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82-T/A

Tandy Sound Cards for sale...

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Not mine... but I've been looking for one for pretty much forever. They're 3-voice Tandy sound cards that fit a normal 8-bit ISA slot. What's better, you connect the sound from your existing PC into the card (PC speaker) and then use the original PC speaker for the output of the Tandy Sound Card.

 

Again, not mine... but I've been looking FOREVER for these, and just bought one... now that I know one is coming my way, thought I'd share, haha...

 

Tandy 3 Voice Sound Card (SN76489) ISA | eBay

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Thanks for posting this. I had no idea that the Tandy sound hardware was ever available as a separate card.   

 

The auction indicates that it does not ship to North America; is that an error by the seller?

 

 

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2 hours ago, jhd said:

Thanks for posting this. I had no idea that the Tandy sound hardware was ever available as a separate card.   

 

The auction indicates that it does not ship to North America; is that an error by the seller?

 

Hi! I just looked because you had me concerned, I don't see anywhere that it actually says that it does "NOT" ship to the United States. On the contrary, I see it says that shipping to the US typically takes 20 days, and also states that they ship internationally, but that it's located in Moscow.

 

Could it be something that might be specific to Canada? Oddly enough, it says that it takes 20-25+ more days to ship to Canada than it does to Europe or the United States. I don't know what that's about?

 

But yeah! These were designed quite a few years ago... maybe 10+. The person who designed them originally sold them as either kits (you had to source the chips and they sold you the board and schematics), or you could buy them pre-assembled. It was originally someone in Ukraine from what I recall. I search for them every so often, but have never been lucky enough to find one. But this came up, so I clicked buy as fast as I could.

 

Basically... the Tandy Sound uses a different memory address (for some reason) than the normal PC speaker sound, so if you had one of these installed, and you went to go play one of the older Sierra games and selected Tandy Sound, it would use the Tandy card instead of the 1 voice PC speaker. SOOO SOOO much better.

 

I'm going to be putting this in my 8088 Kay Pro PC.

 

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2 hours ago, Turbo-Torch said:

Were there many games that allowed you to select just Tandy sound without TGA graphics?

 

I would say, far more than less. I grew up in the 80s, and rarely remember seeing TGA even being an option. I could be wrong, but based on my exposure, most games kept them separate. I would assume this is because a lot of people upgraded their graphics. Most Tandy PCs had ISA card slots... like the 1000 and up models. I had an 8088 KayPro PC (still have it actually!!!) and used that all through my childhood. 

 

All the Sierra games (Kings Quest, Police Quest, and Space Quest) all allowed you to select the audio separate from the video. I would say the same also went for games like the Dungeons & Dragons gold box series games. Was TGA better than EGA? I can't remember...

 

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10 hours ago, 82-T/A said:

Was TGA better than EGA? I can't remember...

 

It was much better than CGA but not quite as good as EGA.  My SL had enhanced TGA, but still wasn't compatible with EGA.

 

Almost all the good games supported TGA and the 3 voice sound, I just couldn't remember if you automatically got both by selecting Tandy or had a choice for each.  Expansion on my EX was limited, so no real choice for video or sound upgrades bitd.  My SL got a Creative GameBlaster, but I never upgraded the video.  SL also had DAC which was cool to play around with, but only supported by a handful of games.

 

I remember Times of Lore really showed off the graphics and sound of my EX.

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35 minutes ago, Turbo-Torch said:

 

It was much better than CGA but not quite as good as EGA.  My SL had enhanced TGA, but still wasn't compatible with EGA.

 

Almost all the good games supported TGA and the 3 voice sound, I just couldn't remember if you automatically got both by selecting Tandy or had a choice for each.  Expansion on my EX was limited, so no real choice for video or sound upgrades bitd.  My SL got a Creative GameBlaster, but I never upgraded the video.  SL also had DAC which was cool to play around with, but only supported by a handful of games.

 

I remember Times of Lore really showed off the graphics and sound of my EX.

 

Yeah, I remember some definitely. There were some games where I'd select Tandy 3-Voice and I would just get single PC speaker sound, and others when I'd select it, I would hear nothing... :(

 

But in one month, I'll hear the glorious 3-voice polyphony of the Tandy.

 

For what it's worth, I just downloaded the Total DOS Collection 18 Archive...

Total DOS Collection 18 Archive : TDC : Free Download, Borrow, and Streaming : Internet Archive

 

I pretty much own all the original games I had on floppy or rebought them in collections on CD, and then bought them all again on Good Ole Games (about 256 games... so sad...) but there's a bunch of DOS / Tandy games in here that I'll be able to play and download at will...

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FYI, this came in the mail… really cool. I recently moved though so it will probably be a while before I can install it in my 8088. I will post about it when I can.

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On 7/28/2021 at 6:42 PM, 82-T/A said:

...so if you had one of these installed, and you went to go play one of the older Sierra games and selected Tandy Sound, it would use the Tandy card instead of the 1 voice PC speaker. SOOO SOOO much better.

There's also patches for those games that let you output 3-voice audio to a Soundblaster :)

The readme says it's not perfect, but it sounds pretty good to me.

 

Of course, most people probably just play those games in DOSBox or an AGI/SCI interpreter.

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