The awe 64 has 32 voices of hardware wavetable, and 32 voices of software wave table (64 voices total). The midi sound of this card is incredible. I have yet to hear another sound card with as true a sound as this one in midi.
The awe 64 is backwards compatable with the awe 32, and most dos games made within the last 5 years support the awe 32, and will use this setting for wavetable. If it does not, you can adjust the settings of this card to use general midi with the 330h address that Mole was talking about. This is done through creatives configuration manager. I have been using this card happily for 1 1/2 years now.
You should be very happy with this choice. This card also gives you control over bass and treble in windows 95/98, that alot of other cards dont. This is a nifty feature if you speakers only have a tone control, or no tone control at all.
You are right about 32 voices hardware and 32 soft. That's why I think it sucks. When you study it closely, you can't actually technically have 64 voices polyphony.
Since you'll have to assign which instrument it should use hardware and which it should use as software, if the MIDI you are playing happen to use only the instruments assigned to hardware, you're still stuck with only 32 voices. If I remember correctly, the default settings are that it'll use the drums as software and the rest as hardware.
In a way, I felt that Creative was pulling people's leg there.
There are many other cards out there such as EWS which supports hardware 64 voices, and have a much better MIDI wavetable than AWE and true MPU401 at 330H.
If you're saying that the SB64 was the best you'd ever heard, then I don't think you've actually heard many MIDI boards. For example, the SB MIDI doesn't even come close to the Roland Sound Canvas or Yamaha XG50. The only plus with SB32/64 series is that it let's you use soundfonts.
I use SB32 with 8MB RAM myself and loads soundfonts to improve the crappy wavetable sound.
You are aware that SB64 use the same wavetable chip as SB32, right? The only major difference between SB32 and SB64 is the additional 32 voices software wavetable. Plus SPDIF plug and gold plated plugs on the SB64 gold.
5 years is perhaps a little exaguration. But we all know how good our friend Collin is to exagurate about things. I don't even think the AWE is even 5 years old. It took about 1 year after it's release before games started to support it directly. I bought my AWE32 after it was launced about 6 months. It's a huge full lenght monster with 30 pin SIMM support. In fact, it's the only hardware component which I still use today. Everything else, including the case, has been replaced several times during the years.
(Sniff, get kinda nostalgic)
You don't have to go back many years to find DOS games which doesn't support the AWE. I don't remember of any names at the moment, since I haven't played them for some time.
But the point is that people should be avare of it just in case.
Also, I am fully aware of the MPU401 emulation in the AWE Control or with AWEUTIL.COM in clean DOS enviroment. However, the problem is that it DOES NOT work with games in protected mode. In other words, all games which use the DOS4GW extender. If a game runs in protected mode and doesn't support the AWE, you're screwed. You can use SB16/SBPRO MIDI on them, but it sounds really terrible.
First off, you can keep your a**hole oppinions about me to yourself. One of my oldest games (from 1994), system shock, has support for the sb awe 32. Sorry, that is 4years not 5, but close f**king enough.
I have the FUCKING right to say whatever I want. Maybe my a**hole oppinion is simply based on YOU beeing an a**hole?
Everybody can see from your earlier posts that you like to exagurate.
Your views and ideas are also quite biased.
For example, you had 1 bad experience with K6 (probably never even touched a K6-2), then all of a sudden, you have the techincal insight and experience to conclude that the AMD CPU's have no value whatsoever and it's complete crap and incompatibilities. How come the rest of the world manage to run the programs you describe without any problems whatsoever?
When somebody is asking for views or advice, you should presnet both sides. Not only the good or bad sides.
I was merely making him aware of all aspects of the AWE. I'm using it myself and I'm content with it and have NO imediate plans to buy a new one.
Many of your opinions and views also tells people that you're quite inexperienced in some areas. Like the statement that the sound of AWE is incredible. Even at it's time when it was launced, there were cards far more advanced and better.
