up like that. :x

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 Post subject: Re: Buying Roland MT-32 Sound Module
PostPosted: Sun May 23, 2010 6:28 am 
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By the way, does the SC-55 have special messages on the screen for each game as it is loading? I kind of like those on the MT-32... and I also like how it shows the different sounds it is using throughout the game... sometimes I'll glance down during a cool-sounding scene just to see what it says... i've seen things like "windchimes" and "honkytonk"

Also, if I get an SC-55 in the future, would I have to change my DOSBox config file every time I wanted to switch being playing MT-32 games and SC-55/General MIDI games?


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 Post subject: Re: Buying Roland MT-32 Sound Module
PostPosted: Sun May 23, 2010 6:54 am 
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pbpb33 wrote:
Also, if I get an SC-55 in the future, would I have to change my DOSBox config file every time I wanted to switch being playing MT-32 games and SC-55/General MIDI games?


No, since both modules would use the same MIDI-USB interface, or the same joystick output, I presume. You would have to change your MIDI cable from one module to the other, but each game remembers its setup in the config file and DOSBox would use the same "Midi device" setup without knowing which module you have at the end of your cable.

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 Post subject: Re: Buying Roland MT-32 Sound Module
PostPosted: Sun May 23, 2010 6:14 pm 
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Haradan is correct. The only thing you'd have to be on top of is making sure the games you want to play with the SC-55 are set up correctly to use Sound Canvas or General MIDI for their music devices. But once that's done you never have to change it again.

And no, the SC-55 does not have LCD display messages like the MT-32. Although, I believe it does display instrument names.

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 Post subject: Re: Buying Roland MT-32 Sound Module
PostPosted: Mon May 24, 2010 12:22 pm 
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So far I haven't had this problem, but are there any Sierra (or other) games with digitzed effects AND MT32 support that don't let you choose MT32 (or General MIDI) for music -AND- choose Sound Blaster for speech? In other words, which games off the top of your head give you only one selection for all sound in the game?

So far I've gotten digitized sound effects and MT-32 music in both SQ1VGA and Conquests of the Longbow, no problem... the install program menus in both those games have separate selections for speech and music.


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 Post subject: Re: Buying Roland MT-32 Sound Module
PostPosted: Mon May 24, 2010 1:49 pm 
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Games that support digital sound effects usually just contain low-quality samples of their MT-32 counterparts (except for very few games like SQ1VGA which have screams and such). But there isn't a game that has digital effects and MT-32 support that doesn't allow you to have both (except SQ3 with it's "Where Am I" line because it's not shipped with a SNDBLAST or MTBLAST driver, strange as that is. I have the correct drivers that will make it work, though). Even games that only allow you to choose one driver will have selections like: Adlib, Sound Blaster, MT-32, MT-32 with Sound Blaster, etc.

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 Post subject: Re: Buying Roland MT-32 Sound Module
PostPosted: Tue May 25, 2010 2:05 am 
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Is your King's Quest II SCI remake going to have MT-32 support? It would be cool... one of the first games written for the MT-32 in a loooooong time. Would it also support General MIDI/SC-55? What about digitized sound effects?


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 Post subject: Re: Buying Roland MT-32 Sound Module
PostPosted: Tue May 25, 2010 2:34 pm 
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Yes, it will be written for the MT-32 as well as Adlib, Tandy 3-Voice, and PC Speaker. It will also have a few digital sound effects but not much. The original SCI0 engine wasn't capable of very much. Digital sound effects are ammended to an existing MIDI sound resource file and the sound file has to be 8-bit, mono, and 11 Khz. The resulting sound resource must also be below a certain size limit. It's quite limited.

It will not support the SC-55. But you can get a fanmade driver that interprets the General MIDI instruments based on the MT-32 instrument names. It's not perfect and you'll lose some sound effects, but it's better than nothing. But I'd ultimately recommend the MT-32 or Adlib/Sound Blaster over the SC-55 because of full compatibility and there is no GM driver that takes advantage of the digital sound effects for this particular version of the SCI engine. So you'll only get digital sound effects with the MT-32 or Sound Blaster driver.

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 Post subject: Re: Buying Roland MT-32 Sound Module
PostPosted: Wed May 26, 2010 12:58 am 
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MusicallyInspired wrote:
Yes, it will be written for the MT-32 as well as Adlib, Tandy 3-Voice, and PC Speaker.


