PCjr Music composition software.

Software related questions

Re: PCjr Music composition software.

Postby GHiero » Sat Mar 01, 2014 4:56 pm

I think this may be a case where only Tandy's mouse drivers will work. I know of a mouse driver for their DigiMouse boards and their Joystick-Mouse driver. The Joystick-Mouse driver only works in Tandy 1000s, probably because the underlying joystick hardware is different from the PC and PCjr.
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Re: PCjr Music composition software.

Postby Maximillion95 » Sun Mar 02, 2014 10:21 pm

Trixter wrote:Load an ANSI driver and the menus will look normal.


Thanks! The ANSI Driver Fixed it right up.

The BSMW looks to be more powerful of a program than the rest (Except for maybe The Music Studio). I will no doubt have fun with it.
Hopefully I can get The Music Studio working on my Jr. also, but it seems Deskmate (And its its included music program) might be harder to get completely working than I once thought.

I tried to run TMS, However, other than the Venetian blinds issue, the program was yellow on white. This makes it almost unusable. On other computers I run it on the background was blue , I suppose the Tandy Mod would also fix this. I didn't test it with a mouse, however I assume sense it was a commercial program designed for DOS (Not just Tandy 1000's) that the mouse support will be more standard.

GHiero wrote:I think this may be a case where only Tandy's mouse drivers will work. I know of a mouse driver for their DigiMouse boards and their Joystick-Mouse driver. The Joystick-Mouse driver only works in Tandy 1000s, probably because the underlying joystick hardware is different from the PC and PCjr.


Would it be possible to run the Tandy mouse drivers on a PCjr? Or would that require a Tandy Mouse?
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Re: PCjr Music composition software.

Postby GHiero » Mon Mar 03, 2014 12:32 am

Maximillion95 wrote:
GHiero wrote:I think this may be a case where only Tandy's mouse drivers will work. I know of a mouse driver for their DigiMouse boards and their Joystick-Mouse driver. The Joystick-Mouse driver only works in Tandy 1000s, probably because the underlying joystick hardware is different from the PC and PCjr.


Would it be possible to run the Tandy mouse drivers on a PCjr? Or would that require a Tandy Mouse?


When Personal Deskmate was released, Tandy had exactly two options for a mouse available for the 1000 series, the Digi-Mouse, which was a bus mouse with its own interface card, and the (Deluxe) Color Mouse, which plugged into the gameport. Only the drivers associated with these two devices show a proper cursor according to my tests. Personal Deskmate II is much more tolerant of mice in general. I tried the joystick driver and it was far too erratic for use in the Jr. Tandy usually released serial mice or mice from other companies like Microsoft or Logitech, so those drivers work with its mice and as far as I know do not work with Personal Deskmate.
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Re: PCjr Music composition software.

Postby Maximillion95 » Mon Mar 03, 2014 2:18 am

I am also wondering if anyone knows where I can find a scan of the manual for The BSMW or some kind of documentation telling how to use it. It seems to have a good deal of features and trying to figure them out myself would take awhile.

GHiero wrote:When Personal Deskmate was released, Tandy had exactly two options for a mouse available for the 1000 series, the Digi-Mouse, which was a bus mouse with its own interface card, and the (Deluxe) Color Mouse, which plugged into the gameport. Only the drivers associated with these two devices show a proper cursor according to my tests. Personal Deskmate II is much more tolerant of mice in general. I tried the joystick driver and it was far too erratic for use in the Jr. Tandy usually released serial mice or mice from other companies like Microsoft or Logitech, so those drivers work with its mice and as far as I know do not work with Personal Deskmate.


Thanks, I didn't know that. Hopefully I can get a mouse to work in Personal Deskmate II after I do the Tandy Mod. I might have to try one of my Logitech or Microsoft ones though. I was fortunate to have bought my Jr with a serial port breakout cable.
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Re: PCjr Music composition software.

Postby GHiero » Tue Mar 04, 2014 8:31 pm

Personal Deskmate 2 will show an ungarbled mouse cursor, but it also displays ddoouubbllee cchhaarraacctteerrss with the PCjr. keyboard, making it rather less than usable. I had no luck playing music through the music program, but I only tried it for a second.
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Re: PCjr Music composition software.

Postby Maximillion95 » Thu Mar 06, 2014 2:23 am

Turns out all you have to do is hit Ctrl-H once in edit mode to bring up the programs help menu, There it tells you how to use the whole thing.

GHiero wrote:Personal Deskmate 2 will show an ungarbled mouse cursor, but it also displays ddoouubbllee cchhaarraacctteerrss with the PCjr. keyboard, making it rather less than usable. I had no luck playing music through the music program, but I only tried it for a second.


I get the same issue too, I guess this is one program that will just seems to not work on the Jr.

Turns out the BSMW is more powerful than I thought, It even has envelope editing for the 3 voices; and it even supported drums if you used the Mindscape Music Board. Sadly, the drums aren't supported on the Jr. which is a shame sense it has a programmable noise channel.

Out of all the Music programs out there for the Jr. none seem to support the Noise channel. Well, maybe someone will write a new Music program with noise channel support one day. I bet even the speech adapter could be used for musical possibilities too, perhaps the Jr. could one day rival it's contemporaries with all that hardware behind it.
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Re: PCjr Music composition software.

Postby Trixter » Thu Mar 06, 2014 8:24 am

The hardware control in BSMW was adopted from the Apple II Mockingboard (which the PC "BSMW card" is a clone of) so that's where the noise channel shaping comes from. The Tandy 1000 was rocketing to the top of popularity when BSMW was being written, so it was a fairly simple matter to include tone channel support... but trying to support the same level of controllable "drums" on the Tandy/PCjr meant that you would lose one of the tone channels to do so due to the nature of the hardware. So, no drums on Tandy/PCjr.

If you'd like to compose music for the PCjr and don't mind doing so on another operating system, the tracker Deflemask can compose for the Sega Master System which uses the exact same hardware as the PCjr. You can then output your composition as a .VGM file which is easily playable on PCjr with some software I wrote (available on request if you get this far). There's another tracker you can use called MOD2PSG2 but it is a little more quirky and tempermental so I don't initially recommend it.

The Speech hardware is capable of reproducing samples as well as LPC speech, the latter of which can be manipulated to "sing" although it would be an endeavor.
You're all insane and trying to steal my magic bag!
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Re: PCjr Music composition software.

Postby GHiero » Thu Mar 06, 2014 8:44 am

I found out that you can play music through Personal Deskmate 2's music program. In order to hear it, however, you just have to set the audio multiplexer with a program like tdysound prior to loading Personal Deskmate 2. The only serious issue is the ddoouubbllee cchhaarraacctteerrss with keyboard input. This problem also occurs with Personal Deskmate [1], so at least its consistent.
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