SMPS/"SOUND-SOURCE" Source Code, Documents, and More

Discussion in 'Discussion & Q&A' started by ralakimus, Jun 16, 2020.

  1. ralakimus

    ralakimus pretty much a dead account Member

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    Courtesy of The Video Game Preservation Society and Hidden Palace, the floppy disks containing source code (68000+Z80 and Z80), documentation, and other thing related to SMPS (officially called "SOUND-SOURCE") was finally dumped and put online. See the article for more information.
     
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2020
  2. MarkeyJester

    MarkeyJester ♡ ! Member

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    Nice, it's only taken over 30 years!! My props to those involved in obtaining these~

    Also, the English translation of the manual was intentionally missing this:

    [​IMG]

    "This is a test register. Not used in user applications."

    Hehehe, they knew it was there but was told not to use it~ d;

    I say as a potential project, someone should go through and translate all of these pages 1:1 to English, because clearly there's information that's been mistranslated or outright not included in the English versions of the documents.
     
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  3. Clownacy

    Clownacy Well-Known Member Retired Staff

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    Since I'm apparently terrible at letting things go, I figured I'd bump this thread to mention some research I did a while ago, where I found the claim that SMPS's real name is "SOUND-SOURCE" to be pretty questionable.

    Being an SMPS guy, this subject annoys me to no end. The main point I'd like to make is to not blindly believe what people tell you, and to do your own research. That said, what I say in my posts isn't undeniable fact either: go download the source code yourself, and come to your own conclusions. Personally I want someone to prove me wrong, because surely the Hidden Palace team had their reasons to make the claim they did, right?
     
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2020
  4. MarkeyJester

    MarkeyJester ♡ ! Member

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    I had a look through many of the files myself, and have found 'SOUND-SORCE', 'SOUND-SOURCE', 'DICK_TRACY', and 'MoDeM BOOT ROM' in the same place in various files, while I think you're right, I really don't think the sound driver has a name beyond generic naming. The entry point routine name is "sound:" and majority of the source files are prefixed with "md" or "m5", and the internals always call it "Sound Something Something", be it "Sound Control Batch File", "Sound Main Control", "SOUND COMMAND CONTROL", "SOUND DATA FILE", etc. Even the manual in Japanese refers to everything in relation to the driver as "Sound", though this could just be a poor translation:

    "① Clear WORK RAM for sound

    Clear WORK RAM ($ fff000-$ ffdbff) for sound to 0."

    It could just be generic naming and the driver has no intended name beyond a quick referencing as "sound".
     
  5. KZG4

    KZG4 The Grenade Member

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    I know I am bumping an old topic but I found these Twitter posts from one of my favorite composers on the Genesis, Hikoshi Hashimoto:

    https://twitter.com/Hikoshi_H/status/1180661206253596672?s=20
    https://twitter.com/Hikoshi_H/status/1169707879164608513?s=20

    In the first post, he refers to the FM patches used in his games as "sound source synths", in the second post, he praises Plouge's ChipSynthMD for being able to reproduce "Mega Drive sound source".

    Hikoshi exclusively used SMPS on the Genesis, so I think this confirms that the original name for SMPS was, in fact, Sound Source.
     
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2021
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  6. Clownacy

    Clownacy Well-Known Member Retired Staff

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    It proves that some end-user musicians call it that, sure, but I wouldn't necessarily say that it proves that's its actual name. Technically SMPS is its 'name' too, because that's what we call it, but it's not as valid a name as what its developers called it. For all we know, Hashimoto could be calling it that for the same reason Hidden Palace supposedly did: because that's what's written on the floppy disk. But that doesn't disprove the possibility that 'Sound-Source' is just a mangled shorthand version of 'Sound Driver Source Code' or 'Sound Driver for Sorcerian'.

    I just don't think it's wise to jump to conclusions and claim that this thing or that thing solves the issue completely, especially when there's so much conflicting evidence. I think we're starting to get to the point where the very meaning of the word 'name' is getting blurry: personally, I want to know SMPS's internal name - the one used by its developers, not what end-users decided to call it. We know what end-users call it now, which is great, but it doesn't close the book completely.

    EDIT: Mazin (of Sonic CD fame) also references Sound Source when discussing Sonic CD's unused song loops, which would have been played using SMPS-PCM.
     
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2021