How To Synch An Amiga Tracker Without Midi ?

Hi there,

It’s my first message on the board, so here’s a short presentation. I’m from France, I’m 32years old, and I’m making music on soundtrackers since 1992, on amiga 500 and then, on a1200.

I 'm currently building (literraly, with home made furniture and stuff :lol: ) a new bedroom studio, based on a dual core linux PC (Tango Studio 1.1), a few midi controllers (Kontrol DJ 500, yamaha DJX, and maybe also a android tablet if I can figure how it works) and of course, Renoise (for now on demo version, I’ll register in a few days). I still have my a1200 fully working (4mo fast ram, SSD 2go harddrive, pcmcia CF card reader), and it would be really cool if I could synch it (using chiptune-dedicated software like AHX or Art of Noise) in Renoise.

As far as I know, only OCtamed soundstudio can be used with midi (slave or master), but I’d prefer to use a software really dedicated to SID-like sound processing. The problem is that those softwares are not MIDI.

SO I believe it’s impossible to synch it to Renoise, and the only way should be sampling the tracks from the amiga, and then work them in Renoise as samples. But maybe there is another way ?

Thank you for your help.

The old Amiga trackers have a different timing so the 125BPM is actually not really 125BPM, it was pretty hard to synch a tracker with any external Midi device anyway.
SID-like soundprocessing? for as far as i know only the C64/128 are capable of doing that. Whatever i heard on the Amiga regarding “Chiptunes” i considered utter rubbish for the majority of releases (No filter / pulse and proper arpeggio’s make simple wave-sound samples sound boring pretty fast). If you want SID sounds controlled by Midi i could suggest you to take a look at the SID station
Any other than that, Renoise should be quite capable of doing what generic trackers could do.

What software do you actually use on Amiga regarding synth sounds?

I planned to use AHX, for example. I’m an octamed user first (sample based music), but I recently discovered some nice demo maker tools like AHX, wich are able to create some nice c64 flavored sound with amiga’s Paula soundchip :

Regardless of the music style, the sound itself is pretty convincing IMHO, more than a lot of (expensive) VST plugins or samples bases 8bit chip sounds I heard.

But if it’s not possible, I think I’ll simply buy a c64 with a Mssiah cartdrige, and it will be a lot simplier (but not that cheap :lol: ).


Yes, how could i have forgotten the good old AHX. I could never get my hands on AHX back in the days though…
Nevertheless regarding arpeggio’s, you can still sneaky do some magic with the pitch envelope in the instrument editor and you can apply some filters and a bit of pulse modulation. If you want to combine stuff, then you need to add native effects on the tracks though. Most of the magic is simply added with pulse and filter modulation. the bald sources are sine/saw/pulse and noise waves anyway.

A c64, well, there is also still Sidplay and Vice emulator. The Sid emulation has been evolved to perform quite good and quite accurate nowadays.
I can’t recall a plugin that makes good use of Michael’s particular Sid emulator though…

A c64 with Messiah cartridge may not be as expensive as a second hand Sidstation…

Yes, AHX 's got great sound ability. And comparing from what I heard from virtual synths/plugins, even if Paula is not a synth chip, it’s got some nice sound colour.

By the way, the Sidstation never was an option for me :lol: It’s more expensive than my car :D

Too bad that AHX can’t be controlled by midi. If it was like OCtamed SS, I’d simply create the instruments using AHX engine, and then, “call” them in Renoise, inserting the audio in the renoise PC.

I believe the cheapest way (not speaking of mssiah+c64) will be sampling the patterns from the amiga, and then, rework them in renoise. But I think I’ll definitly buy a c64 ASAP.


Maybe you might want to check out Ploque Chipsounds, which covers almost any oldschool chipsound.

Thank, but I think I’ll make a try with the amiga (any ideas or help welcome), and if I can’t do what I want, I’ll buy a real c64.

I just tried AHX on my amiga, it’s a killer app. The sound is just great. Even if the instrument editor is not very easy (but once I’ll get used into keyboard shortcuts, it will be easier I bet).

Tommorow, I’ll try OCtamed sound studio synth editor to see if it can be used the same way. I hope so, because Octamed (and some third party plugins) manage MIDI pretty well.

The theorical idea I have is to create typical 8bit sounds on my amiga real hardware, make instruments with them in a tracker, and “drive” them in Renoise by midi. I know octamed can do that, but will it be able to sound like AHX ? I don’t know for now.

On the audio side, I’ll enter amiga sound in my soundcard line input, and mix it (and probably add effects) on the linux side (perhaps into Renoise, I don’t know if it’s possible, I’m a completly beginner…As I say I’m building my bedroom studio right now).

thanks for the help.

edit : I saw this :

Maybe it can be tweaked for my kind of “bliiip bliiip” sound ? :lol:

edit 2 : Everytime I go on Renoise website I’m discovering new features :o

or that :

These seems to be good canditates for that kind of synthetic sounds, and everything is included in the software :dribble:

I’m sorry posting here without some real help, But just wanted to say that I really like to see that I’m not the only guy still wielding an Amiga.
I used Digibooster pro til 2002 as main sequencer before migrating to Renoise.

