SNDH 4.3

Well once again we peer under the bonnet of the latest SNDH release (available at http://sndh.atari.org ) giving more information to you inquisitive types.

Firstly as I mentioned at DHS this release comes in two parts. So lets start with actual new stuff :-

  • Relix Demo by 505 : The vast proportion of new tunes in this update are attributed to 505. This guy is a composing machine. Thankfully all his tunes are written in easily convertible formats which ease the SNDHing process. Oh how I wish I'd used those rare SSD tunes he gave me at Outline 2009. Now they are not so rare :)
  • Big Alec: Punish Your Machine : k:\rips\bigalec\to_do ...... welcome to Grazey's hard-drive. I so hate "to_do" directories. For yonks two Big Alec tracks have sat there. The actual tunes were easy the rip, the hard part is that both tunes are woven into the full screen / sync of the main menu and best part of creation screens.  On a number of occasions I've looked at them, then moved on to something easier. Finally I bit the bullet and with the assistance of Evil and GGN I succeeded. So now finally you have the proper 15khz digi drums with the tunes rather than Gunnar's chip drum equivalents.
  • Quartet : Good to see my Quartet 2 SNDH utility continue to prove useful. This time we have some tunes used in Sewer Hedgehog's rare Hibernation demos 1 & 2. I used to be contact with Hedgehog so please get in touch if you ever read this Mr Stafford guy :) We also have new tunes from Edd The Duck (aka Vobrien), Rob "Quartet" Povey and a guy named "X The Beermat"!
  • Nostalgic-O update : When this demo was released Tao sent me all his Magic Synth tunes in SNDH format. However to the ultra geeky YM folk it was apparent the songs were not identical to the tunes from the demo. You see Frank added an extra Sid voice to many of them as he was not constrained by Leonard's cycle counting demo screens. I recently decided that for completeness the archive should include the original demo tunes (with 2 Sid voices) in addition to the 'enhanced' tunes (with 3 Sid voices). After all, the SNDH collection strives to be an historic archive!
  • The Ancients :  I still find it incredible that I continue to discover many un-ripped tunes from well known prolific composers, examples in this release include : Ben Daglish, Barry Leitch, Holger Gehrmann, David Whittaker, Karsten Obarski and my personal favourite and ex-Cnetter Ant Lees!
  • Paul Summers : Look at my previous blog entry for info regarding Paul's tunes.

Now to the explanation regarding the massive number of SNDH fixes.

Back in August we received an email from Ben of The Overlanders, the coder of SC68  I first met him at the ST News Conference back in 2000. Since then we have had occasional contact discussing various topics regarding ST music. In recent conversations between Ben, myself and Evil we have debated the way forward for the SNDH archive, database and file structure. This debate is continuing as we speak and hopefully we should have more information to share in the next SNDH update.

In relation to updating SC68 Ben has created some very useful tools which will greatly assist in SNDH maintenance. One of his tools can interrogate the whole SNDH arcihve (4000+ files) and identify duplicate tunes from the actual musical notes! and any tunes which crash.

For example

Did you know Cloud Kingdoms and Warlock The Avenger (Both by David Whittakeruse exactly the same music file? Cloud Kingdoms uses all 10 sub-tunes whereas Warlock only uses sub-tune #7 for its title tune. Ben's program told us exactly that! Or that Backlash crashed at song end and didn't loop correctly ? Again Ben's program highlighted this bug.

His program also identifies duplicate files, hence the additional "Deleted" category in the full SNDH 4.3 read me file.

That's why we have many fixes in this update...and... why we will probably have a similar number in the next update!

So thanks to Ben for his hard work, fixing and more importantly the unearthing of some unreleased Jess tunes. Oh,  and fixing all my old Jess SNDH's - making them system compliant and giving the tunes their proper titles.

I think that will do for now.....

Grazey

Paul Summers

Thanks to Stefan Lindberg for pointing me in the direction of :-

http://www.codetapper.com/amiga/random-rants/defaced-credits-in-the-end-sequence-of-sdi/

This has given me valuable composer information which created a chain reaction culminating in  the following tunes having correct info's or ripped :-

Predator - credited to Paul Summers

Everton FC - credited to Paul Summers , Mike Chilton removed

P47 Freedom fighter  - credited to Paul Summers , Mike Chilton removed

SDI  - credited to Paul Summers

Sonic Boom - credited to Paul Summers

Fighting Soccer - New Rip - credited to Paul Summers

Matrix Marauders - New Rip - credited to Paul Summers

Stryx - New Rip - credited to Paul Summers

that just leaves Super Hang On in the Source folder. I need to investigate that driver more closely looking for similarities with SDI. Though I'm pretty sure it is also by Paul Summers.

