View Full Version : IBM 5170 Sound

July 31st, 2013, 09:17 AM
In your honest opinion what is the best Sound Card that I can put in to a IBM 5170?
Is the Media Vision Pro Audio Spectrum any good?
Or should I be looking for an early version of a Sound Blaster

July 31st, 2013, 10:20 AM
I've used both the Sound Blaster CT-1320 and CT-1350 with good results in my 5170.
The CT-1350 is easier to find and probably cheaper.

I used to have a PAS-16, I think it was on a 386 system. As I recall it emulated
the Sound Blaster...... but for games that had support specifically for the PAS-16,
it produced much better sounds than the Sound Blaster cards.

July 31st, 2013, 02:01 PM
I use a Sound Blaster Vibra16 CT-2800 with a Nec XR-385 attached to the WaveBlaster port, it has Roland MT-32 emulation and it sounds really good.


August 4th, 2013, 01:45 PM
In your honest opinion what is the best Sound Card that I can put in to a IBM 5170?

That depends: What are you planning on running on your 5170? If the answer is "I don't know", I would go with a Sound Blaster 2.0 or Sound Blaster Pro for compatibility and easy setup (no software, only jumpers).

If you have a more specific answer, I can give more specific recommendations.

August 4th, 2013, 03:01 PM
I would like to play old games on my 5170. I would also like to play midi files on it.

August 4th, 2013, 03:56 PM
For old games, a Sound Blaster (1.0, 1.5, or 2.0) will do you just fine. A stock 5170 isn't fast enough to play Wolfenstein 3-D at a fun framerate, so there's no need to bother with a Sound Blaster Pro or better.

Playing MIDI files is different. The very best way to play MIDI files on any DOS-era computer is to put a Roland SCC-1 card in the machine (first GMIDI soundcard) and they all sound amazing. However, if that is too expensive for you, then I amend my previous recommendation and bump it up to a Sound Blaster Pro 2 or a Sound Blaster 16 (or Pro Audio Spectrum), so that you can have fairly-decent MIDI playback over the stereo OPL3 FM chips on those cards.