But I know there are boxes that make midi work on amiga like on this old pic of my setup:

As I recall, it worked with OctaMED. If I still had it I would donate it to you, maybe you can find something like that around the web.

Have you tried the synthsound editor in OctaMED? As I recall it was a bit of a bitch to work with but with some patience and a bit of scripting you can get some chiptune style noises out of it…


Me too, i love to still use my Amiga 4000 for tracking+++ love AHX,Future Composer…love to watch a good old cracktro with a kickass chiptune:-)
Radium Midi sequencer,Octamed SS, B&P:-)

Very kind move. I searched on the web for one of those old midi cartdrigdes, it’s more difficult to find than I expected (even on Vesalia amiga shop, wich is quite of a reference these days). Then I searched in my own computer wreck, and I found my old 1 in - 3 out cartdrige…in a really bad condition. I hope I 'll be able to fix it.

Uploaded with

These amigas 's got a kind of magic in them. I trashed dozens of PC hardware, I kept all my amiga related material (even the broken ones, as you saw on the pic) since I’m a teenager. Probably because I’m getting older, and it’s something related to the good old days :lol:

But I believe they still can be usefull in a modern homestudio, like other old machines like atari sts, c64 or whatever. Even if on the amiga, you don’t have a SID chip, and AHX and other demomakers tools produce (if I understand correctly) some kind of “emulation”, the sound stills sounding “real” because inside the amiga, you find an old school soundchip, with own defects of course, but it’s certainly why the sound is so colourfull.

COncerning Octamed SS synth abilities, I’ll make a try as soon as possible. For what I remember, it was quite tricky. It’s why I used to make music mixing amiga samples and midi sound from my yamaha keyboard. But if it’s the only way…

In the worst case, if I can synch the amiga by MIDI, I’ll simply make my sound and patterns on it,and then sample them to use in Renoise. It will be not as convenient, but it’s better than nothing.

On amiga french forums, someone told me about Aegis Sonix, the first amiga software synth. Seems quite powerfull, and midi-able.(synth demo around 1min30). Add a ring modulation (hard of soft), and you’ve got something quite epic :lol:

Seems to produce really cool sound (that Paula sound chip 's got some horsepower! :lol: ) :

That software and hardware is about 25years old. I’m still impressed :yeah:

Perhaps it 's THE solution. I have to see how it works in midi (in octamed you can assign 16 MIDI intruments, for example).

[quote=“dem, post:11, topic:34285”]
Very kind move. I searched on the web for one of those old midi cartdrigdes, it’s more difficult to find than I expected (even on Vesalia amiga shop, wich is quite of a reference these days). Then I searched in my own computer wreck, and I found my old 1 in - 3 out cartdrige…in a really bad condition. I hope I 'll be able to fix it.

Amiga Midi Interface

But you know there is Triple Play Pluss and Qudra midi interfaces with 3 and 4 ins for Amiga if the software supports it:-)
My TPP works like a charm:-)

Thanks ;)

If I can’t fix mine, I’ll take a look on that one.

The thing about the SID of the C64 is that the sounds are generated using default oscillators and filters and pulse modulation is applied on these signals.
I have worked with several different music routines on the C64 (In turbo assembler) and programs routines and constructed my own sounds back at end 80’s.
The bottom layer is to put specific wave types in a sequence to get a basic sound idea (like Noise - Sine - Noise in different sizes for a basic snare) and then apply filter values or pulse values to give these sounds a more spiffy edge.
It isn’t hard to achieve these kind of sounds using the instrument editor in Renoise either, just take care you have the basic samples from the SID (Noise, Pulse, Sine and Saw) if you really need that 8-bit idea.

I tried to find the name of the MIDI box and I came across an ancient hardware site, where I posted it apparently.
It’s called a Pyramid Midi gate.

Hope this helps

Thanks for the answers.

I’ll try to find those “basic samples” you spoke about. Any help appreciated for that ;)

edit : I found something here :

Is that what you mean ?

But in this video :

The musician seems to start from a blank empty instrument, and “draw” his own sound ?

Yes, you can do that in Renoise. It is a bit harder to draw a “Noise” sample though.
The sample pack is from the 8580 SID though, not the 6581 SID.
But i guess basic is basic, Major differences were in the filter and pulse schemes anyway.

OK, that’s make sense, thank you !


Waiting to fix my midi interface, I played around with the recorder, it’s easier than I tought ! I was able to make my sounds and patterns on the amiga side, and record them live into renoise.

I’ve got a lot of configuration to do, but it’s definitly use-able.

Nice to see that there are some Amiga users still in here :)
I have also a A1200, and before migrating to Renoise, I used a tool called Miditracker. It is a protracker like tool, but does not use the audio, but Midi only. It supports midi-synch also, perfect for using with synths/samplers.
But I think it will not help you.

Besides the sidstation, there is also the HardSID. It quite evolved and is now available as USB. You maybe check it out: