Vortex Tracker help

On the creation of AY or Beeper music, including the packages used to do so.
doone128
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Re: Vortex Tracker help

Post by doone128 » Tue Oct 22, 2019 7:43 am

R-Tape wrote:
Mon Oct 21, 2019 8:27 pm
doone128 wrote:
Mon Oct 21, 2019 7:20 pm
This is what I watched to get me started. It’s all still seems a bit crackers but managed to get a tune or two out of it so far. (When I say ‘tune’ I mean that in the least possible musical sense)
Cheers. I've seen that video, and (after having a little chuckle that David Saphier talks like Justin Moorhouse) I managed to get Vortex tracker to make a noise! I haven't taken it any further because I would need months or years of playing around to get the vaguest understanding of music. I'm beginning to wonder if I'm at the 'old dog new tricks' stage of life...
The old dog is never too old! I'm in my 40s and can confirm that it's still possible to learn this stuff! z80 machine code is another matter and one that I'm failing at badly, but you can do this for sure! I just followed the video step by step to recreate the tune he creates in the video and then went from there. Probably also helps that I bought myself a small USB keyboard - link below. Makes it much easier to come up with a tune than stabbing at the QWERTY keys!

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Re: Vortex Tracker help

Post by djnzx48 » Tue Oct 22, 2019 8:08 am

Vortex Tracker has also undergone a large number of improvements and bugfixes since this topic was created, potentially including fixes for the issues I mentioned earlier. It looks like a Delphi license is needed to build the project though.
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Re: Vortex Tracker help

Post by doone128 » Tue Oct 22, 2019 8:17 am

djnzx48 wrote:
Tue Oct 22, 2019 8:08 am
Vortex Tracker has also undergone a large number of improvements and bugfixes since this topic was created, potentially including fixes for the issues I mentioned earlier. It looks like a Delphi license is needed to build the project though.
Yes - forgot to mention that I'm using Vortex Tracker 2.5!
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Re: Vortex Tracker help

Post by djnzx48 » Tue Oct 22, 2019 8:28 am

doone128 wrote:
Tue Oct 22, 2019 8:17 am
djnzx48 wrote:
Tue Oct 22, 2019 8:08 am
Vortex Tracker has also undergone a large number of improvements and bugfixes since this topic was created, potentially including fixes for the issues I mentioned earlier. It looks like a Delphi license is needed to build the project though.
Yes - forgot to mention that I'm using Vortex Tracker 2.5!
The latest release appears to be version 2.6, although that's been out for a while now.
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doone128
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Re: Vortex Tracker help

Post by doone128 » Tue Oct 22, 2019 9:03 am

Thanks - although the downloads tab only has 2.5. How on earth to you decipher what's going on on that page to download 2.6?
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Re: Vortex Tracker help

Post by Ralf » Tue Oct 22, 2019 9:35 am

The old dog is never too old! I'm in my 40s and can confirm that it's still possible to learn this stuff! z80 machine code is another matter and one that I'm failing at badly, but you can do this for sure! I just followed the video step by step to recreate the tune he creates in the video and then went from there. Probably also helps that I bought myself a small USB keyboard - link below. Makes it much easier to come up with a tune than stabbing at the QWERTY keys!
I guess I'm an old dog too ;) Really don't have any faintiest idea how to start with making music.

And there are actually two levels of confusion here. First thing is mastering different trackers interface. Which are usually quite user unfriendly.

But another thing is making pleasant music, not some combination of random noises. It's like being able to write and being able to write poetry.

Speaking of keyboard I believe that experts of making Spectrum music like Gasman or Yerzmyey don't "type" music on standard PC keyboards but rather use some kind of piano like keyboards connected to their computers to create their songs. I would like to hear if it's true or not.

I asked Yerzmyey once a philosophical question ;) "Do you first think up music in your head and then write it down? Or do you just start pressing keys without any plan and then accept the result or not?" He was quite puzzled ;) I guess that at some moment making music is like walking - you do it but you don't analyse it much.
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Re: Vortex Tracker help

Post by djnzx48 » Tue Oct 22, 2019 11:47 am

doone128 wrote:
Tue Oct 22, 2019 9:03 am
Thanks - although the downloads tab only has 2.5. How on earth to you decipher what's going on on that page to download 2.6?
I don't think the binaries have been 'officially' released. There are copies out there though - IIRC n1k-o used 2.6 for the Aliens: Neoplasma music.
Ralf wrote:
Tue Oct 22, 2019 9:35 am
And there are actually two levels of confusion here. First thing is mastering different trackers interface. Which are usually quite user unfriendly.
Whether trackers are user-friendly or not is probably a point of personal preference. One of the advantages of tracker interfaces is that they are usually more compact than traditional piano roll interfaces.

The initial difficulty I faced when using a tracker was having to remember what each of the columns were for, and what numbers/letters are supposed to go in them. If you're starting out the majority of the columns can be ignored - the most important ones for PT3/Vortex are note, sample and volume. The note columns are just a more compact way of representing note pitches than the standard height on a staff.
Ralf wrote:
Tue Oct 22, 2019 9:35 am
But another thing is making pleasant music, not some combination of random noises. It's like being able to write and being able to write poetry.
This can get more intuitive with practice. I still have MIDI files of the first 'songs' I composed over ten years ago, and they all sound like you describe - completely random sequences of notes with no sense of tune or structure. A way to get better at this might be to try covering an existing tune, focusing on the notes and timing. Having an idea of how the different scales work could also help.
Ralf wrote:
Tue Oct 22, 2019 9:35 am
Speaking of keyboard I believe that experts of making Spectrum music like Gasman or Yerzmyey don't "type" music on standard PC keyboards but rather use some kind of piano like keyboards connected to their computers to create their songs. I would like to hear if it's true or not.
I'm clearly not an expert, but I only ever used a standard PC keyboard for my songs. Spectrum music is generally input note by note rather than performed in real-time, so a MIDI keyboard doesn't give much of an advantage over a PC keyboard for that particular purpose IMO. MIDI keyboards are more useful for playing around and coming up with ideas.
Ralf wrote:
Tue Oct 22, 2019 9:35 am
I asked Yerzmyey once a philosophical question ;) "Do you first think up music in your head and then write it down? Or do you just start pressing keys without any plan and then accept the result or not?" He was quite puzzled ;) I guess that at some moment making music is like walking - you do it but you don't analyse it much.
Personally I need to have a basic foundation ready before trying to write anything down. Others may find it easier to come up with tunes on command, but I can't do it. Ideas may also arrive at random times when you're not expecting them to.
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Re: Vortex Tracker help

Post by djnzx48 » Wed Oct 23, 2019 4:15 am

There are a couple of presentations about AY/YM music scheduled for CAFe demoparty on Friday. Could be worth checking out if you understand Russian.
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Re: Vortex Tracker help

Post by doone128 » Thu Oct 24, 2019 5:48 pm

So here’s what I came up with after watching the tutorial video on here. I made it originally to go on a Spectrum Next game but by the time I’d got this completed, the guy had got music from elsewhere so I decided to use it in the promo of the ZZAP! Retro Gaming Event.

Any opinions and thoughts appreciated!

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Re: Vortex Tracker help

Post by R-Tape » Thu Oct 24, 2019 6:22 pm

doone128 wrote:
Thu Oct 24, 2019 5:48 pm
Any opinions and thoughts appreciated!
It's a thumbs up from me. Good percussion and lead-in. Top work. It would fit an action/adventure game very nicely.

If you can do this—you can definitely do z80 asm!
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