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Report bsnes audio results on your free OS 
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ZSNES Developer
ZSNES Developer
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Joined: Tue Jul 27, 2004 10:54 pm
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Post Report bsnes audio results on your free OS
Please specify if you're using Linux or BSD, which distribution, your CPU, your sound card, if your main sound system is OSS 3, ALSA, or OSS 4.

The available drivers are as follows:
"ao" - libAO
"alsa" - Advanced Linux Sound Architecture
"openal" - OpenAL
"oss" - Open Sound System

You can set which one by setting in the config to one of the four above. You'll have to restart bsnes for the changes to take effect.

Please describe how the AO, ALSA, OpenAL, and OSS each work for you, and which you felt sounded and performed the best. Please test all that you can, if one isn't available for your OS, or setup, then please mention so.


Computer 1:
Debian Linux x86-64, X2 2.2 GHz, Realtek ALC850, OSS 4

AO - Pretty bad, worst of them, music is very choppy.
ALSA - Not available.
OpenAL - Very good, but not always full speed, however can play with the speed regulation when using this driver.
OSS - Terrific, very low latency.

I find OSS to work the best here, unless I need speed regulation.

Computer 2:
Debian Linux x86-64, Core 2 Duo 2.2 GHz, ICH8, ALSA
AO - Bad, but tollerable, again the worst one, choppy.
ALSA - Decent, but a little bit choppy.
OpenAL - Same as above, perhaps a bit more choppy.
OSS - Sounds perfect.

I found OSS to work the best here too. Speed regulation doesn't work with any of them though.

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Mon May 05, 2008 11:51 pm
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Gentoo Linux 2.6.23. Pentium IV 2.8Ghz, Sound Blaster Audigy 1. ALSA.

ao - smooth as silk as long as my CPU could keep the framerate up, high latency, though.

Alsa - smooth as silk as long as my CPU could keep the framerate up. VERY high latency.

openal - occasional choppiness, CPU usage seems higher becuase I had to keep the frameskip one notch higher. Almost no latency, though!

OSS - about the same as OpenAL. Maybe a little more latency.

I really need a faster CPU for this.

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Mon May 12, 2008 6:08 pm

Joined: Wed Jul 02, 2008 3:35 pm
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Kubuntu Linux 8.04 x86-64, Core 2 Duo E6750 (2.67Ghz), Sound Blaster X-Fi XtremeGamer, OSSv4

ao - No sound at all, framerate goes through the roof.

alsa - Exactly the same as ao.

openal - Perfect, clean sound and no latency that I could hear. All games held a steady 60FPS with no frameskip.

oss - Pretty bad in most games, with pops and crackles all over the place. It was particularly bad in Mega Man X3 though, where the added strain of the C4 chip showed bsnes was significantly slower with oss. I had to crank the frameskip up to 3 to get a steady 60FPS.

It's pretty obvious that OpenAL works best here.

Tue Jul 08, 2008 9:45 am

Joined: Fri Jan 21, 2005 5:17 pm
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Just a quick question: Did anyone try to program for PulseAudio, yet? I personally don't like its overhead, but does it at least have decent latency?

Tue Jul 08, 2008 9:44 pm

Joined: Wed Aug 04, 2004 5:43 pm
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So for the two people with Creative cards, OpenAL (which Creative has a stake in) is better than OSS. Coincidence?

Tue Jul 08, 2008 11:15 pm
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Joined: Tue Mar 07, 2006 10:32 am
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I've long wondered if Creative hide anti-competitive practices behind a veil of incompetence :wink:

Wed Jul 09, 2008 12:37 am
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FitzRoy wrote:
So for the two people with Creative cards, OpenAL (which Creative has a stake in) is better than OSS. Coincidence?

Not at all. It tells us something about how well Creative cards are supported by the different audio systems.

I'll test later, when I'm in Linux, if it's still needed (since the topic seems a month old now).

Tue Aug 12, 2008 9:54 pm
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Joined: Wed Jan 21, 2009 4:41 pm
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Hello! After changing my Gentoo to x86_64 I change zsnes to bsnes. I'm using bsnes with pulseaudio output and fps is ~59-61 in Star Ocean and Bahamut Lagoon. So, I didn't try other audio drivers :)

My system is Gentoo Linux
CPU: Pentium(R) Dual-Core CPU E5200 @ 2.50GHz
Memory: 4Gb
Video card: NVidia 9800GT/512 from Gigabyte

Wed Jan 21, 2009 4:50 pm
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