DOSBox Pure MIDI woes

Hey everyone! I am having problems with General MIDI in DOSBox Pure core which I don’t have in regular DOSBox core or standalone.

First problem: when using SF2 soundbanks with DOSBox Pure synth, the music sometimes starts playing out of tune, in wrong pitch. It can be fixed by resetting the core but it’s very annoying to reset every time this happens.

Second problem appears when using frontend MIDI: the instruments are wrong, piano is used instead of many other instruments. Looks like some Sysex related issue. This happens with different frontend virtual midi devices, both standard MS soft synth and CoolSoft VirtualMIDI with SF2 patches are affected on my side.

As I said above, both these issues only affect DOSBox Pure core and are not present in other DOSBox cores.

Also an unrelated question but the one not worth making a separate thread: how do I report database errors? I.e. a game version being detected as another version with auto scan and import


It works fine for me. PURE works differently than standalone.
How are you doing to load the .sf2?

This is the database site.
But, before you make the report. The DOS database does not support all the sets and the one it has, is very obsolete. I created an unsuccessful report to update the databases.
What is the name of the set you are loading?

In this core, it is recommended to do a manual scan.

I put sf2 files in the system folder and then select them in DOSBox Pure audio settings. I’ve tried different soundfonts.

Regarding the database issue, after checking the Github link that you’ve provided, I found out that Retroarch only checks the CRC of the main executable, which may be shared by different versions of a game. Retroarch DOS datfile only has one instance of the game with the said CRC and in my case (Doom II version 1.666) it happens to be a more rare regional (German) version, despite the fact that regular version was far more common. Total DOS Collection, which Retroarch datfile is supposedly synchronized with, has all versions and CRCs for every file, not just the main executable, so the issue is on the RA side.

This is correct. Ideally, a report should be generated, but I have a feeling that the problem is the configuration.

Does it only happen to you with that game or with all of them?

I have many soundfonts, I have tried the complete “500 Soundfonts Full (GM Sets)” package and it works perfect.
I just tested the game “DOOM II- Hell on Earth v1.666 German (1994)(id Software, Inc.) [Action].zip” and works well.

Maybe you changed something that is affecting it. First reset the settings in: Quick Menu » Manage Core Options » Reser Options.
And be sure to configure “SETUP.EXE” in General Midi, Sound Canvas or WaveBlaster (they do the same thing).

If the error persists, the following would be to delete (or rename) the “retroarch.cfg” file, in the RetroArch directory. Sometimes updates generate conflicts.

If the problem persists, it is recommended to generate a log and create a report in the PURE Github.

I know, and the TDC dat it takes as a base is very old, it has 8 thousand games, the current version is over 30 thousand. And as it checks the .exe it ignores the Redump or Tosec CD and Floppy.
Here I tried to explain it to him, without success. We only have to make the list with “Manual Scan” and place the thumbnails manually.

P.S: I’m curious, why do you want to use that German version, 1.6, if all the texts are still in English?

Thanks, but resetting the configs didn’t work. MIDI output with different SF2 soundfonts still gets out of tune from time to time while Frontend MIDI setting has correct pitch but wrong instruments.

And no, I am not using the German version of Doom II :smiley: I use US 1.666 which is incorrectly detected as a German version because they share the same DOOM2.EXE file.

Edit: I’ve just tried Doom II v.1.9 and encountered the same MIDI issues, so it’s not the game bug either.

What do you configure MIDI in the frontend for?
It should not be configured with soundfonts.

This is one more problem, neither floppies nor installers. On the other hand it does recognize the Beta. O_o
Scan Driectory/File is far from being usable, so Manual Scan is recommended.

I mean that I’ve tried both external frontend MIDI and internal DOSBox Pure (sf2) options and they both have issues.

Frontend MIDI and DOSBox/Pure MIDI are different things.

The problem is here, you can’t use both.

Where did I say that I try both at the same time? I don’t think you understand what my problem is

At no point, neither have you said that you use it separately.

PURE works fine and if you are having problems with your separate synths, the problem is not PURE or RetroArch. Good luck to you.

I said it right there in the OP: “first problem when using X”, “second problem when using Y”.

The problem is exactly with DOSBox Pure, because DOSBox Core and DOSBox SVN RetroArch cores work fine without issues with either midi option. Please stop responding with “it just works for me” if you have no answer.


NO! It works fine with everyone, the only one with the problem is you.

Okay, I assume that you have problems understanding OP so let me try to make it more clear:

Issue 1: internal DOSBox Pure MIDI setting with sf2 banks = occasional wrong pitch

Issue 2: external fronend MIDI option which includes either standard MS synth or separate VirtualMIDI synth (which uses sf2 banks) = wrong instruments

These are TWO separete issues with TWO different DOSBox Pure settings, which are also impossible to use at the same time so stop assuming that I’m trying to do something that is not possible by design.

Do you understand how useless your response is? I am sorry for being rude but if you:

a. Have trouble undetstanding what the isssue is

b. Not a user who has encountered the same issue

c. Not a developer

…then I very politely ask you to stop flooding

sf2 soundfonds work fine for me, at least the one im using.

However, frontend midi is busted and i get the same issue as OP (wrong instruments, various bugs).

Can you recommend a soundfont that works 100% without issues for me to test? Thanks!

I am using EmperorGrieferus SC-55 one and also a smaller one which uses real decoded SC-55 samples.

Try this soundfont, it sounds good for me (and i compared it with SC-55 soundtracks uploaded to Youtube) in both DOOM games and Duke Nukem 3D:

Also make sure you are using DOSBox 0.9.9 and not 0.9.8, that one had regressions with soundfonts.

You can’t do anything about frontend midi, this was always buggy in this core. But this soundfont should cover your needs.

28 posts were split to a new topic: Are recorded soundfonts legal? What about ripped ones? Discuss!

Guys, can we stay on topic please.

I’ve created an issue on Pure github regarding the frontend MIDI option because it’s easily recreateable

For internal Pure MIDI “out of tune” issue, I haven’t found the way to recreate it. It appeared once since I updated to the latest RA and Pure versions.

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the report, how nice.

I am very anxious to see how the MIDI interface works, which is waiting for polyphonic binary sounds, with soundfonts, which are wav-like wave sounds.