=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=APPLE II MUSIC & SOUND FORUM CONFERENCE LOG April 10, 1991 10 PM ET Topic: Starting Your Own Band Forum Leader

: Joyce Madden (AFL JoyceM), Forum Assistant: Gene Koh (AFA Gene) Forum Consultants: Greg Dib (ELECTMUSIC), Ed Rosenblatt (AFC Eddie), Lindsay Hough (LindsayGS) Copyright (c) 1991 America Online All Rights Reserved =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=AFL JoyceM Welcome to the Apple II Music & Sound chat - our discussion will be on NoiseTracker - the new FTA music program for the GS. AFA Gene will be our host this evening...Gene, the floor is yours :) AFA Gene Hi all... well first I'd like to point out, if y'all aren't aware yet, that a spanking new version of NoiseTracker has recently been released (9 days ago) and is now available in our New Files library. It is version 0.5. I haven't played around with it much yet, but it's supposed to fix a lot of the little bugs in 0.3 (the first version we had online). NoiseTracker also includes the ability to directly import "modules," a term used for a certain type of Amiga song file which has become popular among PC users using the SoundBlaster sound card. Now, via NT, these "MOD" files are accessible by the GS. We expect to see a lot of activity on this end as far as ports from the PC and Amiga go. Note that you should be able to go straight to the PC music forum and download any recently uploaded MOD songfiles (there was a bug in the first wide release of the PCAO software, however, so a bunch of files with dates between around March 1991 and September 1991 may not download properly. Note that to use these PC MOD files, you'll have to rename the downloaded file "MOD.xxxxxx" if you want it to show up automatically in NT's "open" dialog box. (On the PC, all MOD files are named "xxxxxxxx.MOD" instead.) Also, if the files are packed with ZIP compression, you'll need a program from the Communications Forum called AGATE -- it's a terminal program that includes the ability to unpack ZIP files. Now, I guess the best thing to do would be to talk about our favorite songfiles... there have been a few complaints, in fact, that people were not being "descriptive" enough in their file descriptions for uploads in describing the songs. AFC Eddie AFA Gene AFC Eddie AFA Gene AFC Eddie ? GA ed Once a MOD file is unpacked with Agate, is a file type change needed? Nope, since all that NT looks for is the "MOD." being the first four characters in the filename. OK, Thanks!

Deanna7332 Question... JonL7 AFA Gene Can you list some of the features of Noisetracker? (you don't even need that "MOD." if you want to type the name in directly.)

Deanna7332 Did any of these mod files have anything to do with FTA's "Module A" AFA Gene Sure Jon, right after we answer Deanna's question. Deanna, you mean "Modulae?"

Deanna7332 Yes, that's it. AFA Gene Modulae was a demo written by FTA last year. (i'll get to you in a sec Doors). It used SoundSmith v0.95 for all it's music. There is no connection between MOD files and Modulae by FTA.

Deanna7332 Throughout the demo it said "Loading modules" AFA Gene Those "modules" are not the same as Amiga soundfile "modules" -you see, what Modulae really was was a "stringing together" of a bunch of neat little tiny demos that FTA had written. So they called each little demo a "module" and thus the entire demo as a whole, "Modulae" (fancy plural of module?) Thank you. :)

Deanna7332 Ok I understand. AFL JoyceM Latin, Gene :) AFA Gene

The term "MODule" from the Amiga comes from the idea that all the stuff needed to play the songfile (all the instruments + the sequence file) are included into one file, the "module." Gene, I have tried to d/l some recent uploaded MODs in the PC music area and still the problem exists. As I understand it, the problem was fixed VERY recently (correct me on this Joyce) and files uploaded as recently as early November still might not work depending on the version of the PCAO software that the uploader used.

TheDoors1 AFA Gene

AFL JoyceM Actually, Gene...I was under the impression that it had been, but if Doors is still having a problem, then it must not be fixed. AFA Gene TheDoors1 AFA Gene What date was the file you tried to d/l, Door? umm 11/17, around there hmmm.... well i can tell you one thing... if it didn't work, don't waste your time again later... the problem is in the Apple software's method of d/lling files, and there are no plans to upgrade the Apple AO software.

AFL JoyceM I will endeavor to get an answer to that PC downloading problem/question :)

ThomasK63 TheDoors1

i have a quick question... what can you use to unpack amiga mod files? On the PC side, that is. Agate Thomas

ELECTMUSIC Doors... what happens on after downloading.. Deanna7332 If it's LZHed you can't unless you have an IBM or PC/Transporter. AFA Gene TheDoors1 If GS-ShrinkIt doesn't have that ability, i don't think there exists any such utility on the GS. What do you mean Elect?

