OPL2 (3 ?) sound for your QL through parallel port

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Derek_Stewart
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Re: OPL2 (3 ?) sound for your QL through parallel port

Postby Derek_Stewart » Wed Dec 20, 2017 11:37 am

Hi,

Just got the kit today:

OPL2LPT.jpg


I will get it built over the CHristmas period and see if it can be interfaced with QL or Q60


Regards,

Derek
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Peter
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Re: OPL2 (3 ?) sound for your QL through parallel port

Postby Peter » Wed Dec 20, 2017 12:14 pm

Maybe stupid question, but what is the use of another sound system? Wouldn't it make more sense to to use the existing QLSSS so applications run on as many platforms as possible?

What is the advantage over QLSSS?


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Cristian
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Re: OPL2 (3 ?) sound for your QL through parallel port

Postby Cristian » Wed Dec 20, 2017 12:23 pm

Derek_Stewart wrote:Just got the kit today:
I will get it built over the CHristmas period and see if it can be interfaced with QL or Q60

Great Derek!


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Zarchos
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Re: OPL2 (3 ?) sound for your QL through parallel port

Postby Zarchos » Wed Dec 20, 2017 12:34 pm

Peter wrote:Maybe stupid question, but what is the use of another sound system? Wouldn't it make more sense to to use the existing QLSSS so applications run on as many platforms as possible?

What is the advantage over QLSSS?


There are many :
- it can be an additional sound system
(in fact for a standard QL, I am tempted to say 'at last here is a sound chip'. Beeps for the QL, and tunes with this new device.)
- OPL has its specific characteristics and sonority and is still much appreciated for these reasons.
- it might be overall faster to play sound through this device, instead of using the QL 'sound capabilities'.
- it might be possible to define it as the new standard, if all QLs and compatibles can access it.
- It is very cheap, that is a HUGELY POSITIVE feature !
- there are thousands of tunes already available to use or play with, and soundtrackers to compose some new ones are available on many machines


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Pr0f
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Re: OPL2 (3 ?) sound for your QL through parallel port

Postby Pr0f » Wed Dec 20, 2017 1:04 pm

Seems the downside is the lack of a parallel port on most QL systems...


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Zarchos
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Re: OPL2 (3 ?) sound for your QL through parallel port

Postby Zarchos » Wed Dec 20, 2017 1:23 pm

Pr0f wrote:Seems the downside is the lack of a parallel port on most QL systems...


Serial to parallel kits exist.


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Peter
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Re: OPL2 (3 ?) sound for your QL through parallel port

Postby Peter » Wed Dec 20, 2017 1:25 pm

Zarchos wrote:(in fact for a standard QL, I am tempted to say 'at last here is a sound chip'. Beeps for the QL, and tunes with this new device.)

No, because the QL has no parallel port! And if a new hardware needs to be designed and manufactured anyway, it could as well be QLSSS compatible.

Zarchos wrote:- OPL has its specific characteristics and sonority and is still much appreciated for these reasons.

Understood. This is the only little point that I can comprehend. But it is very specific personal flavour. Unlikely that many persons with QL background would hear the difference between a sampled sound and a direct OPL sound. Even if I did, not sure I would find OPL better.

Zarchos wrote:- it might be overall faster to play sound through this device, instead of using the QL 'sound capabilities'.

That would only help on the QL, which has no parallel port. The systems which have a suitable port are much faster anyway.

Zarchos wrote:- it might be possible to define it as the new standard, if all QLs and compatibles can access it.

The 'if' clause is not given, unless signifcant new hardware development and production is done. It would open another work area, while we don't even have enough developers to finish the first one.

Zarchos wrote:- there are thousands of tunes already available to use or play with, and soundtrackers to compose some new ones are available on many machines

That lots of software exists for other, non-QL machines, also goes for sampled sound.


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Zarchos
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Re: OPL2 (3 ?) sound for your QL through parallel port

Postby Zarchos » Wed Dec 20, 2017 2:23 pm

I feel very lonely when I read that, as though instead of trying to give something new and cheap a chance, it is better to stay with actual :
- no hardware for a stock QL
- there is some hardware, having more and / or better is sthing to absolutely reject and trash.

Btw the code to play OPL files is explained and detailed just everywhere, as much as the Amiga MOD format.
Converting it to 68000 is not what I would describe as a rocket science job demanding a huge amount of efforts.
As I said, the kits to have serial to parallel conversion exist, they are also extremely cheap.
In short, this board has so many advantages that I do not understand how a warm welcome can be avoided.
35 euros, that's peanuts for what it offers.
Last edited by Zarchos on Wed Dec 20, 2017 2:34 pm, edited 2 times in total.


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Re: OPL2 (3 ?) sound for your QL through parallel port

Postby Pr0f » Wed Dec 20, 2017 2:29 pm

It could be trivial to add hardware for this, but someone would need to write the driver... :-(


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Zarchos
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Re: OPL2 (3 ?) sound for your QL through parallel port

Postby Zarchos » Wed Dec 20, 2017 2:33 pm

Pr0f wrote:It could be trivial to add hardware for this, but someone would need to write the driver... :-(


Not a mammoth task if for non system usage.
Certainly more tricky otherwise, but again we are not talking about sthing undocumented which is going to be a torture to adapt.
Also, I do not think we need it for yesterday : no hurry, to me, on this.
It is more an add on for games or demos, 1st.


Owner of various QLs including accelerated beasts, and also a happy Q68 owner ;)

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