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arachnosoft

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Everything posted by arachnosoft

  1. arachnosoft

    Arachno Music Packs

    I noticed you updated the pack already... many thanks! I'll mirror it on my own Free.fr webspace (replacing the older version) within the next hours :) Agreed ;) I even have a written procedure to put tags in my files, using three different tools sequencially, to ensure all tags are put properly (ID3 v1, ID3 v2.x). While we're on this particular subject: the Duke 3D Arachno Music Pack is only available in OGG format, and, as far as I know, you didn't put any meta tag information in these files. Is there a particular reason for that? I use the same series of tools to add meta tags on my MP3/OGG files, and tags can be set on both formats. Great news! To be honest, I never succeeded in downloading anything from RapidShare...
  2. arachnosoft

    Arachno Music Packs

    When I built the drumkits, I was used to the Standard drumkit of my Creative AudioPCI 128 soundcard (EAPCI2M.ECW soundbank) which had similar sounds for both acoustic and "electric" snares. When I chose Slavo's drums as Arachno SoundFont's standard drumkit, it also followed this trend, and being used to it, I kept it as-is. I actually tried to mix different kick/bass drum and snare combinations afterwards - for each drumkit - but I wasn't satisfied by the results, especially while playing MIDI files which used the two sound pairs simultaneously (snares or bassdrum/kick). I strongly dislike snare mixes like the power snare/standard electric snare combination on the SC-55's Power drum kit. Sounds so wrong to my ears... When you listen to MIDIs, on a SC-55, which use both power kick (C3) and "electric" snare sounds from the Power drumkit (E3), you hear a punchy kick sound combined with the same standard - not to say bland - "electric" snare sound borrowed from the Standard drumkit... While it would sound so much better using the power kick and the real power snare sitting in the "acoustic snare" slot (D3). Listen, for example, to Robert C. Prince's excellent soundtrack from the "DemonStar" game, which uses the Power drumkit almost exclusively: - Grab the original MIDI files from Mirsoft at http://www.mirsoft.info/gmb/music_info.php?id_ele=MTM4NjQ= and play track #3 (entitled "Phazer") on a Roland SC-55: in a solo situation the snare sounds very weak compared to the power kick (and the power snare used on other tracks); - Compare this version to the one you can obtain on a Yamaha synth: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XLf_1p7ESs4&index=3&list=PLolnf4i65EgQwxepll5dl7pm65ZVtbFlg (or Arachno SoundFont itself), and you'll see what I mean. That's why I simply made subtle differences between each sample on Arachno SoundFont, so they could blend together easily in a mix and remain consistent towards the overall drumkit... Although I admit it may sound confusing on some MIDIs, and I can consider finding a compromise to solve this issue. Do you have some example MIDIs on which you felt it could be improved? Don't forget to give me your "reference" synth so I can hear what you did expect. Thanks!
  3. arachnosoft

    Arachno Music Packs

    Thanks :)
  4. arachnosoft

    Arachno Music Packs

    Hello guys and girls! Some great news for Duke Nukem 3D MIDI enthusiasts: Lee Jackson released the full extended version of the famous "Grabbag" theme from Duke Nukem 3D on his website, a few hours ago! More info on his Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/leejacksonaudiocommunity (you'll find the links here) This is the exact same MIDI file which had been used back in 1996, to record the MP3 version of the Atomic Edition CD (using a Roland SC-88 module). So, you can now enjoy this extended soundtrack on your favorite MIDI synth, nearly 20 years after its initial release! Ultimate Doomer already recorded it with Arachno SoundFont and released it on YouTube: http://www.arachnosoft.com/main/arrangements.php?id=ultimatedoomer-duke3d-grabbag-extended-full-version&category=users&from=arrangements&type=youtube Big thanks go to Lee Jackson who listened to his fans, and to Ultimate Doomer who pointed this out! NightFright, I thought you may want to consider adding a recording of this extended MIDI version to the existing Arachno Duke Nukem 3D Music Pack... :) Enjoy!
  5. arachnosoft

    Arachno Music Packs

    You're welcome ;) Feel free to tell me if your downloads were successful. As my Free.fr account is the only one providing enough space to host all the files, I couldn't host them elsewhere. And I know that files hosted by this French ISP are difficult to reach outside of France.
  6. arachnosoft

