Video Game Sound + Speech ( was RE: 80's Video...)
CJones at sni.co.uk
Tue Feb 27 18:47:00 CET 1996
>> anybody remember arcade games back in the 80's? Remember the cool
>> they made? I mean, I know they we're very limited, but to me, that
>> crudeness gave them their charm.
>> So, does anyone know what kind of sound generating hardware some of
>> games used? My fave, soundwise, was probably Defender. I'd love the
>> audio board out of one of those machines!
>But I do know that the Sequential Six-Trak uses the so called
>sound generation chip that was originally designed for use in 80's video
>games. (Would that be the CEM3394 custom voice IC that's being closed
>out at Wine Country for $9 bucks?)
>As far as a polyphonic synth goes...the 6-trak is very limited (one osc
>per voice) but you can get some pretty nasty noises out of it.
>tried to make it sound like musical instrument...but there may be
>some video game noises lurking deep within it. The filters have a really
>scuzzy sound that makes for some interesting sound effects.
Okay, I'll let you into a little secret - I used to work for Atari UK (in
the early eighties) and I also repair pinball machines in my work shop at
home *this is not a joke*. Anyone who crosses to rec.games.pinball may
see me there every once in a while.
Bally and Williams (who made Defender) used a variety of audio chips in
the early eighties Video and pinball machines along with a CSVD speech
chip, which, had the "phrases" to be spoken in ROM. Sounds *did not* use
a custom sound IC until about 1981/2 - previouly the programmer generated
the tones in software and were re-called and fed into the DAC and then
into the audio amp.
Williams employed their early ground breaking speech and audio into their
video games - Defender, Robotron, Joust and so on.
Bally went from using an industry standard 3 channel analogue chip to a
board known as "Squalk and Talk" which had both speech and sound. All
audio boards had a uP which operated independantly from the game uP (the
one that controlled the lights, solenoids, switches and so on).
If you hang on until tommorow - I'll post all the audio chips I know to
have been used.
Btw, Williams now own Bally, although, Bally still put games out under
their own name.
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