Meridian - Progress update

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By snout

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24-01-2003, 11:29

I'm not sure about that. But I think someone else than Michiel (Grauw already kind of volunteered??) will have to build this replayer.

By Grauw

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24-01-2003, 18:55

Ghehehe... -_-;; btw 128kb of RAM should definately be enough. However in order to keep the editing and replay speed it organizes the songdata in a kind of space-wasting manner. Also the FM/Wave tone definitions etc. take up a lot of memory. At least, that's what I think. Compass does pretty much the same thing, and you can't use Compass very well with only 128k. But you can run the resulting (assembled) files with an 128k MSX, can't you? ;p

Anyways, it sounds cool. I indeed agree that certain MIDI voices would definately sound better with FM. But erm, isn't the instrument set like, configurable? Like, replace the DEF_MIDI.TNE file (.tne being an imaginary tone collection file format) with another or something?? If that's the case it could be 'shipped' with a preliminary MIDI set and improvements can later on be made by Michael, and other people can contribute... Like when they work with Meridian and find a better Wave/FM-setting for certain instruments, they can change it right away and mail the updates to Michael aswell.

~Grauw

By wolf_

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24-01-2003, 21:33

why should FM be big??

afaik an old fmpac voice could be stored in 8 bytes.., well double this for 4 operators, and you have 16 bytes. an additional byte for algorithm storage (2 bits I guess) and few bytes to store the operator-waveform........ ~20 bytes in total??? + 12 bytes for a name...

when you store 200 voices like this, it only takes up around 6.4 kb...

By Grauw

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26-01-2003, 03:34

Hmmz, but there are 200 2-op voices, 100 4-op voices, ??? (200?) wave voices...

1600 bytes for 200x2-op voice data (8 bytes/voice)

1600 bytes for 100x4-op voice data (16 bytes/voice)

1200 bytes for 300xFM voice data (4 bytes/voice)

3200 bytes for 200xWave voice data (16 bytes/voice?)

6000 bytes for 500 voice names (12 bytes/voice)

When rounding this off to above (taking into account that there might be more to store, aligning, reserved areas for future use) it's 16kb already, one entire memory segment.

And it's not the only thing in Meridian. There are ofcourse the frequency-tables aswell... Those are *large*, take up most of the space in the MBWAVE replayer. I'd say, depending on how much base frequencies Meridian offers, 16k, maybe 32k. Then there's also the GUI, which probably needs quite some text buffers, etc... Shall we allocate 16 more kbytes for that? DOS2 also needs 32k of additional memory, the actual program itself needs RAM too, the TPA, it needs at least 32k for the program + system area. Oh, it surely needs a decent temporary area too, 16 more kbytes.

Most importantly, song data is uncompressed so it takes up a lot of memory (the bulk of it actually, I think), and it's also optimized for editing. So it's probably also regularly storing the settings inside it (Meridian doesn't do a settings scan before playing does it?). Also because of the non-fixed field length in Meridian (multiple commands per step) it is difficult to properly allocate space for it, there will be some waste aswell.

Anyways, my point is, it all adds up. ^_^

~Grauw

By snout

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26-01-2003, 13:10

And... there are more waves. 384 internal ROM sounds, and depending on your internal memory you can have huge ammounts of RAM sounds.

By snout

Ascended (15184)

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26-01-2003, 13:56

Yesterday, Latok and I gave a small demo of Meridian 3.0 beta on the MSX Fair in Oss. Generally, people were amazed by the results already accomplished by Michiel de Vries. Also, there were some interesting suggestions to improve Meridian. I'll post them here and -of course- will mail them to Michiel as well.

  • LEF / RIG / CEN indication: use one letter or better abbreviations (LFT, RGT, CNT)
  • Insert / Delete step option (although you can use blocks to accomplish this)
  • Tempo settings: give the possibility to enter the tempo in Beats per Minute
  • Moonblaster Wave conversion: Better handling of tempo changes and ENDOP instructions.
  • New song - tracker mode (so every instrument on Piano1, a drum channel and a standard interval between the steps)
  • After exiting Meridian it should return to the directory it was booted from
  • While playing a MIDI file, it should be possible to scroll up and down in the channels
  • A position pointer on top of the screen would be highly appreciated
  • While playing a song, an exit function would be nice, exiting directly to the position the song was at that time
  • While converting a MIDI file, the progress indicator of Meridian 2.0 might have slowed down, but it looked cool and made conversion seem to go faster. We want it back! Tongue
  • While playing a MIDI file, Meridian 2.0 had 'Equalizers' that showed a note was played on a channel, we want that back too! Tongue
  • While dragging a window, it might even be possible to show the window contents using textbuffers and outi's.
  • An option to switch directly between tone and program editors would be nice
  • A hotkey to play a C4 at any time in the tone editor would be nice

By the way, Michiel is probably coming to Tilburg for a nice demonstration, perhaps Meridian is already able to play MIDI files on the Moonsound by then! Smile

By Grauw

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26-01-2003, 20:43

However, the dragging windows with contents is a bit over the top. Time spent on it is better used for other things. Besides it is very useful to see what you are placing the window on so you don't place it on something you want to see.

