Subject: PAS-16 support et. al.
To: None <current-users@NetBSD.ORG>
From: VaX#n8 <>
List: current-users
Date: 10/11/1994 03:03:24
I have a PAS-16 and developer documentation.  Although I have limited
experience with Unix drivers, I've got two books and would be willing to
help anyone working on a driver for the PAS-16 (and possibly others).
I think many people agree that the MS-DOG and MS-WIN programs/drivers
suck big rocks.  This is one place where Unix could really outdistance the
mainstream quickly. (Examples abound; VEDIT2, for my SBPro, crashed about
50% of the time before I sold it, most of the mod players locked up a lot
and had VERY low sample rate limits, and almost all of the PD sample editors
suck for some reason or another - I couldn't even find one that did 16-bit
samples!  And yes, even DOOM's soundcard support is pretty bad, Id admits it)

Aside: I have always dreamed of doing multi-track mixing in digital on
the hard drive, "compiling" a chunk of digital audio (in raw form) from
sound bites and stuff (sorry, MIDI just doesn't float my boat, and wavetable
doesn't seem flexible enough - I could be wrong though).  However, a few
people have told me they don't think this is "possible" - a fact I really
doubt, since hard disk speeds have plenty of bandwidth to do digital audio;
44100 samples/s * 16 bits/sample * 2 (channels) ~= 1.4Mb/s
or about 172kB/s
Is there some other limitation that would keep you from being able to do this
(aside from disk space, which is pretty cheap IMHO)? Bus speed?
The person I spoke with mumbled something about DMA speed, and showed me a
dedicated SCSI-disk-soundcard-controller that supposedly was able to do what
I want, but I was unconvinced by his technical knowledge.
And, I'd rather stay away from dedicated or proprietary hardware & software.

I'd -love- to work on applications for this kind of stuff where the interface
was at once simple, robust and well defined (like most of Unix's stuff, at
least compared to everything else I'm familiar with).
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