That is great news! I'm really loving the MT-32 music in those old games, by the way... especially the bar and dance music in Codename: Iceman, SQ1VGA and the PQ2 music. It seems the MT-32 really shines with the synth-ey sounding, 80's-ish electronic sounding dance music... I don't know how to describe it, but it sounds especially great in these games. By the way, Codename: Iceman has some great beach sound effects during the Tahiti beach scenes at the start... there is a very realistic-sounding wave sound that went along well with the animated ocean water as is gently comes to the shore... helped a lot with the atmosphere. Something like that might be cool with some of th KQ2 beach scenes.


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 Post subject: Re: Buying Roland MT-32 Sound Module
PostPosted: Wed May 26, 2010 10:45 pm 
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That IS great to hear, MI, I can't wait.

Well. I won two MT32 auctions, one of which is definately a first gen. MI, do you know what the differences are between a first and second gen, or did you already expplain that one somewhere in the thread? Can't really find it right now.

Right now, I'm busy recording the entire 7th Guest midi soundtrack with my SC-55, which is quite a larger project than I imagined.

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 Post subject: Re: Buying Roland MT-32 Sound Module
PostPosted: Thu May 27, 2010 12:25 am 
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This is the MT-32 Wiki page which shows the differences in MT-32 generation models. A first gen is usually better for Sierra games (except for a couple only, but you wouldn't notice a difference if you had a first gen). However, a first gen has the Buffer Overflow problem that a second gen wouldn't have. But it's not a huge issue and is easily circumventable on newer computers with DOSBox cpu cycle-configuring.

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 Post subject: Re: Buying Roland MT-32 Sound Module
PostPosted: Thu May 27, 2010 12:49 am 
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Spikey wrote:
Well. I won two MT32 auctions, one of which is definately a first gen. MI, do you know what the differences are between a first and second gen, or did you already expplain that one somewhere in the thread? Can't really find it right now.


I think a Roland CM-32L would be an interesting option should you ever consider getting another MT-32 in addition to a first gen, given that a few games take advantage of its extra sounds, but I never saw one of these modules for sale anywhere. Did you ever happen to come across a CM-32L? It doesn't have the screen on front, though.... and, like MI said, too few games might even take advantage of the extra sounds to make it worth it... though I'm not sure exactly how many or which games would support the extra CM-32L sounds.

Also, check out this list of MT-32 compatible games. Note the games with the (3) next to them... the games with that (3) designation apparently work best with a first generation:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_MT ... uter_games

Also, I wonder if the (1) designation in the above list of games means that the game would take advantage of the extra sounds found on a CM-32L.


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 Post subject: Re: Buying Roland MT32 Sound Module
PostPosted: Thu May 27, 2010 1:17 am 
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MusicallyInspired wrote:
Yes anyone can get whatever they wish, but the VSC isn't free and isn't near as good as a real sound canvas. Whatever higher quality it has over the Microsoft GW synth is not worth the price.


When the comparison is to Microsoft GS synth, VSC is the same as an SC-55.

I finally got around to doing an audio comparison of VSC vs. SC-55 mkII. The differences appeared basically two places: VSC seemed to be more likely to have clipping or frequency overload (whatever you call it; quantization effects?) at the high end. The real SC-55 mkII did not have that. This could be a problem with my testing or sound card, but it is very likely a genuine VSC issue. Second is that drums/percussion sounds are either different/reduced samples, or are somehow handled differently (perhaps volume?). My test MIDIs were queststudios.com LSL1GM.MID, and TOONGMA.MID. The honkytonk in 21GOLD2.MID (uncertain origin, part of an unfinished freddy pharkas soundtrack collection) sounds better in the SC-55 mkII, so some more complex instruments probably are better on the real SC.

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It's just as well to use the Microsoft GS synth until you get an actual Sound Canvas.


This is true. My main point is that Roland was not selling junk when they released Virtual Sound Canvas, neither did they intend VSC to be a 100% replacement for their real hardware.


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 Post subject: Re: Buying Roland MT-32 Sound Module
PostPosted: Thu May 27, 2010 4:01 pm 
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Just out of curiosity, Spikey. How much would you ask for one of your MT-32s if you were willing to sell it?

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 Post subject: Re: Buying Roland MT-32 Sound Module
PostPosted: Thu May 27, 2010 7:18 pm 
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If they are exactly the same and both have no troubles, I'll make you a good deal ;)! It's you, after all, who inspired me to even rediscover all this goodness.

I'll let you know. One is being shipped in from Belgium right now, and the other one I'm picking up personally in Berlin, Germany in two weeks.