    Arachno Music Packs

    Well, the Arachno SoundFont Game Music Packs page is now up-to-date: http://www.arachnosoft.com/main/soundfont.php?music-packs Besides the above list, there's now a single page for each music pack: Arachno SoundFont Duke Nukem 3D Music Pack Arachno SoundFont DOOM Music Pack Arachno SoundFont DOOM II: Hell on Earth Music Pack Arachno SoundFont TNT: Evilution (Final DOOM) Music Pack Arachno SoundFont Plutonia Experiment (Final DOOM) Music Pack Arachno SoundFont Plutonia Revisited Music Pack Arachno SoundFont Plutonia 2 Music Pack Arachno SoundFont Icarus: Alien Vanguard Music Pack Arachno SoundFont Hell To Pay/Perdition's Gate Music Pack Arachno SoundFont Chex Quest Music Pack Phew... adding all the game/music metadata (track list, game info, etc.) and updating the whole page layout actually asked me much more time than I thought! I still have to link all the download links I added, to those you gave on this thread. But, until then, the files can be downloaded from my Free.fr mirror, and, of course, from this thread, as I also mentioned it on the music packs' pages. I hope all the links will work, and that I did not make any mistake when referencing them (lots of chance to confuse them with all the OGG/PK3/ZIP/MP3 variants ^^): http://www.arachnosoft.com/main/download.php?category=music-packs Have fun, and thanks for listening! Nice, thanks! Take your time... I'll add any new stuff as soon as possible!
  7. arachnosoft

    Arachno Music Packs

    I was close to mention that somebody already reported this on the other thread... until I found that YOU already reported this on the other thread... :) To be honest, I never wanted to change this bass drum as I simply loved its sound the first time I heard it (I had a subwoofer most of the time). But yeah, I must admit that it sounds too quiet on some tracks like Running From Evil ;) I remember that I already tried to make it louder, but it led to some fairly audible clipping and distortion on the Sound Blaster Live! I had back then, so I kept it as-is. I may try to layer it with a more standard, punchier sound, but I'll have to find which one. I'd not want it to sound too weird. Oh, and BTW... I love your "Rise" unused track from the Plutonia bonus tracks pack ;)
  8. arachnosoft

    Arachno Music Packs

    Just a quick reply to mention that I'll update the Arachno SoundFont website within the next few hours, to cover all the new music packs released by NightFright in January. All packs will be listed in a single page, and each one will have its own page with additional information, such as game data, track lists (with their composers), links to YouTube videos if available, etc. This layout will give an extra amount of visibility for each pack, and should make them easier to find on Google than on a single forum thread. I'll try to provide download links for each pack, as I should be able to host all the files on my Free.fr web hosting mirror, and I'll also add those given by NightFright himself. It'll not be a fast download server for most users (unless located in France or foreign European countries), but it should help spreading the contents without having to rely on ad or subscription-powered services, which can be difficult to reach for some users (although most of them will remain faster). I'll come back here when everything will be ready!
  9. arachnosoft

    Arachno Music Packs

    I appreciate the idea of a separate thread, many thanks! I'll follow both anyway, to be sure to keep my website updated with all your music packs (although you'll always be much faster than me!) Hehehe ^^ NightFright, faster than Sonic the Hedgehog! Thanks ;) Maybe because the Icarus soundtrack uses many "pad" synth sounds and effects (i.e. Star Theme, Crystal, Fantasia...) which are instruments on which I heavily focused when I built Arachno SoundFont, because it's the instrument section on which you can best express your creativity, as they only have to sound deep, synthesized and original, rather than trying to mimic a real instrument. If you listen to the original Icarus MP3 remastered tracks released by the original composers (don't remember where I got them from - maybe on David Shaw's "Tolwyn" website), these instruments also sound cool and original on their respective level tracks. You're totally right ;) But, you know, despite the fact that I built Arachno SoundFont on a Sound Blaster Live!, that I own an enhanced PCI-Express X-Fi card from Auzentech and built a dedicated PC with 4 Sound Blaster cards (X-Fi XtremeGamer, Audigy 2, Sound Blaster Live! and AudioPCI 128), and despite the fact I installed every software SoundFont synth I could ever find (including BASSMIDI Driver, CoolSoft VirtualMIDISynth and SynthFont) to listen to MIDI files with SoundFonts, I still downloaded all the music packs from NightFright, as MP3/OGG files are much easier to use outside of your computer ;) I second that! Trying to tweak Arachno SoundFont to sound good with Heretic was a real pain. It sounds OK, but not as much as I wished overall. Mostly because of the synth strings (an instrument meant to be generic on every MIDI) which often sound flat on Heretic's tracks, with every SoundFont I could try, compared to the FM/OPL-3/AdLib soundtracks that most of us used to play the game with. Thanks!
  10. arachnosoft