Heh, that was my suggestion! ;p

Anyways since Michiel has done so much effort on the UI, it would make kinda sense to me to make it even spiffier. About not seeing what you are placing the window on, that is even clearer if the window is rendered while you're dragging. If only the outlines are rendered (which also takes time, so even more reason to think rendering the whole thing should just be possible) you have to think more because it's not like the overlapped region is 'greyed out' or something, while if you drag it to the spot you want, when you don't see what you want to see you notice it immediately ^_^. Anyways, I know in Windows I prefer showing the window content while dragging over only showing the outlines. And since it could be done (wouldn't be too much effort either, I think? I bet Michiel already uses text buffers)...

~Grauw

By snout

Ascended (15184)

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27-01-2003, 10:28

Well _IF_ it's really easy to show window contents while dragging, I think it should become a preference as well. And besides, GuyveR is right... it's no more than a gimmick to an already highly impressive window manager.

Wolf: You're right, a richer FM form is appreciated, but you got my intention, didn't you? It would be great if you could align a tone to the FM straight away from the PCM tone menu. By the way, what do you think about the suggestions so far?

By ro

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27-01-2003, 10:45

eh, something about Equilizers:

An equilizer is where you can boost or cut different frequency bandwitdhs, check your stereoset for them parameters to change bass/treble for example. Or some of you might actually have equilizers which come in, oh I dunno, 5, 12 or 31 bands.

I will not go into details about Graphic, parametric and paragraphic equilisers.. not even to mention; shelfing, dipping, passing etc. (did I mention notch filters already??)

What I'm trying to say here:

Those damn graphics you see bouncing on your screen, dansing to the music, are ANALYZERS, not equilizers.

And not even real Volume and or Frequency Analyzers, coz our beloved MSX system isn't just capable of handling the speed.

So, NOTE ANALYZER would be a good term I quess..

(again I'm that frustrated ex-msx-coder.. ghehe)

I would just love to discuss all of this B.S. but that's not what the thread is about, right. So meridian seems to be cool!

By wolf_

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27-01-2003, 10:58

LEF / RIG / CEN indication: use one letter or better abbreviations (LFT, RGT, CNT)

ok.. but these are just details Smile

Insert / Delete step option (although you can use blocks to accomplish this)

If this means moving track-contents up and down, then it's good. ST3/IT2 also supports this. And not only per channel but also per pattern. And after I send a little idea to the author of IT2 also a wrap-around mode was added to it. Smile

Tempo settings: give the possibility to enter the tempo in Beats per Minute

ofcourse..

Moonblaster Wave conversion: Better handling of tempo changes and ENDOP instructions.

details details... how many ppl imported fst songs in MB? How many ppl will load MBwave songs in Meridian?

New song - tracker mode (so every instrument on Piano1, a drum channel and a standard interval between the steps)

sure.. not technically shocking..

After exiting Meridian it should return to the directory it was booted from

details again Smile

While playing a MIDI file, it should be possible to scroll up and down in the channels

midi files Smile

A position pointer on top of the screen would be highly appreciated

How does it look now btw? in IT there's just one small column with all positions.. no need to have a screen-filling table..

While playing a song, an exit function would be nice, exiting directly to the position the song was at that time

ofcourse..

While converting a MIDI file, the progress indicator of Meridian 2.0 might have slowed down, but it looked cool and made conversion seem to go faster. We want it back!

details.. Smile

While playing a MIDI file, Meridian 2.0 had 'Equalizers' that showed a note was played on a channel, we want that back too!

to please a coder here, lets rename them to note analysers Smile

While dragging a window, it might even be possible to show the window contents using textbuffers and outi's.

sure.. details again, my dear Watson..

An option to switch directly between tone and program editors would be nice

naturally...

A hotkey to play a C4 at any time in the tone editor would be nice

indeed..

So, all in, there's a lot of small usage-details, and not many 'musical' ideas imo.

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