Update

Even though we have had no update recently there's still a hive of activity going on behind the scenes!

As most of you YM freaks will probably already know, that prolific chipper 505 has released Relix with his Paradox and DHS buddies. 107 beauties grace this demo, all of which will be in the next update!

In other news, we've had much dialog with SC68 creator : Ben of the Overlanders. Consequently there's quite a lot going on with the SNDH database. Hopefully I should have more detailed explanations soon!

Grazey

SNDH 4.2

Howdy, here is more in-depth information regarding the latest SNDH 4.2 release (available at http://sndh.atari.org )

  • THALION SOUND DEMO : This demo featured some nice digi tunes as well as new chip musics at that the time e.g. Bach The Future. The tunes are in the same format as the Union demo hidden screen so converting was straight forward :)

  • GARY WHEATON TUNES : Shapeshifter Budgie UK tunes are notoriously buggy. Luckily I stumbled across one Gary's demos which had his complete music collection in one file. Therefore I've updated all the old tunes with ones from this demo. The demo also featured new tunes not already in the SNDH archive :)
  • ROGGIE TUNES : Thanks to Tufty for pointing me in the direction of 40+ quartet tunes by Scottish composer - Roggie of the Slaytanic Cult.
  • XyNo Saurus TUNES : Now and again we get emails out of the blue. Here's one such occasion. So we present XyNo with some fantastic Musicmon / Maxymiser tunes :)
  • 505 TUNES : Evil unearthed some un-used 505 tunes. How dare they stay unknown, not any more!
  • FIXES : Big up's to efy and Pavel who keep me busy identifying bugs!
    • Ivanhoe : Fixed sub songs looping
    • Gary Wheaton : Fixed buggy replayers.
    • Backlash : Fixed player crash.
    • Hate: Fixed crash
    • Rambo III : Fixed silent songs
    • Deuteros : Fixed title name
    • In Eighty Days Around The World : Fixed crash and also found a Mad Max digital tune! Which is now included in the archive :)
    • Pacmania : All sub-tunes now included.
    • Projectyle: All Quartet sub-tunes now included.
  • MARTIN IVESON TUNES : Many moons ago I ripped the tune from Core's Wolfchild. At the time I presumed it was composed by 4-Mat of Anarchy (Matthew Simmonds) - due to him using an identical player for 4-Mat's other ST tunes. However I received an email from Matt advising he didn't compose the tune. Since then the tune has slept in the unknown folder. Recently I emailed Martin Iveson the composer of the Amiga Wolfchild tunes. He confirmed the tune was indeed written by him so his one and only ST tune is now correctly identified :)
  • TAO TUNES : We all know just how amazing Tao tunes are! Well a while ago Frank pushed the STe to its limits by updating his Magic Synth software to use DMA sound. I've finally converted these to SNDH. The SNDH uses the full capabilities of the Falcon if you possess such a beast. NOTE: Currently Winjam does not play these tunes correctly, however they sound fine on a real STe/Falcon.  I've also included the original single SID tunes from Songs That Make You Go Hmmm 2, these were later updated into 2 SID voice tunes in the Steps demo.
  • X32 TUNES : God I love these. Good old GGN wrote a XBIOS 32 searcher program which sifted through thousands of MSA's and ZIP files for such ancient tunes. The results are included in this archive. Click if you dare! A fore warning, we've updated the searcher to find STOS music files so you know what to expect in SNDH 4.3 :)

That's all for now..... please give feedback and see you again in SNDH 4.3. Expect major things to happen in the next update!

Grazey

Tao Tunes

I had a debate with Tao in 2000 regarding some of his earlier tunes. As his Magic Synth player became advanced he added more Sid voices to his tunes. So by the demo "Steps" the tunes featured two Sid voices. He decided to update his old tunes using the new player.

I've now decided to include the original older tunes in the next update as the aim of the SNDH archive is to be the definitive ST chip music resource on the internet.

hopefully a release is imminent however currently working away from home so my ST time is limited :(

Mad Max digi tunes

Someone asked on Facebook who composed the tune use on Medway menu #101

I assumed it was a normal Mad Max chip tune, but on loading the menu it was an exotic digi tune! I recognised it straight away - a digi tune from the Thalion Sound Demo!

I was going rip those tunes ages ago but forgot! Anyway all 5 Soundmon tunes are now in the next update :)

SNDH Updates

Well just back from the Outline party in the Netherlands. Ripped quite a few new tunes whilst I was there as well as doing some demo coding for a screen which should be released at the ST News party in 2015!

