What sound font is this?

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Opus132
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What sound font is this?

Post by Opus132 »

Recently, i had to dust up old ZDoom for a wad that wouldn't work on GZDoom, and i noticed i really liked the way the music played on ZDoom. I went to check what kind of settings it was using, and i noticed none of the actual MIDI players worked correctly, the only way for the music to work was to set it to "sound system". In the ini file, this appears as snd_mididevice=-1 but i couldn't actually find what it was. ZDoom doesn't come with any sound font of its own, and it's not Microsoft GS Wavetable as it's actually listed and doesn't sound the same.

Here's a comparison between GZDoom (latest version) using the SC-55 soundfont and ZDoom 2.8.1 with this supposed sound system font:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KnP76H7ssOk&t=1s
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qll5pW8WzKA&t=2s

Anybody knows what this is?

I was actually able to make it work under GZDoom as well just by manually editing snd_mididevice=-1 inside the ini file. It works, but the gain must be set really low as even at 100% the volume is so low i have to lower the sound effects to at least 20% then bump the system audio to even get anything close to what i'm getting with ZDoom 2.8.1, and even then it sounds a bit tinnier, all though that just might be because of OpenAL compared to the FMOD used by old ZDoom.

I'd really like to know what this is and if it's possible to actually run it under FluidSynth or the like so i can use it properly on latest GZDoom.
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wildweasel
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Re: What sound font is this?

Post by wildweasel »

My first question to you, honestly, is what kind of sound hardware have you got on the machine you're using? While not common aside from products for audiophiles these days, I would have to imagine that some computers and/or sound cards may still have some onboard wavetable MIDI support, and it could be coming from that.
Opus132
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Re: What sound font is this?

Post by Opus132 »

Right now i'm on a Realtek ALC1220. I also have a FiiO BTR5 installed but it's not connected and i doubt that has anything to do with it. I suppose it's possible it may be coming from the sound card all though it seem strange they would still care in this day and age. If that's the case hats off to Realtek as that sound font is boss.

A friend forwarded me a link to a conversion of the Microsoft GS Wavetable Synth into an SF2 file and it's not even close so that's out. A google search about MIDI and the ALC1220 has yielded nothing so far all though how many people would even care.

If only i could figure out how to up the gain on this thing on any version of GZDoom that uses OpenAL. FMOD cranks this thing to the max and it sounds glorious but i don't want to be stuck with older versions of GZDoom. I tried to bluff the program with something like snd_gain=1 but it wasn't fooled, heh.
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Hellser
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Re: What sound font is this?

Post by Hellser »

I do believe FMOD isn't really using any soundfont whatsoever. But rather the Microsoft GS Wavetable Synth itself. Which has quirks that no other softsynths replicate. MS Synth tries to replicate the SC-55, including sound cutoff and reverb options. Technically, the SC-55 Preset/GZDoom.sf2 that is supplied with GZDoom and the GM.DLS as found in Microsoft's files are nearly identical. It's up to the softsynth to play these soundfonts right.

By way of comparison, here is a real SC-88ST in SC-55 Mode:


Sadly, no soundfont will ever 100% replicate a SC-55. It might have the patches right, but how the SC-55 handles those sounds is a whole different beast. The best we can do is 'get close to it'. Out of all of the softsynths, MS's Wavetable is close to Roland's quirk standards of its time.
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randi
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Re: What sound font is this?

Post by randi »

FMOD has its own MIDI player code that uses the system DLS instruments. So it's the same instrument set as Microsoft's, but it sounds different because it's a different synthesiser.

Also, DLS and SF2 are different standards. It might not be possible to do an entirely accurate 1:1 conversion from DLS to SF2.
Opus132
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Re: What sound font is this?

Post by Opus132 »

I see, so it's just Microsoft GS Wavetable Synth but FMOD plays it differently from OpenAL. All this time and it was just that.

Are there any parameters with OpenAL i can use to make it sound like FMOD? Or any parameters for the Microsoft GS Wavetable Synth in general, like gain etc.
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Player701
 
 
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Re: What sound font is this?

Post by Player701 »

I happen to have an SF2 soundfont that sounds (at least to me) as a perfect 1:1 recreation of the Microsoft GS Wavetable Synth. Not sure where I managed to find it (that was quite a while ago) and whether it'd be legal to share it here, though. I guess I have to ask the moderators for permission, first. If they don't greenlight it, perhaps I could send the file via PM in case anyone wants it.
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Chris
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Re: What sound font is this?

Post by Chris »

Opus132 wrote: Mon Aug 08, 2022 11:06 pm I see, so it's just Microsoft GS Wavetable Synth but FMOD plays it differently from OpenAL. All this time and it was just that.
Differently from FluidSynth or Timidity. OpenAL is just playing the audio stream GZDoom is giving it, and GZDoom would be using FluidSynth or Timidity to generate the audio stream with sf2 soundfonts.

It's possible the difference in sound could be attributed to FluidSynth or Timidity being different from FMOD's synth. FluidSynth isn't known for having the greatest synth (it's decent enough, but could be better), and Timidity doesn't handle sf2 the best (it doesn't support certain features an sf2 can use). But it's also possible for the dls->sf2 conversion to mess the soundfont up, irrespective of the synth quality (either due to a poor or naive conversion, or due to sf2 potentially lacking something the dls uses; it's been a long time since I've looked at the specs, and I don't remember what incompatibilities there may be).
Last edited by Chris on Tue Aug 09, 2022 1:49 am, edited 1 time in total.
Opus132
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Re: What sound font is this?

Post by Opus132 »

Player701 wrote: Tue Aug 09, 2022 1:09 am I happen to have an SF2 soundfont that sounds (at least to me) as a perfect 1:1 recreation of the Microsoft GS Wavetable Synth. Not sure where I managed to find it (that was quite a while ago) and whether it'd be legal to share it here, though. I guess I have to ask the moderators for permission, first. If they don't greenlight it, perhaps I could send the file via PM in case anyone wants it.
I'd certainly be interested in this.
Opus132
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Re: What sound font is this?

Post by Opus132 »

The soundfont provided by Player701 is in fact very close. Some differences still, but it's probably due some differences in FluidSynth compared to FMOD.

I think i'll settle for this for now. Thanks again to Player701 for priving this nice soundfont.

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