    Plutonia 2 soundtrack

    Yeaaah! Thanks! I loved playing Icarus and really enjoyed the soundtrack, with its recurrent musical theme! Love the way it sounds on Level 2 and Level 7 tracks. Eternal DOOM sounds great as well. And Rich F. Nagel (the composer) was one of the first to support and promote Arachno SoundFont on VGMusic forums and the BASSMIDI website ;)
  11. arachnosoft

    Plutonia 2 soundtrack

    To download files from BayFiles (such as the Plutonia packs), I can actually click on the Premium download button and I get the file at high speed without having to download an .exe, although I don't have a paid account... I don't know if this is normal situation, but... shhh! :) I remember that I couldn't do that last month. Don't know why this has changed!
  12. arachnosoft

    Plutonia 2 soundtrack

    I already did that when I designed Arachno SoundFont, actually! :) I chose and tuned the gunshot patch with this track in mind, as I knew that Bobby Prince specifically chose it to reproduce the footsteps of German soldiers. And I thought that the result was pretty decent compared to other SoundFonts or synths (Sound Canvas included) But I also had to optimize it so it could be used as an alternate snare drum on some old (not to say crappy) FM/OPL/AdLib-designed MIDI files, and it was a tricky challenge. Just like with any other instrument, actually. On a sound bank designed for general purposes, like Arachno SoundFont, you're always tied between finding a good-sounding instrument, and finetuning it appropriately so it can still sound decent on most situations, without being overwhelming while played with other instruments in a general MIDI file. On the other side, I also tried to find and use a realistic gunshot patch, and did not find anything satisfying. So I mainly focused on the two previously-mentioned examples. I also had to deal with such a situation with DOOM's E1M5 "Suspense" track, and its guitar fret noises. I never found which sound effect was being emulated here! (no info about it on Doomworld's DOOM music page). On some soundcards (e.g. the Creative/Ensoniq AudioPCI ES1371/VIBRA 128/SB Live! SW Synth), this sounded like human (children) screams, but I don't know if it was the expected effect. But as the guitar fret noise was often being used like it was meant to be on many guitar/rock MIDIs (as fret noises), I did not spent much time on this DOOM track, as soon as I found a sample which sounded decent enough on most guitar MIDIs, while not sounding that weird on DOOM's E1M5.
  13. arachnosoft

    Plutonia 2 soundtrack

    Keeping the DOOM soundtracks outside of duke4.net sounds logical, so I'm fine with this ;) Hehehe ^^ Thought it was some kind of automated formatting applied by the forum, so I didn't bother looking at this... fixed! I actually never understood why did this MIDI was always being screwed up! I remember that I had to edit it as well to restore the bass and sawtooth leads' volumes... Thanks for the feedback! I also noticed that Intermission sounded a little... different from the MIDIs I have here, but... I actually liked that version :) Wow... how efficient! I guess I'll have to update my website soon once again... Thanks!
  14. arachnosoft

    Plutonia 2 soundtrack

    Well, what else can I say... except that you rock! :D So, I've added all your stuff on the Arachno SoundFont website: http://www.arachnosoft.com/main/home.php (news article on front page) http://www.arachnosoft.com/main/soundfont.php?music-packs (the new "Music Packs" section with all your music packs and links to this forum thread/the Duke3D HRP website to get the download links) http://www.arachnosoft.com/main/arrangements.php?id=diamhea-doom2-plutonia2&category=users&type=youtube (direct link to Diamhea's video featuring your Plutonia 2 music pack) I first started by adding the Plutonia and Duke Nukem 3D packs... then I refreshed this forum thread just to read that you added the DOOM packs in the meantime... so I updated the whole pages afterwards :) I don't know if I made a clear enough description of all the music packs. I hope that most people will understand what to do with these files and where to download them! I'll try to mirror your files on an additional provider (such as SendSpace) or add yours as "direct" download links on my website to offer them the visibility they deserve - just like you did with the Duke Nukem 3D Arachno Music Pack by hosting it on the HRP website. Thanks for all your efforts! Looking forward for new stuff from you!
  15. arachnosoft