ELECTMUSIC After you download the file... where do you encounter a problem? TheDoors1 ok, you know when you download the file and at some point in the download the file starts to appear on your screen. That's when I cancel it. I am sure soething good can be made w/out resorting to Amiga files Yes, Doors, I believe the problem is with the PC software it was UL'd with. yeah Eddie. Amiga MOD files are typically compressed using LHarc. uncompressed several on my Unix machine at school. good time for someone to make a lharc unpacker... I've

ThomasK63 AFC Eddie TheDoors1 GNO Tim ThomasK63

AFC DYAJim someone might be ;) GNO Tim AFC Eddie AFA Gene JonL7 AFA Gene Several people are already Can't wait, Jim! Jon, did you have a question? The features of Noisetracker :) Oh yes... okay, here goes, in a nutshell, from most important to least: * * * ability to import MOD files ability to import Soundsmith files ProDOS 8 based

AFA Gene

* virtually no editing abilities (not a feature but important to know)

AFC DYAJim :) AFA Gene * forgot: and the most important feature of all, the ability to hold instrument files in regular system RAM instead of DOC RAM, allowing for instruments far beyond the regular 64K limit found in ALL other GS music programs. I'll buy that! I have another question...when you're ready. GA Doors ok..is it true that NoiseTracker will take in soundsmith files and play them more clearly Well, as far as "what you hear," yes there is a definite difference with some instruments. It does NOT play the sounds more "clearly," but it just plays them in a different way. What many people seem to like about this "different way" is that sustained instruments (i.e. instruments designed to be played in a loop to simulate a long held note) seem to work better (or perhaps simply the way they were originally intended to work). I see w/soundfile ?

ThomasK63 TheDoors1 AFA Gene TheDoors1 AFA Gene


Deanna7332 Which takes up more space - MOD or NT AFA Gene

Deanna, it depends a few things, such as how big the sequence is, how many instruments you have, etc. Once you have a lot of assorted files, it'll probably average out to be about the same give or take a hundred blocks on your HD. So it basically depends on whether you prefer to have your instruments separate or not.

Deanna7332 Does playing quality differ with either one ? AFA Gene AFC Eddie AFA Gene AFA Gene Nope. It's exactly the same either way. Loading time is the same too. Can NT save songs as MOD files? Nope. It has options for Open and Close module, but these are still inactive. If there are no more questions, I'd like to talk about which NT files out there are the "hottest," since this info could be useful to many users who are interested in downloading NT/MOD files. My personal favorite is "Lambada," which is supplied by FTA with the program but is available separately on America Online.Everything about this file is really impressive except perhaps the sound quality of the horn-ish melody instrument. What about y'all, what are your favorite NT files? AFL JoyceM Gene, there is a classical song for NT, but can't remember the name, but it is good.

AFC Eddie

I like Dragnet!

ELECTMUSIC So do I Ed TheDoors1 I like Seven something

Deanna7332 My most favorite of all mod files is Pleasure Principle AFC Eddie <--appreciate's Greg's taste!

AFL JoyceM :) AFA Gene Deanna, i assume you got that from a local board?

Deanna7332 I got it from the PC forum here. TheDoors1 I saw it there also

Deanna7332 I think under "Pleasure" AFA Gene Would you be able to upload it here? If it's really that good, we ought to have it available directly in our oun NT lib here (BTW folks, we will be releasing a new NoiseTracker software library soon!) What a Forum!!!

AFC Eddie

Deanna7332 That sounds great! AFL JoyceM Gene, do you think it will be possible for synthLAB files to be converted to MOD files? AFL JoyceM MOD files? AFA Gene I doubt it, Joyce. The formats are so diametrically opposed in their entire basis of their file formats that it wouldn't be worth the time for a programmer to develop such a convertor.

Deanna7332 Isn't it possible to move the mod file from the PC forum to our music library? AFA Gene Nuzz But..... it might be worth the time for a MIDI File Format to MOD convertor, since these two formats are more widely accepted. they have nothing better to do Gene

ELECTMUSIC Gene.. some interesting similarities with DTune and NTracker AFA Gene They lose the file, tho, Deanna. :)

AFL JoyceM In what way, Greg? ELECTMUSIC Both Prodos 8 Deanna7332 Shhh they won't know a thing :) ELECTMUSIC I also believe Bill uses a shuttling of sound data between Doc

Ram and Ram. AFC Eddie Interesting, Greg.

ELECTMUSIC Thats how he gets some of the excellent instrument quality AFC Eddie But Diversitune has that one distinction: MIDI input.

