MSX1 vs C64

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Por Grauw

Ascended (10159)

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31-01-2018, 11:59

Samor wrote:

A similar thing happens in many Mega Drive games (I think the Mega Drive sounds similar-ish to FMPAC+PSG with the addition of better drum effects).

And for the drums MegaDrive used PCM. But, the reason why many MD games sound very same-ish is because many games (especially western ones) only used a limited set of not that well-designed preset voices from GEMS / SMPS.

FM-wise the MegaDrive’s YM2612 OPN2 sound chip is of equal quality to the YM2151 OPM used in many arcade games with fantastic music, with 6 channels of 4-op FM, plus a PSG sound generator. Technically it can match itself with the best of FM synthesis of the era.

Por ren

Paragon (1887)

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31-01-2018, 12:04

@Samor: no, was more like a follow up to Grauw's post.

Por Metalion

Paragon (1451)

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31-01-2018, 12:49

AFAIK, nobody mentioned the biggest technical difference between SID and PSG : the waveforms.
- PSG has only ne waveform available : square.
- SID has three : sawtooth, triangle, and rectangle pulse.
That's already there a clear advantage over the PSG.

And furthermore, from my point of view, the main advantage of the SID are the cut-off filters. That's what gives it its warmer sound, with more bass.

I must say I was disappointed by the PSG when I got my MSX in 1984. My neighbour had a C64. The graphics were better on the MSX, but there was no match for the C64 sound.

Por JohnHassink

Ambassador (5591)

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31-01-2018, 13:01

@ Metalion: PingPong mentioned that.

PingPong wrote:

Effectively the SID (...) features triangle and sawtooth waves and a ADSR control and a kind of 'ring' modulation

Anyway, about this discussion, I think comparing specs is secondary. In the end it's subjective preferences. You can show me this car

And say it has 300.000 PK horsepower, but that still doesn't mean I want to drive in it. ;)

Por wolf_

Ambassador_ (9905)

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31-01-2018, 13:17

You'd want to ride her, instead. Hannibal

Por JohnHassink

Ambassador (5591)

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31-01-2018, 13:50

Nah, too plastic. Contrary to OPL, I actually find her to be a bit too synthetic.

Por TomH

Champion (327)

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31-01-2018, 16:16

Bawdiness aside, Bob Yannes, designer of the SID and its spiritual semi-successor, the Ensoniq, was under no illusions:


I did design the SID chip with enough resolution to produce high-quality music. I was never able to refine the Signal-to-noise ratio to the level I wanted, though.


The issue wasn't budget, it was development time and chip size constraints. The design/prototype/debug/production schedule of the SID chip, VIC II chip and Commodore 64 were incredibly tight ... If I had had more time, I would have developed a proper MOS op-amp, which would have eliminated the signal leakage which occurred when the volume of the voice was supposed to be zero. This led to poor signal-to-noise ratio, although it could be dealt with by stopping the oscillator. It would also have greatly improved the filter, particularly in achieving high resonance.

Por hamlet

Scribe (3735)

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31-01-2018, 17:14

@the immortal JohnHassink
Even hardest men couldn´t resist such a pimped car: Big smile

Por JohnHassink

Ambassador (5591)

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31-01-2018, 18:36

@ hamlet: Well ofcourse, that makes a world of difference! LOL!

@ TomH: Would he have had the change to do that, it must had made the sound (objectively) more 'pleasant', but it might have also cost it a part of the unique charm it seems to have to people.

Por PingPong

Prophet (3793)

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31-01-2018, 18:42

Grauw wrote:

And a filter.

Another feature that is relatively important.

Grauw wrote:

I don’t think calling the SID an advanced PSG is entirely fair, it’s essentially a subtractive synthesizer (which is the most dominant type of synthesizer nowadays), in a home computer.

Maybe, but in the old 80 days there were no synth that used the SID, but a lot used Yamaha OPx chips.
Should mean something i think.
In game music evolved from PSG SID in wavetable or PCM or FM support as is demostrated by the various OPx chips employeed in later consoles or computer (16 bit)


(Although, one could argue with the right tools and moderate CPU support, the SCC can do all three types of synthesis, so it is really superior to all… Wink)

I think no. SCC has to much limited wave support even i must agree that is a really interesting chip.

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