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PostPosted: 2017-03-18, 22:51:41 

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Joined: 2016-12-27, 3:21:40
Posts: 54
I noticed that OPL2 (YM3812) music can sound much better when played on an OPL3 (YMF262) using player software that reassigns all notes from nine to eighteen voices. Apart from the added dimension that comes from panning voices left, right, and center, having twice the number of voices allows all notes to fully complete their Release periods, adding a sense of spaciousness to the output, removing the "clicky notes" artifacts that is common to a lot of FM music. Consider the following two examples.

The first example is THECLOUD.ROL, originally included on the AdLib Song Disk #7 (New Age Echoes). Creative Labs used it (possibly illegally) as the background music to their crappy "Sound Blaster 16 Features" trade show demo. The demo uses a badly-converted CMF format version of the song that is further mangled by being played through a version of SBFMDRV that ignores all note velocities. The original .ROL format version sounds much better, and benefits from being played on OPL3 with notes reassigned to eighteen voices.

The second example is the first dungeon music from Zeliard. All of Zeliard's FM instruments specify rather long Release periods, which are never heard because the voices are immediately reused after the note has been turned off. By reassigning all notes to eighteen voices, the Release periods are heard as specified in the respective operator register data. Doing so adds a considerable amount of spaciousness to the music, almost as if it Reverb had been added.

Adlib Song Disk #7 (New Age Echoes) - The Cloud.vgm [142.32 KiB]
Downloaded 237 times
Zeliard - To the World of Darkness.vgm [103.17 KiB]
Downloaded 241 times
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PostPosted: 2017-03-23, 14:11:40 

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Joined: 2016-06-24, 19:21:35
Posts: 22
Which software reassigns the notes from nine to eighteen voices? I want to determine if I notice a difference.

Do you need to playback on a real OPL3 or is the effect present in VGMPlay?

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