We've had quite a few SNDH submissions in the past weeks including a batch of musicmon tunes from an unknown Canadian composer!

I've also stumbled over a fantastic PD archive which has many old Music Studio tunes to convert..... so expect a rather large update soon!

For those interested the PD archive can be found at :-

http://www.page6.org/st_lib/st_lib.htm

Grazey

To Merge or not to Merge.... that is the question

A while ago I started merging SNDH files into one large file. So for instance, A Prehistoric Tale  is actually 7 separate SNDH files all merged into one (including the digi-drum title)

So to the question, should I continue to do this for games which feature both digi and sound chip music. In the first instance I'm thinking of the games Xenon 2, Turrican and Dan Dare 3. At the moment these games features two separate SNDH's one with the chip music and the other with the digi music.

Views please....

SNDH 4.1

This is my first SNDH blog entry where I add details and snippets about the release.

V4.1 breaks another mile stone, with the 7000 sub-tune target surpassed! Quite a feat and one  which I never imagined would come.

Ok lets start with some information about the new tunes in the update :-

  • M.U.D.S. (Mean Ugly Dirty Sports). This game by Rainbow Arts was originally released on the Amiga and PC. An ST conversion was planned, work had begun but for unknown reasons it was shelved mid development. Luckily Jochen Hippel had already converted Chris Huelsbeck's AmigaTFMX tunes. In 2010 he sent me a ZIP file with lots of old tunes. Lo and behold an executable file containing MUDS was included. Conversion was a little tricky due to the driver exclusively using address registers and the user stack pointer. Expect the executable on Pouet in the next couple of days. Whilst converting I noticed the music driver was also used in Turrican hence its inclusion in the archive as well! Note: the tunes use a substantial amount of CPU time, so much so, only speedy machines Mega STe & Falcon are fast enough to play the songs within SNDPlayer. On a side note, I expected the same driver to work with Z-Out, Quik & Silva  and Turrican 2, but Jochen slightly modified his player code. Expect these tunes in the next update!
  • Music by Gary Wheaton. Many moons ago (2002!) GGN emailed me listing tunes not included in the SNDH archive. Some of these were tunes by the prolific Budgie UK composer Gary Wheaton, finally they have a public airing, was it worth it?!
  • Silly Venture 2012 certainly delivered in the release stakes. As you would expect, all the tunes are now in the archive including the exotic Checktrakk tunes.
  • New Exotic Sample Player! Over the years there has been two distinct paths for ST music collectors, SNDH for chip lovers and Fading Twilight for MOD followers (no scooters in sight!). I must admit I've never really had an affection for MOD's apart from the classic RSi , Kefrens or PHA Amiga tunes. However there are tunes, which so far have not been in either collection. We are talking about exotic digi tunes. Well this omission is no more. Evil has created an SNDH sample player, the first fruits of his labour include :- Starglider,  Mewilo and Into the Eagles Nest. Expect more in the next update, I'll look at Bomb The Bass's remix of the John Carpenter classic first!! Xenon 2.
  • B.I.G. Demo Digital Department. How the hell have these tunes remained un-ripped for so long? Rectified in.... ahem... 2013. Player wasn't too flashy and all the tunes use the same sample file, I've decided to split them into separate SNDH files although I could have easily have had one 40kb file with sub-tunes. The driver is very similar to the B.I.G. Demo chip tunes with the C64 note format conversion.
  • More Quartet. The SNDH 2 Quartet utility was used once again to SNDHify more tunes. Game tunes to enjoy include Advantage Tennis and Cadaver. We also have lots of conversions by Scott R Lemmon, who was a US sysop. Sadly I learnt he passed away some years ago.
  • Mr Coke was nice enough to give me the source to his tiny music driver when I met him at Outline 2012. GGN has un-TASM'd the tunes which are now in SNDH format.
  • Pavel Puchala and Lotek sent me many XBIOS 32 tunes. These were perhaps the earliest Atari tunes as they use the in-built TOS routines. The quality is not the greatest but they deserve their place in the archive.
  • The final tune worth mentioning is Arkanoid digi-drum music by Jochen Hippel. Tao of Cream brought the tune to my attention. It was used in a cracktro by TEX for the aforementioned game. Once again Jochen converted the C64 note data, this time from Martin Galway to the ST. What makes this tune really special is that, in my opinion, it's the first to feature digi-drums. It precedes both Bad Cat and the Super Neo Show which as of now were thought to be the first examples of such tunes. It was not an easy patch as the drums are not played with the MFP or HBL!

Ok that's enough of my thoughts, hope these behind the scene witterings are interesting!

Grazey