Parallel Port Sound Cards Review - Part 2

In Part 1 I reviewed the OPL3LPT Ad Lib-compatible parallel port sound card. In this Part 2, I focus on the DreamBlaster S2P.

 

Dreamblaster S2P

The DreamBlaster S2P (S2 Parallel) effectively gives you the ability to play games that support General MIDI as well as any MT-32 titles that work with SoftMPU. There's a special build of SoftMPU by Peter De Wachter for the S2P where you specify your parallel port as the output - this is necessary to use the S2P.

When running this special version of SoftMPU for General MIDI sound, use it like this:

SOFTMPU.EXE /MPU:330 /OUTPUT:LPT1

 

Here are audio recordings of the games I tested with the DreamBlaster S2P:

  • Star Wars: TIE Fighter - worked fine out of the box.

 
Star Wars: TIE Fighter 

  • Duke Nukem 3D - no GM audio - use S2PATCH?

 

So what about Roland MT-32 support?

SoftMPU's /MT32 switch enables Roland MT-32 compatibility. For just GM (General MIDI) compatibility, you can omit this switch. Here are the recordings of those games I tried with this MT-32 compatibility enabled:

  • Day of the Tentacle - hmm, some sounds come over a little strange, though that may be 'normal' for MT-32 for this game (will check)...

 

Day of the Tentacle 

  • TFX - audio worked just fine, but it sounds like this game was written for the MT-32 "New", and the MT-32 emulation uses samples for the MT-32 "Old".

There are more games to follow and I will add them to this page once they're ready, plus completing this round of testing in Part 3 with the CVX4 Covox Speech Thing parallel port sound card!

In the mean time, I've put together a fairly thorough article on MT-32 games that work with SoftMPU here.