Sound Blaster Pro 2 suddenly silent

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resle
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Joined: Mon 23 Feb, 2015 8:00 am

Sound Blaster Pro 2 suddenly silent

Post by resle » Sun 11 Feb, 2018 1:40 pm

Hi,

with no change to any of my machines, suddenly all those using a Sound Blaster Pro 2, became silent.
Neither Midi/FM nor digitized audio will play.
(All the other sound cards work properly)

Oddly, there is *one* program which keeps outputting audio with the SBPro2 : Fast Tracker II (which as far as I remember works in very unorthodox ways)
Any hint?

Edit: PcEm 13.1, Windows 10 x64 build 17093.
Attaching sample config.
386-40.cfg
(1.86 KiB) Downloaded 28 times

JosepMa
Posts: 126
Joined: Tue 20 Jun, 2017 6:25 pm

Re: Sound Blaster Pro 2 suddenly silent

Post by JosepMa » Sun 11 Feb, 2018 7:05 pm

It's strange...
I have to investigate a bug where configuring some applications to use a soundblaster pro, and having a soundblaster 16 or AWE32 on the machine setup doesn't produce sound, but your case worked here on the applications that I tried.

Can you tell the names of those that fail?

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resle
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Joined: Mon 23 Feb, 2015 8:00 am

Re: Sound Blaster Pro 2 suddenly silent

Post by resle » Sun 11 Feb, 2018 11:34 pm

Even test-sbp.exe, provided on the sbpro2 install disks, fails.
Mind well: there is no error code, the card is detected properly. Just no audible output.
You can try also a couple games such as wolf3d or ultima 6.

JosepMa
Posts: 126
Joined: Tue 20 Jun, 2017 6:25 pm

Re: Sound Blaster Pro 2 suddenly silent

Post by JosepMa » Mon 12 Feb, 2018 5:02 pm

I tested with V13.1 release, and with the current development version and I get sound.

I even created a new machine (and hard disk) without the drivers installed, and there, test-sbp works fine.
(My previous one has another version of the soundblaster pro drivers that didn't have test-sbp, but which include diagnose.exe which does the same).

At one point I didn't get sound, but that seemed to be caused by pcem itself losing audio (i.e. not getting any audio from it, neither the bips on reboot).
(This tends to happen when changing default soundcard on windows)

The only thing I can tell right now is that you check the soundblaster mixer values if you see anything strange in there. Since version v13, soundblaster pro has its own mixer, which is not 100% compatible with the SB16 one.


There is an issue reading (and writing!) the soundcard address port. The value is an HEX value ( 220 ), but is being written and read as a decimal value!
Your file has the value 220. As such, when reading it, it isn't accepted as a valid value. Said that, the test-sbp already warns that the port is not available, so this isn't the cause of your problem.

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resle
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Re: Sound Blaster Pro 2 suddenly silent

Post by resle » Tue 13 Feb, 2018 1:27 am

Sorry that was a clumsy attempt by me to see if perhaps it was written in decimal but needed to be hexa instead, so I manually changed 544 to 220.

The problem persists: all cards working (including other soundblaster types) but not the sbpro2 and sbpro1.

What is puzzling to me is that it just stopped working, after it always did, with all my machines, all pcem versions since 10 (as far as I remember)

I still have to try a clean reinstall

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resle
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Re: Sound Blaster Pro 2 suddenly silent

Post by resle » Tue 13 Feb, 2018 7:37 am

Problem solved. It might highlight some unexpected behavior?

The culprit was the autoexec line that sets some env variables for address, interrupt and dma that supposedly other programs should use to autoconfigure the card.

SET BLASTER = ...

All programs seem to work just as fine without it. On the other hand, with the environment variable set, regardless of the parameters (matching the effective addr, int and dma, or not) - nothing works. Exactly the opposite of one would expect

JosepMa
Posts: 126
Joined: Tue 20 Jun, 2017 6:25 pm

Re: Sound Blaster Pro 2 suddenly silent

Post by JosepMa » Tue 13 Feb, 2018 10:02 am

it is strange, indeed, but also because it's not what happens here:

config.sys:
c:\sbpro\drv\ctsbpro.sys /unit=0 /blaster=a:220 i:5 d:1
c:\sbpro\drv\ctmmsys.sys

autoexec.bat: (this line is supposed to restore the mixer settings previously saved with the sbpset DOS mixer application)
c:\sbpro\sbpset /p /q


With the older drivers (those that have the test-sbp), instead of sbpset, there is the sbp-set (to restore) and the sbp-mix (the text-based mixer).
2018-02-13 10_56_58-PCem v13.1 - 100% - [386SX] AMI 386SX clone - i386SX_33.jpg
driver
2018-02-13 10_56_58-PCem v13.1 - 100% - [386SX] AMI 386SX clone - i386SX_33.jpg (92.49 KiB) Viewed 663 times
2018-02-13 10_57_27-PCem v13.1 - 100% - [386SX] AMI 386SX clone - i386SX_33.jpg
environment vars
2018-02-13 10_57_27-PCem v13.1 - 100% - [386SX] AMI 386SX clone - i386SX_33.jpg (86.1 KiB) Viewed 663 times

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resle
Posts: 52
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Re: Sound Blaster Pro 2 suddenly silent

Post by resle » Tue 13 Feb, 2018 11:35 am

Consider I had none of the ct-drivers in my config.sys and autoexec.bat. All I had (all that the SBPRO installation disks added), was that line.
Everything seems to work perfectly without anything loaded at all and that line commented.

I also remember clearly never loading any drivers back in the days of my real 80386. That line however was present, and without it a few programs didn't work, but I can't remember which ones (I think most of them were sb utilities within the sbpro folder itself, such as sbaitso, the talking parrot, mmplay and so on..)

Anyway, all under control now!

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