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  3. Tuesday, 15 May 2018
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When I open a MIDI file, no matter what computer, whether it's Mac or Windows, MIDI files sound the same. And as far as I can remember it's been this way for years - maybe 15 to 20 years? Even when I play Doom in Dosbox I hear the same soundfont.

So what is the name of this soundfont? You know, those typical sounds that when you hear it you go "ahh yes the sound of MIDI". (Yes I am aware MIDI doesn't actually haver a sound itself).

QMIDI tells me that on Mac utlises "QuickTime Music Synthesiser" for playing MIDI. Is this the soudnfont's name? Or is it just QuickTime's version of an older classic familiar-to-all soundfont?

Thanks!
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Hi,

I have a laptop with Windows 10, 64 bit, version 1803 and it has the same file "gm.dls" in four locations. It weights 3.28 MB each. On the other hand, in my mac book there is a file "gs_instruments.dls" in /System/Library/Components/CoreAudio.component/Contents/Resources that weights 1.9 Mb. Both versions have a "Copyright Roland Corporation" string inside.

Regards,
Pedro
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  1. more than a month ago
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I don't know about Macs, but Windoze has for a long time (but not now ?) been supplied with something called Microsoft GS Wavetable Synth, and this has been set as the default midi playback device via a midi mapper. This system does use a soundfont file (sort of). The files (on my XP system) are in the Windows\System32\drivers, and the files are GM.DLS and GM.DIS. As I understand it, the sf data is based on a (now) VERY old Roland sound canvas version.

As far as WinDoze is concerned, I'd loaded the Coolsoft Virtual Midi Synth, which in effect replaces the MS system. With that, I'd downloaded a separate SF2 file (Timbres of heaven - there are others) which is nearly 400 Mb, as in about 100 times the size of the MS-GS system! Much, much better!!

Geoff
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  1. more than a month ago
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Pedro, where can I find these files on Windows?
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  1. 4 weeks ago
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Typically C:\Windows\system32\drivers\gm.dls.
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  1. 4 weeks ago
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Pedro, where can I find these files on Windows?


On any Windows 64 bits, the file can be found in:

C:\Windows\System32\drivers
C:\Windows\SysWOW64\drivers

There are two other copies under C:\Windows\winsxs\...

You may be interested also in this original announcement from Microsoft:

https://news.microsoft.com/1996/10/22/microsoft-licenses-sound-canvas-sounds-from-industry-leader-roland-corp/
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  1. 4 weeks ago
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Since this thread has been re-awakened, I might add that I'm now not at all sure that the file/data in the 1996 original Wavetable Synth is actually anything to do with 'soundfont', although it might well be digital data. The data stored in sf2 files nowadays may be any number of levels of greater sophistication/quality.

However, it may well be that some (perverse ?) person might actually have sampled the Roland sounds from 1996, and created a genuine sf2 souindset. Supposedly for an original retro experience, so anyone who has not experienced the playing of a midi file with those sounds can do so.

Maybe I shoule compare the data inside the .dls file with that in a .sf2 file and see if there are any hints of them being - even distantly - related?

Geoff
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  1. 3 weeks ago
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Maybe I shoule compare the data inside the .dls file with that in a .sf2 file and see if there are any hints of them being - even distantly - related?
Geoff

I would say it's more effort than it's worth. :p
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  1. 3 weeks ago
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I'm now not at all sure that the file/data in the 1996 original Wavetable Synth is actually anything to do with 'soundfont'


The DLS and SF2 file formats are different but equivalent. It is technically (if not legally) possible to convert the gm.dls file into an SF2 file.
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  1. 3 weeks ago
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The DLS and SF2 file formats are different but equivalent. It is technically (if not legally) possible to convert the gm.dls file into an SF2 file.


AWave Studio imports and exports DLS and SF2 files .
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  1. 3 weeks ago
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Mike
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The QuickTime Music Synthesizer and Windows use a General MIDI and GS Format sound set licensed from Roland. The same sound set was in the Nintendo SDK for some years (I don't know if it is still there). The sound set is a subset of the sounds in the original Roland Soundcanvas and still in any Roland products that support General MIDI 2.0.
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  1. 3 weeks ago
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As far as I know, in the new Windows 10 such a feature is missing.

Windows 10 still has a built-in software synthesizer. It has not been removed.
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