Music and sound

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Music and sound

Post by orudge »

While obviously we'll want the core engine implemented first, it'd be a good idea to think about how we will implement music and sound effects.

First of all, what music format should we use? MIDI, MOD (this includes XM, S3M, IT, etc - all module formats), MP3 or Ogg Vorbis, or something else? I'll list the pros and cons of each, in my opinion:

MIDI
Pros: Very small file size, can be quite good quality depending on MIDI device. Doesn't use much CPU processing.
Cons: Can be awful quality, depending on MIDI device. Limited to what the MIDI device can give you.

MOD
Pros: Relatively small file size, quality can be quite good.
Cons: Uses more CPU time, and is again limited in what you can have.

MP3
Pros: High quality, can have singing, effects and all sorts in MP3.
Cons: Uses a lot of CPU time (on slower systems especially), can have a detrimental effect on game performance, files are large.

Ogg Vorbis
Pros: Very high quality, can have singing, effects, etc, like MP3.
Cons: Uses more CPU time than MP3, can have a detrimental effect on game performance, files are large (although you can have higher quality with lower bitrates compared with MP3).

Each of these formats has its pros and cons. Should we perhaps allow all the formats, and have a playlist feature so the user can pick only MIDIs or MP3s or Oggs or whatever? I'm not going to post a poll just yet, as people may change their mind (I know I did with the 2D/3D poll).

Sound effects: not a lot really to decide on when it comes to format and so on. MP3-encoded WAV files perhaps (we could get better performance, at the cost of memory usage, by preloading and decompressing the sound effects)? Or even just uncompressed WAV files?
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Post by mp3Pro »

I would think either mp3 or mid for the music... and the player should be able to add his own tracks
umm uncompressed wav is neat for the same reason... custom sound
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Post by uzurpator »

On today's cpus mp3 eats like 1-2% cpu power. What other option do we have?
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Post by Arathorn »

I say MP3. But maybe we can just allow Winamp during the game for music, I myself don't like the TTD music after some listening time.
For the sound effects I also think MP3, why use bigger WAV files?
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Post by orudge »

Well, I posted four options up there. ;)

For the sound: you can quite easily create an MP3-encoded WAV. It's really just to save space - PCM WAV would be better for game performance.

From a quality point of view, I think Ogg Vorbis would be better for music. It's higher quality than the equivalent MP3. Plus it's patent-free.

I think giving the user might be good. We can quite easily support all the formats.
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Post by orudge »

Arathorn wrote:I say MP3. But maybe we can just allow Winamp during the game for music, I myself don't like the TTD music after some listening time.
That's why I suggested a custom playlist, like Simutrans has - you can then specify your own MP3/MIDI/MOD/Ogg/whatever files to play, in addition/instead of the TM/TT2 music.
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Post by mp3Pro »

just putting in my 2 cents worth

not being able to change the midis in TTDdos has always been a pet peeve of mine..
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Post by SHADOW-XIII »

Playing WAV should bepossible to ... and maybe AC3 ?? and I heard that there is another commpression method called mps (or m3s .. don't remember) maybe this to ??
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Post by orudge »

AC3 - possible I suppose, but it's not used very commonly (well, it's mainly used in movies and so on)

And I don't know what the other format you're talking about is, sorry.
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Post by Lilman424 »

I say MP3s then I can put my KaZaA playlist in as the TT2 music. :))
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Post by SHADOW-XIII »

*.mps - heard it is the newest compression method (twice better than mp3)
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Post by Omnislash »

SHADOW-XIII wrote:Playing WAV should bepossible to ... and maybe AC3 ?? and I heard that there is another commpression method called mps (or m3s .. don't remember) maybe this to ??
AC3 is digital sound. Unless you have a proper sound system it would be pointless. And the work that would have to go into just the sound would be a lot for nothing. Most people only have small speakers on there pcs.
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Post by SHADOW-XIII »

yeah .. I know ... but you have good speakers ... :mrgreen:
anyway .. so we will not use ac3 .. but what about *.mps
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Post by orudge »

Omnislash wrote:AC3 is digital sound.
So is MP3, Ogg Vorbis and even bog-standard old WAV! :roll:
Omnislash wrote:Unless you have a proper sound system it would be pointless. And the work that would have to go into just the sound would be a lot for nothing. Most people only have small speakers on there pcs.
The decoder can, what's-the-word it down to just stereo. I agree though that AC3 is overkill in this situation. I think we should give the user a choice, and support all the formats I originally mentioned - it's certainly possible.
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Post by Omnislash »

orudge wrote:So is MP3, Ogg Vorbis and even bog-standard old WAV! :roll:
I know that. But AC3 is the proper thing. I don't know of any pc games that have that. Must admit more and more PS2 games have it though.
orudge wrote:The decoder can, what's-the-word it down to just stereo. I agree though that AC3 is overkill in this situation. I think we should give the user a choice, and support all the formats I originally mentioned - it's certainly possible.
I agree. We need good sound of course. But it would be a lot of time when in most cases it would be all just out and pumped out 2 speakers instead of 5!
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Post by gasp »

Microsoft Audio 4?
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Post by Raichase »

If we use mp3, we should have an easy way to copy in out own music - i wanna add my sonique plalists...
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Post by orudge »

Well, obviously, I don't know how playlists will be stored, but probably in XML, if we do use it. The format will be quite simple though.
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Post by Jan »

Don't you need to pay royalty if you use mp3 in project? I red it somewhere.
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Post by Omnislash »

Jan wrote:Don't you need to pay royalty if you use mp3 in project? I red it somewhere.
Its only a format. I doubt you do.
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