Playing MIDI Files on Linux


(Michael Barth) #1

Hello there,

So I’ve run into an issue with playing MIDI files on Linux. I’ve learned that in order to do so it requires a soundfont to work, a DLS file specifically. This is all pretty new to me, but is there no other way to make this work properly?

Is there some kind of a default DLS soundfont thing that FMOD would look for on Linux that I could download from a repository? Almost all of the soundfont files I could fine are in this other format SF2, and the only potential software I’ve found to convert those to DLS is something called Awave Studio, but that costs money and I just want my program to work.

Ideally I’d just want this to work out of the box no matter what platform I’m using. I was able to find a DLS file to test it out. It does work, it just sounded like crap.

According to the FMODEx changelog from 2004, SF2 was planned to be supported, but I can’t find anything after that for FMODEx or FMOD 5.

I don’t know what to do. Any suggestions?


(Brett Paterson) #2

If its for personal use, try gm.dls from the windows directory. The license for this file is only to use it for Windows, so I would probably not ship this file, but it would be worth trying out. Otherwise users would create their own DLS banks.


(Michael Barth) #3

I’m aware of that, that’s one of the DLS files I tried that I know I don’t have a license to, hence the problem. I would really like an actual solution. I know Linux has the stigma of DIY, use a terminal for everything and whatnot. However that doesn’t solve the problem.

Like I said before I found loads of SF2 files and I was actually really surprised when I tested them out in Windows how good that they sounded.

But as per DLS, I can’t find anything good that isn’t under some license like that and finding tools for conversion is ridiculous and I’m supposed to expect a loss in quality in doing so even if I can find a tool to do it.

Oh well, I just really feel like there should be a better solution. I care a fair amount about Linux.


(Brett Paterson) #4

if it was me i’d probably be trying awave like you said, have you tried the shareware version? This was the first set of hits I found after googling.


(Michael Barth) #5

It can’t save collections in the shareware version. I already tried. It’s odd, I would’ve figured that there would be many more tools for this.


(Brett Paterson) #6

if you have a particular midi file that you want played, try loading it in mod plug tracker, and then saving it as .it, that should play it on linux, the sounds would be embedded.


(Michael Barth) #7

This still isn’t a solution.

I’m playing back the MIDI files through a virtual filesystem of sorts based on a pre-existing game. You have to own the particular game in order for my application to work, therefore I can’t really redistribute files associated with it.

If I could do that on the fly, I guess it would work, but that still is an incredibly roundabout way of doing it.


(Brett Paterson) #8

ok contact support@fmod.com and i might have a solution for you.