    Plutonia 2 soundtrack

    Hello guys! I'll soon have some free time to update Arachno SoundFont's webpages with all NightFright's music packs mentioned above (Duke Nukem 3D, Plutonia, Plutonia 2). NightFright, you told us some weeks ago that you could also release a DOOM music pack with Arachno SoundFont: Do you actually plan to release it within the next few days? Just to know if I should wait a few days to update my website with this pack as well. Happy New Year everbody!
  16. arachnosoft

    Plutonia 2 soundtrack

    Actually, the electric guitars are the two instruments on which I spent the highest amount of time, so I don't really see how I could improve them right now ;) I tried tons of samples for these two: real electric guitars with effects, without effects, sampled "famous" synth guitars (like the SC-88 power guitars you can hear on Duke Nukem 3D's "Grabbag" official MP3 from Atomic Edition), amp-driven renditions... nothing was versatile enough to fit as a general-purpose instrument. Either these guitars sounded too "realistic" and were impossible to use with General MIDI files, or either they sounded too bland to give some strength to many tracks. I ended up using 8 different samples mixed together to get these guitars (as described on the Arachno SoundFont documentation). And, as far as I know, most people usually think that they're a huge improvement on those you can usually find on some other SoundFont banks or synths. As somebody pointed out on the ZDoom thread linked by Gez, the SC-8850 has several electric guitar amp effects which sound very good and realistic to my ears, but may remain too "synthetic" for most trained guitarists. Even "professional" virtual electric guitars usually sound "synthesized". Listen to "Legacy of Rust" by Skaven. I remember reading somewhere (his website maybe) that he used a well-known plugin for the electric guitar sound back then (a quite popular one) but I can't remember which one. And, even on this track, the "synthesized" feeling is here... with a paid electric guitar plugin directly designed to simulate an electric guitar! So, it's even more difficult to achieve guitar amp effects with SoundFont synths, which don't offer any integrated "electric guitar" effect, so you can only rely on the samples themselves ;) I'm actually very happy with the Arachno SoundFont electric guitars (but how I could say anything else, hehe!). I released a demo of these presets on YouTube several months ago, if you want to compare them with some famous tracks which aren't from video games: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7cAtUbuQB0g Choirs are very difficult to sample as well, even more if you want both bass (men) and treble voices (women) in the same instrument, like I did for my Choir Aahs ;) The SC-8850 has pretty decent choir samples. I'll try to benefit from them for the next instrument update. Really? It sounds very strange to me, I never noticed it, even with my own X-Fi (although I have an updated EMU20K2, PCIe version) which renders the MIDI file just like other synths, SoundFont or not. Is there any YouTube/SoundCloud/whatsoever link I could check with the original music and the instrument you're missing, to compare it with? It was the case... until powerful software synths like BASSMIDI or VirtualMIDISynth came out in 2010 ;) (hopefully, they were released just before I finished writing the SoundFont's documentation, so I could add information on alternative software synths on it!). I don't really use my X-Fi anymore these days, just BASSMIDI or VirtualMIDISynth alternatively (BASSMIDI for recordings as its rendering is more stable once all instruments have been cached, and VirtualMIDISynth for listening purposes, mainly because of its faster caching mechanism). They both sound the same as they're using the same BASS engine, and they don't suffer from all the exasperating playback issues you can have with *all* hardware Sound Blaster SoundFont MIDI synths (either Live!, Audigy or X-Fi), mainly related to limited polyphony. Although I never thought I'd ever say that back when I was building the SoundFont on my Live! (because software synths available at the time, like sfz or TiMidity++, had incomplete SoundFont support), I'd recommend using these two software synths over any Creative soundcard any day now. Thanks ;) This track sounds better on the YouTube link you've provided, for sure ;) The strings are a mix of acoustic and synthetic presets on this song. It usually sounds good, but it really depends of the "synthetic" threshold applied to the Synth strings on the SoundFont you're using ;) Anyway, Arachno SoundFont's strings could be improved with some better samples in some areas. My SC-8850 often sounds more natural on most MIDIs using string ensembles. But it seems that Blood's MIDI files were composed on a particular synth. Some instruments appear in red on vanBasco's Karaoke Player (meaning that the presets chosen are not from the "standard" GM or classic GS set from SC-55/SC-88) and are not recognized by my SC-8850 or MU1000. I'll have to checkout the rendering of Arachno SoundFont on FluidSynth as well.
  17. arachnosoft