AFL JoyceM Deanna, we would greatly appreciate it if you would upload that 'Pleasure' song to our library :) ELECTMUSIC Agreed Ed.. one of the factors FTA doesn't like to incorporate into their programs. Deanna7332 I'll u/l it tonight if possible. AFL JoyceM Thanks :) AFC Eddie Thanks, Deanna!

AFL JoyceM I will send Bill B a copy of NoiseTracker + some MOD files...to see what comments we get from him (will send when I get back). AFC DYAJim What ever happened to that diversitune upgrade that was talked about ? ELECTMUSIC That would be interesting Joyce AFC Eddie Bill apparently still working on it, Jim.

ELECTMUSIC I am sure he would appreciate the Prodos 8 AFC DYAJim good.. AFL JoyceM Jim...RSN....he was hoping by Christmas (this year), but he is soooo busy with his job, who knows? AFC DYAJim Oh yeah, I noticed the speed calcuation in NT .5 is inaccurate :) AFC DYAJim I recall he has set a lot of Christmas projected dates :) ELECTMUSIC He was one of the first "Free Tools" experts in breaking all the rules for economic sake. AFC DYAJim like for the vaporware DT inst editor like 2 years ago. Deanna7332 Are there any Christmas Mod or NT songs? AFC Eddie Oh yeah, Diversi-Editor!

AFL JoyceM I know, Jim - but that I know he has been working on. AFC DYAJim he projected Christmas for it, and it never came :) AFA Gene Not yet in AMS, but hopefully the Holiday Contest will change all that. :)

AFC DYAJim I look foreward to any upgrades.. AFL JoyceM Not that I am aware of Deanna - you have some? Deanna7332 Nope sorry. here hint, hint

I was hoping there were some that could be u/led

AFC DYAJim I'll be breaking out the xmas tune book rsn.. I should be able to midi a few :) (which rules out nt) AFL JoyceM Question... AFC Eddie It would be more appropriate to have a converter from Appleworks spreadsheet to MOD than from MIDI!

AFL JoyceM If I got ahold of an Amiga song (MOD) disk...how would I convert them for here? AFA Gene You mean an Amiga-formatted disk?

AFL JoyceM Yes AFC DYAJim Ack.. methinks you need an amiga and a null modem cable or a modem. AFA Gene Methinks Jim is right

AFC DYAJim LOL!! Design your music in the spreadsheet then import to NT :) IT might actually have better editing?!! :) AFC Eddie Right! If I had them upload to me, would that

AFL JoyceM Me thinks he is right. work? AFA Gene

Yep; should work like a charm.

AFC DYAJim Yah.. as long as they're coming from an amiga AFL JoyceM Great....I will work on that when I get back (making note now).

AFL JoyceM Gene, will you get some of those files (NT) sent to that area tonight? If so, I will leave the needed message :) AFA Gene That's all I have planned for tonight's chat, Joyce. Yep, I'll move some files right now.

AFL JoyceM Thanks... AFL JoyceM Then we should have our NoiseTracker Library by end of the week in AMS :) ELECTMUSIC Gene... quick question: disk? Are you launching NTracker from a 3.5

AFL JoyceM Okay, guys...I will see you all the week of December 11th (may the 4th) as I am off on vacation.

AFA Gene AFC JohnC

Yep greg Where are you going?

ELECTMUSIC Do you encounter out of memory problems AFL JoyceM Night all...and Gene, thanks for an excellent chat and great explanations of NoiseTracker. Nuzz AFC Eddie AFA Gene AFC JohnC Joyce, I have good news for FutureSound owners. SoundConvert will support it in the first release Great, Mike! Greg, i always keep my RAMdisk at 0 when using noisetracker. Not only are Mike...SoundConvert...released? When can we get SoundConvert, Mike? and FutureSound

AFL JoyceM Great, Mike. :) AFA Gene AFC Eddie Nuzz

there a couple of bugs with memory management, but if you're loading in a MOD file that's really big, NT will eat your RAMdisk. Sounds good. The manual is being "layout". Release date should be about 1st week of Dec

ELECTMUSIC Tnxs Gene AFC JohnC YES.......WTG Nuzz!!!!!!!!

Deanna7332 Yes, why is there on some MOD files a stop somewhere in the middle ? Deanna7332 That's really frustrating! AFL JoyceM Mike, leave me E-Mail on when and how I can send your the $$ to get it. AFL JoyceM Again...night all Nuzz gee John, I had to do something to explain the delay :)

ELECTMUSIC Thanks Gene for a GREAT chat! AFC Eddie AFA Gene AFA Gene AFC Eddie Yes, Gene! Great!

Thanks Greg, 'night! thanx, see y'all later :) --------------------- Log Off-----------------------