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 Post subject: Re: Buying Roland MT-32 Sound Module
PostPosted: Sun May 30, 2010 3:36 am 
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So I got the first Roland MT-32. I don't really get the SysEx sending thing; I keep getting 'Exc. Checksum Error' upon loading the games or trying to send SysEx files with utilities.

Edit: OH NOES the cable I bought (X-midi tab 1x1) can't handle SysEx for the Roland MT-32it seems. Dammit.

It seems the M-Audio USB Uno is the better option.

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 Post subject: Re: Buying Roland MT-32 Sound Module
PostPosted: Sun May 30, 2010 9:46 pm 
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That's strange, AFAIK SysEx messages are standard MIDI protocol for any MIDI device. But well, try the M-Audio Uno, it works perfectly for me (using a CM32L, mind you).

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 Post subject: Re: Buying Roland MT-32 Sound Module
PostPosted: Sun May 30, 2010 10:49 pm 
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It does work partially. I do get the text messages etc., but some of the instruments are a total mess.

Well, there's definately more people having the same problem with the Xmidi / Roland MT32 combination, which became clear to me after googling. A person named Clarence Sparrow ( :lol ) said this in a review on Amazon:

"Not good for SysEx on Roland MT-32, March 10, 2010
By Clarence Sparrow "cs" (Cali) - See all my reviews

Amazon Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: EMU Xmidi 1x1 USB MIDI Interface (Electronics)
I used this device with the Roland MT-32 on Windows XP. With either the built-in Microsoft driver or the latest EMU driver downloaded from their website, SysEx messages were not conveyed to the MT-32, resulting in music playing with incorrect instruments. Currently, I am using the M-Audio Uno sans driver and having no problems."

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 Post subject: Re: Buying Roland MT-32 Sound Module
PostPosted: Mon May 31, 2010 5:14 am 
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Yep, that's the USB-to-MIDI cable I'm using with my MT-32/Windows 7 setup. ( http://www.m-audio.com/products/en_us/Uno.html ) Sure, there are much cheaper cables for sale online, but I got that one because I knew from reading different forums that it would for sure work with the MT-32.
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 Post subject: Re: Buying Roland MT-32 Sound Module
PostPosted: Mon May 31, 2010 8:14 pm 
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Yeah well, when I bought that other cable, I didn't even know I was going to own the MT32 so soon. Shoot me.

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 Post subject: Re: Buying Roland MT-32 Sound Module
PostPosted: Mon May 31, 2010 11:28 pm 
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By the way, it seems like some games take advantage of the MT-32 sound effects much better than others. I love the music and the sound effects that were done by Mark Seibert. He is listed in the SQ3 credits as the guy who did the sound effects for the game... and I wish he had done the MT-32 sound effects for all those EGA games of that era. So far, from what I've tried so far, I think SQ3 is the game that benefits the most from the MT-32. It also seems like the composers got more familiar with the MT-32 over time... the LSL2 music is nice, but seems a bit basic-sounding.... by LSL5 it sounds rich and full.


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 Post subject: Re: Buying Roland MT-32 Sound Module
PostPosted: Tue Jun 01, 2010 5:37 pm 
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So....the cable arrived superfast and it WORKS! I'm so happy. BassPizzMS, am I glad to see you show up on my MT-32 screen instead of a random harpsi. It worked on my XP machine without installing drivers or anything, transferring SysEx now smoothly without errors.

It confirms the Xmidi / Roland MT32 is no good a combination at all. Also, I was confused at first, because (I didn't really read it that well) the 'MIDI OUT' cable of this M-Audio cable actually reads 'TO MIDI IN'. So I thought I read 'MIDI OUT' and was like 'Easy, this goes in the MIDI IN!' Of course, it didn't work, because that cable read 'TO MIDI OUT'.

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 Post subject: Re: Buying Roland MT-32 Sound Module
PostPosted: Sat Jun 12, 2010 9:05 am 
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Spikey wrote:
So....the cable arrived superfast and it WORKS! I'm so happy. BassPizzMS, am I glad to see you show up on my MT-32 screen instead of a random harpsi. It worked on my XP machine without installing drivers or anything, transferring SysEx now smoothly without errors.


Which games have you tried so far with the MT-32?


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 Post subject: Re: Buying Roland MT-32 Sound Module
PostPosted: Sat Jun 12, 2010 3:24 pm 
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I love my MT-32. Does anyone know if you can hook the box up to a macintosh with the same usb/midi cable? How do you get it to work with mac?

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