One of your oldest games is System Shock? When did you started to play games? I remember it. Based on the same engine as Ultima Underworld, by Orgin. It was a nice game and was ahead of it's time.
Lets see, hmm im inexperienced in this stuff.... Lets see... Ive been in computers for 10 years, and repairing for 4. Ive done programing, midi sequencing, repairing, diagnosing, upgrading, testing, performance enhancing and a host of other stuff. But I seem to be totally inexperienced! I dont know what Im talking about...
Sorry, but you do not know me at all, and you cannot base an opinion on a person by their reply to someones post. If that were the case, I would emmediately lable you an ASSHOLE. But, I wont do that, because I do not know you enough to ASSUME that. Your post was quite rude, and it pissed me off.
I have my oppinions, and you have yours, but at least I have the respect to NOT go around and tell people that you exagerate things, and have no clue what you are doing.
I may be biased in some area's (like cpu's), but that is due to bad past personal experiences, work experiences, and other people I know's experiences. I have used amd's line up to the k-6 2, and they just cant cut it in all the stuff that intel processors can do. I personnaly dont care for intels company, but they have good processors that amd has yet to match in overall performance/compatability. I have also seen too many failed amd cpu's in my work, to recommend them to anyone for any reason. Where I work, we have never had a computer come in with a bad intel cpu, but we have had dozens of amd come in. AMD is UNRELIABLE.
I have tried many midi boards, and alot of them are really good, but the only ones that I have heard that doe midi really well, and have full dos/legacy support is the awe line. Sb live should change this somewhat. I have heard the rolland and yamaha cards, and I didnt care for the midi sound out of these compared to the awe. The awe produces less noise at most sound ranges than most cards that cost 2x as much. Turtle beach is another matter, their professional board produce excellent midi, but they are useless at legacy.
I said, inexperienced in SOME areas, not TOTALLY inexperienced.
Most other soundcards use MPU401 and should need no special support at all in order to use MIDI. Even the Gravis Ultrasound had far more advanced hardware specifications and MIDI than AWE, even though it's support sucked. SB16/AWE didn't even initially supported full duplex.
How long you've been in the field doesn't neccessarly means you have more experience or insight. Everything in this field change quite rapidly. Having a bad first impression on something and then sticking to it is not a good way to go.
I never said the PII was a bad CPU. It is the best CPU you can get on X86 platform. But when you set up price vs performance, it's just way too overpriced.
I said that you exagurate was merely because of your own answers to other posts such as about AMD CPU's fails to run or don't run well about 1/3 of programs out there. Now, don't tell me you didn't exagurate a whole lot.
Most problems with bad AMD systems are usually that mostly systems buildt with cheap and crappy components and motherboards. Pentium II boards are far more expensive, and you so to say don't have much choice than to use good components. Many shops which sells AMD systems are tempted to use cheap components in order to compete in price. When used properly quality components, AMD is a great system and value for money.
I never said amd processors will not work with about 1/3 of programs out there, just 1/3 of the programs in my personal software library either dont work well, or not at all with an amd. This was not overstated. I cant give you an exact #, but it was close enough to 1/3 for me to say that. It may be somewhere between 1/4 and 1/3, but most of that stuff I no longer use.
I also have had too many experiences with failed amd cpu's lately, and I have never had a system come in with a bad intel cpu.
Overall reliablility of the amd is alot lower than the intel's offerings. This is why I will not recommend them, especially now when you can get a celeron 300a for close to the same price as an amd processor of the same speed, and the good socket 7 motherboards are almost as expensive as good slot 1 offerings. Example: fic 503+ motherboard where I am is 149, the asus p5a socket 7 board is 149, the abit bx6 board is 169. Very slight difference. The amd k6-2 300 is 199, the celeron 300A is 209. Total of $30 difference is not very much at all, and worth a very hard consideration when looking at an entry level unit. I know prices vary widely from one location to another, but looking at every possible avenue first will save headaches in the long run.