    Plutonia 2 soundtrack

    Oh, and it seems that I forgot to reply to your thoughts about Arachno SoundFont; Although I built it for my own listening pleasure and video game needs (Duke Nukem 3D, DOOM, Heretic...) at first, I sometimes wish I had released it earlier, back when SoundFont was still a very popular format, when huge websites like TheSoundSite or HammerSound were still active. Oh, well. To answer your question, I'll have to take some time to release an update to Arachno SoundFont someday. Because there are some bugs, indeed: - Piano 1 loops are somewhat approximative; - Synth bass 1's Gravis UltraSound part is silent on software synths; - Pizzicato Strings loops are buggy on X-Fi cards (hopefully not on soft synths) - and some other minor issues... I'll have to update it, just to thank all devoted users like you... - because some users actually gave me some very interesting technical feedback on how to fix some stuff... - because I have still-very-cool hardware sound modules (Roland Sound Canvas SC-8850, Yamaha MU1000) and soft synths (Emulator X3) which could provide better sounds for some instruments... If I had to release a new (major) version, I'd probably be to enhance the balance/volume between all the instruments, which is the weakness of my SoundFont. When you listen to Robert C. Prince's or Lee Jackson's tracks with it, compared to the Roland Sound Canvas SC-88 they've composed them with, many instruments sound too loud or too quiet compared to others, and compared to the overall rendering of the Sound Canvas modules, which is probably the reason why some people still prefer them over anything else.
  18. arachnosoft

    Plutonia 2 soundtrack

    Immediately posted a link to the Duke3D HRP website on my Facebook and Google+ accounts, with credits for your Duke3D Arachno Music Pack. I'll make my best to write some stuff about your music packs on the Arachno SoundFont website very soon! Many thanks once again. I knew that I was right to spend so much time building this SoundFont (from 2003 to 2007!), testing it on so many MIDIs afterwards, and writing the huge documentation three years later to get it ready for release. This SoundFont sounds much better on CoolSoft VirtualMIDISynth or BASSMIDI Driver than on hardware Sound Blaster cards, because of their buggy driver support. So, the soundcard you're using to record from softsynths will not make a difference. However, if I could make a suggestion to enhance your music packs... - you should take some time to fill the audio files' "ID3" tags with some basic info (track names, album/collection, composer...) and credits (your name, website...), just to be sure that your files can be identified in case someone would release them randomly on the internet; - if I were you, I would also release an alternative pack with higher-bitrate files. 128 kbit is okay for most people's audio equipment, but the difference with 192/224 or higher bitrates can be heard with higher-end equipment. Of course, keep the 128 kbit packs for lower bandwidth users ;) Please keep us informed if you release any other music packs! I'll try to keep track of your work to reference your packs on my website.
  19. arachnosoft

    Plutonia 2 soundtrack

    Hello guys, As I said on Diamhea's video, thank you so much for using Arachno SoundFont to record this soundtrack! I built it with DOOM music in mind and I'm very glad you're actually enjoying it! I'll have to checkout AIMP as a MIDI recorder, as it seems to speed up the recording process... Did you use an external software/hardware synthesizer to record the MIDI files (BASSMIDI Driver/CoolSoft VirtualMIDISynth/Creative soundcard), or does AIMP come with its own integrated MIDI SoundFont synthesizer? The recordings sound clean without any glitches, that you can often hear with any of the above-mentioned synths when used extensively (not to mention the Sound Blaster cards and their buggy MIDI drivers...) I'll add the YouTube video among all the user-made arrangements I'm listing on my website (http://www.arachnosoft.com/main/soundfont.php?users), but if you want, I can also add ID3 Tags on the MP3s and add the archive as an "official" download link on my website too (I'd host it on an external file hosting service, however). Thanks again for your support!
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