BASSMIDI Soundfont Compatible MIDI Synthesiser Driver for Windows XP/Vista/7

Over at the VOGONS message forum on the Internet ( http://vogons.zetafleet.com ), forum member "DOSFreak" had previously posted a link to this... figured I'd post it here as well :)

BASSMIDI Soundfont Compatible MIDI Synthesiser Driver for Windows XP/Vista/7 :)

Announcement and discussion -> http://www.hydrogenaudio.org/forums/index.php?showtopic=87639
Download -> http://kode54.foobar2000.org/stuff.php

Directly from the above "Hydrogen Audio" forums announcement and discussion message thread:

This is a new SoundFont-based usermode MIDI system driver for Windows XP, Vista, and Windows 7. It uses the BASSMIDI library by Ian Luck, as the synthesiser.

Features:

* Dynamic sample caching
* Unlimited polyphony
* SoundFont chaining/stacking
* Works on Windows Vista and Windows 7, including 64-bit versions.
* Support for the following controllers & events:

MIDI note events.
MIDI program events.
Channel pressure.
Pitch wheel.
Bank change MSB. (CC#0)
Modulation. (CC#1)
Portamento. (CC#65 / CC#84 / CC#5)
Volume. (CC#7)
Panning. (CC#10)
Expression. (CC#11)
Sustain pedal. (CC#64)
Soft pedal. (CC#67)
Low-pass filter resonance. (CC#71 or NRPN 121h)
Release time. (CC#72 or NRPN 166h)
Attack time. (CC#73 or NRPN 163h)
Low-pass filter cut-off. (CC#74 or NRPN 120h)
Reverb send level. (CC#91)
Chorus send level. (CC#93)
Stop all sounds. (CC#120)
Reset all controllers. (CC#121)
Release all keys. (CC#123)
Mono/poly mode. (CC#126 and CC#127, respectively.)
Pitch wheel range. (RPN 0)
Fine tuning. (RPN 1)
Coarse tuning. (RPN 2)

And presumably if GS/GM2 mode is activated:
Drum key low-pass filter cut-off. (NRPN 14knh)
Drum key low-pass filter resonance. (NRPN 15knh)
Drum key coarse tune. (NRPN 18knh)
Drum key fine tune. (NRPN 19knh)
Drum key volume level. (NRPN 1Aknh)
Drum key panning. (NRPN 1Cknh)
Drum key reverb send level. (NRPN 1Dknh)
Drum key chorus send level. (NRPN 1Eknh)

It also supports GM, GS, and XG reset System Exclusive messages, and the drum channel enabling features of GS and XG when switched into those modes. It also supports GS and possibly XG reverb preset control messages for adjusting reverb time, delay, low-pass cut-off, high-pass cut-off, and level. And chrorus delay, depth, rate, feedback, level, and chorus to reverb send level. It also supports the master volume level message.

Kode54 should be thanked for making this possible. I wrote the installer and configuration app.



...and cut 'n' pastes of what I posted over at VOGONS:

I haven't tried it yet, but that looks EXTREMELY interesting... been saying to/nagging Ian Luck (the author of XMPlay, the XMPlay soundfont compatible MIDI Plugin, and the BASS audio libraries) for quite sometime that he should create a 'global' WinDoze MIDI driver of sorts using the MIDI plugin for XMPlay (the BASSMIDI Synth is essentially that) :)

OK, I installed the BASSMIDI MIDI Synthesiser... and it works GREAT!

From what I could tell, ZERO latency, and it sounds just like XMPlay's MIDI plugin :) Running on a P4 2.666Ghz CPU with 768MB RAM, output was smooth with no glitches or stutters.

One problem though, it seems to completely knock out/disable Jamie O'Connell's "MIDI Yoke" patch driver ("Out To MIDI Yoke: #", "In From MIDI Yoke: #", etc...). I use that driver for various things when composing MIDI music.



