The Hard Stuff: The Roland MT-32 and SC-55mkII MIDI Modules

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5 Responses

  1. patthemav says:

    Gratz on scooping up an original unit. It must be noted though that many games with MT-32 support have their scores composed in General Midi. I’ve found that using VirtualMidiSynth with a proper sound font (e.g. Timbres of Heavon or Fluid R3) can then get you even better results.

    Also some games exploit bugs in the firmware of older models which might break on newer models: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_MT-32-compatible_computer_games

    • Brian Rubin says:

      Yeah, I’ve tried VMS and while I do indeed like it, there’s something about having the original units that’s just thrilling. Thanks for the MT-32 tip as well!

  2. Slayghn says:

    Until about 1992 nearly all midi game music was composed for the MT-32. After that GM/GS became the definite standard and music was composed for the SC-55/SC-88 in mind. Soundfonts are a nice option for GM but far away from being authentic. The Munt MT-32 emulator is the best alternative to a real MT-32 or CM-32L and you have the benefits of both modules minus their bugs and issues. Closest thing to a real GM/GS Sound Canvas would be the not so cheap Roland Sound Canvas VA, a VSTi implementation of the SC-8820 with all it’s sound map modes (SC-55/88/88pro/8820) which can be loaded into a VSTi host application (SAVIHost or Falcosoft’s MIdiPlayer) and fed via a virtual midi cable (loopmidi).

  3. Get a game called Thexder. Use both the sound blaster and the Roland.

    • Brian Rubin says:

      Oh man, I LOVE Thexder, but I never thought to try it with the Roland. Gotta fix THAT. :) Thanks!

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