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Thread: Tandy 1000E EX + Covox Speech Thing!

  1. #1

    Default Tandy 1000E EX + Covox Speech Thing!

    I thought I'd try an experiment using my Tandy 1000 EX, with one of my Edge-to-DB25 Printer adapters, to see if it worked with a Covox Speech Thing clone!

    My Retro Collection:
    CBM: C64, Amiga 500 x2, 600 & 1200
    Mac's: SE, LC630 & Beige G3
    PC's: K6-III+ 500 System + Roland MT-32 & Tandy 1000 EX 640kb, 3.5" FDD, CF-IDE 4GB HDD
    FS: Brand New Tandy 1000 Adapters

  2. #2

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    Btw folks, I have successfully gotten it to play Sound FX, it just wont play MOD files in any recognisable way, likely due to the lack of horsepower in my EX.
    My Retro Collection:
    CBM: C64, Amiga 500 x2, 600 & 1200
    Mac's: SE, LC630 & Beige G3
    PC's: K6-III+ 500 System + Roland MT-32 & Tandy 1000 EX 640kb, 3.5" FDD, CF-IDE 4GB HDD
    FS: Brand New Tandy 1000 Adapters

  3. #3

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    Thanks to some assistance from Great Hierophant, I now have bi-directional "nibble mode" working on my 1000 EX* via my Edge to DB25 adapter and I'm getting some better results. Programs like Modplay v2 actually recognise my stereo Covox clone properly. I still dont have enough CPU grunt to play mod files properly tho which is disappointing but not surprising.

    I'll try some other experiments this week and if im lucky they'll include an OPL2LPT Module** which is on its way from the EU atm.

    *The pins are near the expansion port and just need a normal jumper placed on them.

    **Adlib on a printer port.
    My Retro Collection:
    CBM: C64, Amiga 500 x2, 600 & 1200
    Mac's: SE, LC630 & Beige G3
    PC's: K6-III+ 500 System + Roland MT-32 & Tandy 1000 EX 640kb, 3.5" FDD, CF-IDE 4GB HDD
    FS: Brand New Tandy 1000 Adapters

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by dJOS View Post
    Programs like Modplay v2 actually recognise my stereo Covox clone properly. I still dont have enough CPU grunt to play mod files properly tho which is disappointing but not surprising.
    You'll want to try Galaxy Player, it is by far the fastest MOD player for 8088-286 machines.
    You can find it here: http://www.dcee.net/Files/Music/Player/glx212.arj

    According to the author, he got 12 kHz mixing rate on his Covox with an 8 MHz turbo XT.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by dJOS View Post
    Btw folks, I have successfully gotten it to play Sound FX, it just wont play MOD files in any recognisable way, likely due to the lack of horsepower in my EX.
    You might have some luck going slower than what you did with Galaxy Player in the video. Like, try 6 KHz.

    Scali: Author may have been fibbing -- I don't think 7.16 MHz NEC V20 has enough power for 12 KHz...
    Offering a bounty for:
    - Documentation and original distribution disks for: Panasonic Sr. Partner, Zenith Z-160 series
    - Music Construction Set, IBM Music Feature edition (has red sticker on front stating IBM Music Feature)
    - Any very old/ugly IBM joystick (such as the Franklin JS-123)

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trixter View Post
    Scali: Author may have been fibbing -- I don't think 7.16 MHz NEC V20 has enough power for 12 KHz...
    I don't have a V20, but I do have an 8088 clone that can run at 7.16 and 9.54 MHz, and a CVX4.
    I could give it a try and see where its limits are.
    Covox will be slightly slower than PC speaker I suppose (you need to use out dx, al, so dx needs to be tied up, where PC speaker can be done with an immediate operand: out 42h, al).

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scali View Post
    I don't have a V20, but I do have an 8088 clone that can run at 7.16 and 9.54 MHz, and a CVX4.
    I could give it a try and see where its limits are.
    Covox will be slightly slower than PC speaker I suppose (you need to use out dx, al, so dx needs to be tied up, where PC speaker can be done with an immediate operand: out 42h, al).
    In practice, out dx,al is faster. Single-byte opcode. So if GLX kept DX out of the loop, it will be faster.
    Offering a bounty for:
    - Documentation and original distribution disks for: Panasonic Sr. Partner, Zenith Z-160 series
    - Music Construction Set, IBM Music Feature edition (has red sticker on front stating IBM Music Feature)
    - Any very old/ugly IBM joystick (such as the Franklin JS-123)

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trixter View Post
    In practice, out dx,al is faster. Single-byte opcode. So if GLX kept DX out of the loop, it will be faster.
    Yea, my assumption is that dx would need to be pushed and popped at least once somewhere, making it slower.
    This is true at least for my streaming player for Covox and PC speaker.

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by Scali View Post
    You'll want to try Galaxy Player, it is by far the fastest MOD player for 8088-286 machines.
    You can find it here: http://www.dcee.net/Files/Music/Player/glx212.arj

    According to the author, he got 12 kHz mixing rate on his Covox with an 8 MHz turbo XT.
    Thanks for that version, I already had it but 12 khz definitely doesnt work on mine.
    Last edited by dJOS; December 18th, 2017 at 01:10 PM.
    My Retro Collection:
    CBM: C64, Amiga 500 x2, 600 & 1200
    Mac's: SE, LC630 & Beige G3
    PC's: K6-III+ 500 System + Roland MT-32 & Tandy 1000 EX 640kb, 3.5" FDD, CF-IDE 4GB HDD
    FS: Brand New Tandy 1000 Adapters

  10. #10

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Trixter View Post
    You might have some luck going slower than what you did with Galaxy Player in the video. Like, try 6 KHz.

    Scali: Author may have been fibbing -- I don't think 7.16 MHz NEC V20 has enough power for 12 KHz...
    Yeah not even 11khz will work on my EX.

    Thanks for the tip, I had tried lower than 11 khz prior to enabling nibble mode and nothing worked .... however now that nibble mode is on, I can play MOD files at 7 khz without issues with Galaxy player 2.12. Anything higher gives garbage output.

    Thanks for your help, much appreciated.
    My Retro Collection:
    CBM: C64, Amiga 500 x2, 600 & 1200
    Mac's: SE, LC630 & Beige G3
    PC's: K6-III+ 500 System + Roland MT-32 & Tandy 1000 EX 640kb, 3.5" FDD, CF-IDE 4GB HDD
    FS: Brand New Tandy 1000 Adapters

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