(Update) I posted a message over at Hydrogen Audio forums ( http://www.hydrogenaudio.org/forums/index.php?showtopic=87639 ), and the author said that he would see if he could fix the MIDI Yoke problem with the driver :)


P.S. Of course, like the XMPlay MIDI Plugin, it sounds GREAT using my "¥Weeds¥ General MIDI SoundFont v3.0" -> http://www.richnagel.net/#soundfonts <grin> :)

P.P.S. Oh, and of course this MIDI driver can be used with DOOM as well :)

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rfnagel said:

P.S. Of course, like the XMPlay MIDI Plugin, it sounds GREAT using my "¥Weeds¥ General MIDI SoundFont v3.0" -> http://www.richnagel.net/#soundfonts <grin> :)

Please tell me that page is a joke.

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PRIMEVAL said:

Something to look into for my lappy, here...


Yeah, it would be ideal for a laptop, or any other PC without some sort of decent MIDI harware. Since it's built-up from the BASS audio libraries, sound output (the soundfont rendering) should be excellent... much better than Timidity I would think :)

Bucket said:

Please tell me that page is a joke.


Well, if ya don't wanna freakin' download it, -->> I really could care less, or give a flying rat's arse <-- :wink: BTW, where's *YOURS*??? ...yeah, I didn't think so...

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so uh. what does it sound like?

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Another one to add to the collection, works nicely.

One thing I did notice is that it skips past playing the first few seconds of a mus/midi in eternity and odamex at startup, its not much of an issue.. However the timidity windows driver does not have this problem when using soundfonts

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That would depend on what soundfont(s) you use with it. Almost all well-regarded GM soundfonts sound better than the MS synth, regardless of which synth you use them with.

I'm trying to decide whether this thing got in a fight with Adplug/Winamp or whether Adplug just blows on Windows 7. For some reason Adplug wouldn't let me deselect .mid as a supported file extension and I had to uninstall it to use this with Winamp.

One thing that's a bit sucky is you can't plug in VST effects like you can with Synthfont. No customizable reverb for me. :/

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RTC_Marine said:

One thing I did notice is that it skips past playing the first few seconds of a mus/midi in eternity and odamex at startup, its not much of an issue.. However the timidity windows driver does not have this problem when using soundfonts


That's a strange one. Maybe it's because of the dynamic sample/instrument caching... when the MIDI file intially starts to play, the BASSMIDI driver is busy loading the initial samples (?).

If ya want, post a message over in his announcement message thread at http://www.hydrogenaudio.org/forums/index.php?showtopic=87639 (he also has been posting over in Ian Luck's forums; the author of XMPlay and the BASS audio libraries; here -> http://www.un4seen.com/forum/?topic=5337.msg86784 ). He's already replied in both of those threads about the MIDI Yoke problem, and said that he would release a fix within the next few days :)

Aliotroph? said:

That would depend on what soundfont(s) you use with it. Almost all well-regarded GM soundfonts sound better than the MS synth, regardless of which synth you use them with.


Exactly :) My biggest gripe is the MS Synth, although it can be "dressed" up a bit with reverb (e.g. if you have a sound card that supports EAX (Environmental Audio) effects, you can apply some "global" reverb to it).

Aliotroph? said:

One thing that's a bit sucky is you can't plug in VST effects like you can with Synthfont. No customizable reverb for me. :/


Like above, you can tailor it a bit with EAX, but of course one would require a sound card that supported it; and of course, EAX wouldn't be as flexible/editable as VST effects.


My biggest attraction to this thing is how close it sounds to actual EMU-8K/10K/20K hardware (i.e. AWE32/AWE64/SBLive/Audigy/X-Fi/etc...). I've always said that the XMPLay MIDI Plugin for Luck's XMPlay media player (which is based upon the BASS audio and BASSMIDI libraries) was as close as you could get to the sound, without the actual hardware <grin> :)

Hehe, all this thing (as well as the XMPlay MIDI Plugin) would need is EMU's NRPN reverb and chorus MIDI controller support, and one would have a "virtual" AWE32/AWE64/SBLive :)


(edit) P.S. Just read this reply over at another message forum about the BASSMIDI driver:

I just got around to testing BASSMIDI on the laptop, and well, I just uninstalled TiMidity++. :D


<grin> :)

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Got links to soundfonts 256MB or larger?

