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Albert

Synthcart Beat Data Generator!

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http://www.cogent.net/lencharest/atari2600/synthcart/Len Charest has created a web-based graphical interface for generating the beatdata.h file required to enter the Synthcart Beat Programming Contest. This tool allows you to create new beats using a fairly intuitive interface, and there's even help available should you need it. To give everyone a chance to take advance of Len's new tool, we've extended the contest another week until Midnight (CST), Sunday, February 17th, 2002. Over twenty entries have been submitted to the contest thus far, with more arriving daily. Three entrants whose beats are chosen to be included with the Synthcart will receive a free Synthcart cartridge!

 

[ 02-11-2002: Message edited by: Albert ]

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Will someone please explain how this thing works!? I attempted to use the interface on the internet and absolutly do not understand what is going on. I need some sort of walk through. I really don't understand it. Can someone help? Why can't I hear the sounds?

 

The concept is amazing though and I would love to join in.

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The web interface generates a data file for the Beat Programming Kit. It doesn't actually generate sound. You must save the data it produces and then compile it using the kit. You end up with a ROM image that will play your beat on Atari 2600 emulators or a real Atari using the Cuttle Cart or Supercharger.

 

You should probably download the kit and read the readme file and the information in the beats.h file first.

 

-Paul

 

[ 02-10-2002: Message edited by: Smart Patrol ]

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quote:

Originally posted by Monster greifen an:

Will someone please explain how this thing works!? I attempted to use the interface on the internet and absolutly do not understand what is going on.

 

There is a Help link in the upper right hand corner of the page. Click on it, and a help page will open in a new browser window.

 

quote
Why can't I hear the sounds?

 

As Paul has pointed out, the web interface does not generate sounds. It merely generates the data file you need to enter the contest.

 

Finally, I should point out that I have tested the interface with Nestscape 6 and IE 6 only. I know for a fact that it does not perform correctly with Netscape 4.7. If you are having problems with the interface and you are using some other browser or version, please let me know and I'll see if I can tweak the code to support your particular broswer.

 

Regards,

Len

 

[ 02-11-2002: Message edited by: Onco Genesis ]

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Ignorance. Ha ha.

 

[ 02-11-2002: Message edited by: Matthew Vigor ]

 

[ 02-11-2002: Message edited by: Matthew Vigor ]

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I'm not anti-Mac at all. There are many times when I wish I had Final Cut Pro.

 

I would set it up for a Mac if I knew of a way. I just don't know of any 2600 assembler for the Mac.

 

-Paul

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Hey, thanks for the reponces. I did indeed try the little help window but I didn't understand it at all. So let me get this straight I need to download the .bin file, create my beat with the internet interface/unless I can drop it on a cuttle cart somehow (I don't understand that at all) then I save the data to my computer and play it through the beat generator.bin file? I haven't downloaded the .bin file because my computer is way slow. I will do that now. thanks everyone!

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i think hallys submish .. #2 is the better synco. of all the others ive heard so far. so far i wish i could get this pc of mine to accept the d/ load. its on auto open w/ win media.

should i try anothet path . excuse the untech savvy. but i got a Q:

how DO i down load the synth cart programm to my pc? and do i need to do ant techy # input my selt in order to make it start up?

quote
i need help getting the program to down load

 

[ 02-12-2002: Message edited by: crumbletones ]

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I had a bit of a tough time figurin it out too (so dun feel bad ) I don't have an actual Atai anymore (shame on me!) but this is how I got it working with the PCAEwin emulator.

 

After you finish clicking around on the beat creator web page, (you will not HEAR any sound here, so it's prolly best to experiment a bit and just change a bunch of params to get the hang of it) you can click on the "Show data" button on the right side of the page. This will spawn another browser window containing the precious "beat data" that you'll nead to hear your beat.

 

When you've got the big page full of text and beat data displayed, in IE (I'm assuming it will work this way with Netscape as well) you can click on "File" then "Save As..." Then save it with a file name of beatdata.h Save it somewhere that'll be easy to find.

 

Now, place this file in the directory which contains the beatcreator bin file, etc (the files which were extracted with from the .ZIP archive on the Atariage page) and run the "DASM" batch file... (look for a file called DASM) This will recompile it and your beat should now play in the beatcreator program.

 

Just launch the beat creator program in your emulator (or however else ya might do it on an Actual Atari) and funk around with the difficulty switches/etc to hear your beat. You should get two different beats, which can be played together or seperately... Might consider making a few of these "beatdata.h" files with different changes so you can get to "hear" what things sound like... Just remember, ya gotta run the DASM and re-compile each time you make a new beat...

 

Hope this helps out

 

-Kyle

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hehe my all too verbose attempt at help was erroneous!!

 

The batch file is asm.bat (not DASM.bat that I mentioned... DASM is the program the file calls.)

 

Hope it helped anyways..

 

Cheers

-Kyle

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why cant i down load the ;;beat kit file to any thing other than windows media player. i can see the address in the file scroll but i cant do *ick w/ it cuase its in zip mode or somthin? can i tranfer it

or get the frigin zip. to be saved as . somewhere else / i understand the interface fine but i gots nothin to open um ./?

any one got some tips ?

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found the zip. file / now

quote
WHICH PROGRAM IS RECOMENDED TO OPEN .H ASM. AND SUCH FILES W/  
WILL WINDOW MEDIA DO THE TRICK OR WHAT SHOULD I USE ?

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Right click on the link and choose "save target as" and then you should be able to save the beat kit on your hard drive. Open the .h and .asm files with a text editor like notepad.

 

-Paul

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Update

 

I've made some additions to the Generator interface since it was announced here on Sunday. I hope these new features make the Generator easier to use. But remember that I've only tested it on version 6 browsers.

 

First, you may now change the pitch of each note by clicking directly on the pitch bar graphic. Previously, the only way to change pitch on an individual note was to use the up and down arrows. (Note: To set a note to a rest, Alt-click on the pitch bar.)

 

Second, there are new controls for scrolling the sound, accent, and pitch waveform to the right or to the left, note by note. There are also controls for shifting the entire waveform up and down. These new controls appear on the far right of the graphical control area of both beats.

 

There is one more feature I would like to add to the interface because I think it would greatly enhance its user-friendliness: Currently, a click on the sound icon of an individual note causes the sound value to be rotated forward through a ring of 8 values. It would be much more convenient if a menu popped up instead. I'm working on it, but I may not be finished before the contest ends.

 

Regards,

Len

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