Sierra game synth guide, v3

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Spikey
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Sierra game synth guide, v3

Post by Spikey » Tue Aug 17, 2021 8:06 am

Hey folks,

I posted this in the Facebook group "Sierra Music and Memories" this week after it hit 300 members (come join!).
It's the 3rd revision of my "what Sierra games to play with what synth" guide, and has some extra information for those that seek it, as well as quick navigation (just follow the bold text) for those that want it.

Any questions, comments, or corrections, contact me.

https://docs.google.com/document/d/12B9 ... ue&sd=true

goatmeal1
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Re: Sierra game synth guide, v3

Post by goatmeal1 » Tue Aug 17, 2021 6:15 pm

Thank you for cross-posting it here.

I know you recommend Deemster's SC-55 soundfont in you guide, but I'd like to know your thoughts on EmperorGrieferus's version of the SC-55:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_J8-CgvC-As

Download link to the soundfont is in the description section, along with this information:
This soundfont is my fixed version of Patch93's Roland SC-55 Soundfont v2.2. Some samples were taken from JexuBandicoot527's SC-55 soundfont and Bill90's Masquerade 55 soundfont.
To me, when I play the BAK MIDI files using his SC-55 soundfont, they sound the most like the CD-ROM audio files out of any of the others I've found. Just curious. :)

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Re: Sierra game synth guide, v3

Post by Spikey » Wed Aug 18, 2021 7:33 am

You're welcome my friend.

The CD-ROM ironically isn't how the score is meant to be heard, and I've seen others who, like me, don't consider it superior to the SC-55 originals. It's also not recorded from a SC-55 (AFAIK), so has no relation to any soundfont or SC-55.

I like Demester's because it's no-frills and accurate. It's not trying to sound better or different like Patch93's, which will sound great for some instruments and then totally wrong for others.

If you want a great sounding soundfont, pick any of the zillion out there, and that's a topic for another day, but if you want a small, accurate one that responds to reverb/chorus, pick this one.

I just saw this on the YouTube comments from the guy that made that soundfont, incidentally:
"Most of them were recorded from Sound Canvas VA.
Sounds that sounds different in SCVA were taken from various SC-55 soundfonts."

goatmeal1
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Re: Sierra game synth guide, v3

Post by goatmeal1 » Wed Aug 18, 2021 6:10 pm

Thank you for your insight. You are definitely the right person to ask about these matters, especially where "accuracy" is concerned.

I will give Deemster's SF a try! :)

jaffa225man
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Re: Sierra game synth guide, v3

Post by jaffa225man » Fri Aug 20, 2021 12:02 am

Spikey wrote:
Tue Aug 17, 2021 8:06 am
Hey folks,

I posted this in the Facebook group "Sierra Music and Memories" this week after it hit 300 members (come join!).
It's the 3rd revision of my "what Sierra games to play with what synth" guide, and has some extra information for those that seek it, as well as quick navigation (just follow the bold text) for those that want it.

Any questions, comments, or corrections, contact me.

https://docs.google.com/document/d/12B9 ... ue&sd=true
Yes, thanks again for reposting it here. I have one possible solution to your note about needing to load the queststudios' soundtrack SysEx to enable chorus/reverb, turn the SC-55 off, start the game and turn the SC-55 back on, in order to avoid GS resets: My qmidiroute patch, with its SysEx edit rules can remove GS reset with this in the Input "SysEx" text box (the GS reset):
F0 41 10 42 12 40 00 7F 00 41 F7
and nothing in the Output "SysEx" text box.
The empty Output box, just tells my qmidiroute edit to replace that particular input message with nothing, and deletes the message.

I decided to just create a basic qmr file for you, but chose to also delete GM & GM2 resets, in case they would ever be used in a game. Commas separate each input and output message.
Input:
F0 41 10 42 12 40 00 7F 00 41 F7, F0 7E 7F 09 01 F7, F0 7E 7F 09 03 F7
Output:
, ,
Here's the .qmr:
delete-gs-gm-gm2-reset.7z
(277 Bytes) Downloaded 76 times
Since building qmidiroute on windows isn't possible, I would suggest building and running it on a raspberry pi with a USB MIDI interface. For that, you'd have to have a startup script that runs qmidiroute with the described qmr as its argument, aconnect your USB MIDI IN (probably 20:0, or 24:0) to 129:0 (qmidiroute in) and another aconnect from 129:1 (qmidiroute out) to your USB MIDI OUT (probably 20:1, or 24:1). "aconnect -l" lists your interface's designated port numbers, rather than relying on my guesses.

Perhaps someday, I'll roll out a raspberry pi image with this stuff automated, so fooling around manually won't be necessary, but then I'd also have to include instructions on how to copy over each user's chosen qmr. Unless improvements have been made in raspberry pi accessibility (or the ability to mount the micro-SD card image on windows) even that instruction is daunting.

I am in the middle of weeding out bugs before my next release of new features with qmidiroute and, just so you know, this .qmr isn't going to work with it because, it has a different save format again. The SysEx text box content described above will continue to work, though.

Since that's much more work than switching the SC-55 off for a few seconds, I doubt you'll be trying it anytime soon, but pedantically, it is a software/hardware solution. :)

Edit: On second thought, qmidiroute could replace the reset messages with messages to enable chorus and reverb, but I don't really want to research that SysEx, unless you're really interested.

I hope you're well, and that it may help,

Lucas

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Re: Sierra game synth guide, v3

Post by Spikey » Sat Aug 21, 2021 7:45 am

"I have one possible solution to your note about needing to load the queststudios' soundtrack SysEx to enable chorus/reverb, turn the SC-55 off, start the game and turn the SC-55 back on, in order to avoid GS resets:"
Thanks Lucas, but reverb and chorus is controlled by CC messages, not SysEx. :) The reason to turn the synth off is because of the game sending a GM (?) reset.

jaffa225man
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Re: Sierra game synth guide, v3

Post by jaffa225man » Sun Aug 22, 2021 2:10 am

Spikey wrote:
Sat Aug 21, 2021 7:45 am
Thanks Lucas, but reverb and chorus is controlled by CC messages, not SysEx. :) The reason to turn the synth off is because of the game sending a GM (?) reset.
You're welcome, and the second group of code (and qmr file) I posted already should work to delete the GM reset (which is only SysEx, after all). Now, if the game also sends the reverb and chorus CCs, plain CC value conversion rules could be added too, so that they're never set to zero. CC translation existed in qmidiroute before I even started patching it, so it's definitely doable in its current state.

And, although my soon-to-be-released upgrade includes CC to SysEx conversion, it doesn't for the reverse (SysEx to CC). But now that you've given me a use case and planted the seed, it may not be too difficult to add that too, before I consider it worthy of release again.

Thanks for the knowledge,

Lucas

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