About MSX trackers

By tz

Supporter (4)

tz's picture

24-04-2004, 00:15

Is there any reason why most (all?) MSX trackers only allow 16 rows per pattern?

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By Meits

Scribe (6445)

Meits's picture

24-04-2004, 01:10

I think it's better than 64 step ones since on 64 steps all 64 steps are unchangable whilst using 4 16 step patterns, you can switch some here and there...

By tz

Supporter (4)

tz's picture

24-04-2004, 02:06

Maybe.
I was wondering if there was any technical reason, though.
Most trackers for other platforms allow you to have more rows, and it just seems that most MSX trackers do not allow that.

By BiFi

Enlighted (4348)

BiFi's picture

24-04-2004, 07:00

There are 2 MSX trackers with 64 steps per pattern. SCC-MUSIXX and Pro-Tracker (for MSX-MUSIC and MSX-AUDIO). IMHO 16 steps per pattern gives more freedom to the composer.

By tz

Supporter (4)

tz's picture

24-04-2004, 07:19

Hmm, I see. Are there any trackers with 16 rows per pattern that allow more than 80 unique patterns? I noticed that this is a limitation of Moonblaster...

By anonymous

incognito ergo sum (116)

anonymous's picture

24-04-2004, 08:28

The unique pattern thing is a memory issue (trackers are usually made to run on128K RAM), the 16 steps thing is because MSX trackers aren't based on MOD, while most other trackers are.

By wolf_

Ambassador_ (9892)

wolf_'s picture

24-04-2004, 09:24

(imo) 64 steps *is* better, musically seen.. but this prolly brings up a heated debate Smile
usually, 16-step songs are kinda repetitive as ppl copy usually a pattern to the next position, to make some marginal changes. The whole structures tends to be small-scaled then. On the other hand, more steps on the screen (32, like with PC trackers), also helps getting a proper overview.. but due to the screen-resolution that's not really an option.

By ro

Scribe (4473)

ro's picture

24-04-2004, 12:08

Another disadvantage of preset pattern length is the time measurement.. like 16 rows is 4x4 beats (typical 4/4 measure) To have odd timing, e.g. 7/8 measures, you need to set a "end-of-pattern" event (as in MB)

I've been surprised no one else came up with a more flexible system like Oracle does. Oracle allows the user to set up patterns with max. lengt of 256 rows and 32 channels. So odd timing for example would be no problem, or a pattern lengt of 64 rows. Also Oracle supports max. 256 unique patterns (well, it supports more. but there are only 256 positions at max.)
A disadvantage of all of this is the overhead (read: slower replayer)
unless you set up a 3 channel song with only PSG enabled Smile
(yup, Oracle can be a PSG tracker if you want)

Ok. I'll stop this advertisement now... sorry.

By flyguille

Prophet (3028)

flyguille's picture

24-04-2004, 16:11

Smile, normal software limitation... on mnbios the tracker inside got a individual size defined in each pattern, because allow CALL, RET and JP. Wink

So, in musical sentences, you can do..

FILENAME: SONG.SND

TRACK 1(name): "TEST"

SONG TRACK 1
-----------------
CALL pattern A
CALL pattern B
END

PATTERN A
-------------
DO
RE
MOD 22
MI
FA
Vol 15
LA
RET

PATTERN B
-------------
CALL PATTERN C
LA
SI
CALL PATTERN C
LA
RET

PATTERN C
------------
Vol 15
vol 14
vol 13
vol 12
RET

Wink

well , that text don't work, because not got any "END SAMPLE" command, so, all that will be executed on only one interruption... so, no work.. but, is a very nice example of the structure.... ofcourse.. that need be coded in HEX.