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Csonicgo said:

what's it sound like? WHAT'S IT SOUND LIKE?


this.
also this.

There's an option to turn off that cheap reverb, right?

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Aliotroph? said:

It only does reverb if the file tells it to.


Yep yep, been part of the General MIDI standard since, when, I dunno... 1984 or so?

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Doesn't want to work for me. No matter whether I run the configuration utility as administrator or not, it won't set the default device to BASSMIDI, just reverts back to MS wavetable after closing/reopening the utility. Yeah I am clicking apply :P

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SlayeR said:

Doesn't want to work for me. No matter whether I run the configuration utility as administrator or not, it won't set the default device to BASSMIDI, just reverts back to MS wavetable after closing/reopening the utility. Yeah I am clicking apply :P


You might wanna post a message over in the author's announcement thread here -> http://www.hydrogenaudio.org/forums/index.php?showtopic=87639 .

BTW, are you running Windows XP, or newer (Vista/7)?

I noticed (at least on my PC, WinXP Pro SP3) that I had to change the active MIDI device from within the Sounds and Audio Devices control panel (Start/Control Panel/Sounds and Audio Devices/Audio/MIDI Music Playback Device) in order for it to "stick". Didn't seem to wanna stay set if I set the MIDI device from within the BASSMIDI driver configuration utilitiy itself.

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Windows 7, which doesn't have any OS MIDI configuration options whatsoever.

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SlayeR said:

Windows 7, which doesn't have any OS MIDI configuration options whatsoever.


The problem that I had with picking the MIDI device in Windows XP, I figured was due to the way that BASSMIDI selected the device (which I assumed was prolly done like that as a workaround for that issue with W7).

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It works for me, but the box in the config tool always shows the MS Wavetable synth. I got the impression it was just not reading the value in when the dialog loaded.

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Mr. Chris said:

Got links to soundfonts 256MB or larger?


Well, don't always trust the size. Some of the ones that big actually suck. The SGM Soundfont is one of my favorites. The "Shadow 1.0" soundfont is also pretty good, though I think you can only get that through torrents anymore.

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PRIMEVAL said:

Well, don't always trust the size. Some of the ones that big actually suck.


Agreed 100%. Here's something that I posted late last month over at the ZDOOm forums (in my "¥Weeds¥ General MIDI SoundFont v3.0" thread):

RFNagel said:

Sorry to dig up this old thread, but...[/B]

Bouncy said:

Your soundfont manages to beat a few I have which are 2 to 5 times as big.



[B]Folks,

I recently (last month) *FINALLY* got broadband out here in the sticks (10MBS)! Needless to say, I've been YouTubing, downloading like a madman, and such, LOL... and more specifically, downloading monster-sized soundfonts.

I'd have to agree with the above quote, with the worst being "Crisis General MIDI v3.0"... that bastard is 1.6GB (that's GIGABYTES!) decompressed, and IM(not so)HO really sounds horrid (reguardless of it's size)!

Anyways, a lot of the smaller soundfonts that I downloaded were relatively nice (of course, not as good as mine IMB[iased]O <grin>), but ALL of them blew away Crisis (even ones as 'smallish' as 80-100 megs or so).

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Awesome, ZDoom based ports have this option when you load it up and set things up with the config.

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Crisis is mediocre at best, has some cool sounds but overall lame. I also bought a 250mb GM soundfont for about 100 bucks and I'm not that satisfied (some of the instruments are even from free soundfonts). That was a bad mistake.

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Some good sound fonts:
- General User
- SGM v2
- Chorium

There's also some sound font named "grass" or "herbs" or something like that. There might have been a link or two in this thread already. :p

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PRIMEVAL said:

Yup, that's the one. There are some good sounds on it, but it's not as impressive as they made it out to be.


Thanks for the info :) Yeah, I had read several reviews throughout the past year that weren't too favorable of it.

Gez said:

There's also some sound font named "grass" or "herbs" or something like that. There might have been a link or two in this thread already. :p


LOL! :)

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