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View Full Version : Sound card for 8 bit isa slot?



moijk
April 11th, 2017, 06:52 AM
I got a couple of 286 portables that I'd love to get sound out of. they got one 8 and one 16 bit isa slot and I need the 16 bit for something else. But since the 8 bit sound cards are extremely expensive I read that some 16 bit sound cards can be used in 8 bit slots. just wonder if anyone know?

XDUR
April 11th, 2017, 02:39 PM
Soundblaster CT4170 works in an XT machine, so I'm sure it will work in an 8-bit slot. Some person on this forum has written and executable for it that automatically sets the correct IRQ values. This needs to be run at startup (autoexec). I have this card now in my 286 machine (in an 16bit slot, but 8bit slot should also work), and it's working perfectly.
You can find the information in this topic: http://www.vcfed.org/forum/archive/index.php/t-38484.html

3pcedev
April 11th, 2017, 02:47 PM
A lot of older soundblasters can work in an 8 bit slot. For example just about every variant of the SB16 only uses the 16-bit slot for the CDROM controller.

If you do a quick search you will find a lot of members have tried this successfully (me included).

Scali
April 12th, 2017, 12:29 AM
Yup, I use a Sound Blaster Pro 2.0 in my 8088 machines. Works fine, except for the CD-ROM interface, but it's proprietary anyway, so I don't use it.

Timo W.
April 12th, 2017, 08:35 AM
For example just about every variant of the SB16 only uses the 16-bit slot for the CDROM controller.
And for 16-bit sound... If you don't need that, you can use it in an 8-bit slot. But you have to make sure that your BLASTER variable is set to reflect a SB 1.x or 2.0, not an SB16.

Scali
April 12th, 2017, 09:27 AM
And for 16-bit sound... If you don't need that, you can use it in an 8-bit slot. But you have to make sure that your BLASTER variable is set to reflect a SB 1.x or 2.0, not an SB16.

As far as I understood, the SB16 can do 16-bit audio with 8-bit DMA as well, you just need to set the extra DMA channel to the same as the regular DMA channel (and the software you use, needs to support that).

keenerb
April 12th, 2017, 10:31 AM
Bear in mind that you don't want to get a PNP SB16 for an 8-bit XT, I don't believe that will work at all.

3pcedev
April 12th, 2017, 01:38 PM
Bear in mind that you don't want to get a PNP SB16 for an 8-bit XT, I don't believe that will work at all.

Correct; don't use any Vibra16 (also badged as SB PNP) variant at all.

I have gotten a Vibra16 to work in a 286 before, although not using an 8-bit slot. It required the use of a 386 emulator as well as the proprietary SB drivers (i.e. adding a SET BLASTER environment variable did not work). I highly doubt these series of card will work in an 8-bit slot.