It was just some days ago that in my (Pocket PC Thoughts-frontpaged) article on Midi players on the Pocket PC
, Iíve elaborated on the question of playing midi files on the Pocket PC.
In the meantime, a lot
has happened. First, the latest, 2.25 version of GSPlayer
has been released (already supporting playing midi files through a plug-in). Itís (still) based on Timidity (please read the previous roundup to see what it means) and, therefore, doesnít deliver any sound (instrument) quality enhancement Ė itís just easier to use as an all-in-one sound player also supporting midi files.
What is very important, though, is that a brand new instrument set has also been released
for Timidity by Wilson Seto
, which lets for changing some of the original, lower-quality instrument patches to much more natural and better-sounding patches.
As usual, Iíve made high-quality sample recordings (available here
as high-quality WMA files) of the new patch set so that you can test the sound quality without having to install GSPlayer and the new patch set. Iíve also created two additional sample recording with both the old, traditional Timidity patch set and IntelliArt Midi Player 4.0.0
playing the new test midi file
provided by Wilson Seto, which uses a lot of acoustic instruments.
Itís really worth listening to the new patch set, particularly when it comes to playing piano (at about 3:20
)Ė it sounds much more natural than in both the old patch set and, as far as the piano (and some other instruments are concerned), even the IntelliArt Midi Player instrument sets. I also recommend giving a try to the Finnish national anthem midi Ė itís also decidedly better than in the old version (and even in IntelliArt!) Compared to the old set, drums and cymbals are much better too (these were already of very good quality in the IntelliArt set).
Note that not all
instruments are changed. This is why, except for the drums and cymbals, demo.mid
(in which the IntelliArt patch set excels at) doesnít sound much different from the previous patch set.
homepage of the new instrument set is available here
. It may be a bit complicated for casual users so I elaborate here how it needs to be used (don't be afraid if you don't understand it - you won't need to get what it means) Ė along with installing and configuring the new GSPlayer.
- First, download GSPlayer (direct link to the WM5 version here and the pre-WM5 version here). Install it.
- Get the midi plug-in from here (direct link). Install it. Note that you wonít need to get General Midi (GM) Instruments from the same page Ė the new patches include them all.
- Now, get the official freepats patch set from here. Unzip it. Create a directory on your storage card (it can be named anything) and create a freepats subdirectory in it. Copy the two directories Tone_000 and Drum_000 in it (by keeping the directory structure). You wonít need to copy the other files (for example, the two .cfg files in the root.)
This set doesnít contain all the instruments (neither does it contain a config file containing the exact path of each patch in the file system). Therefore, you will also need to download this file. Copy the contents of the timidity directory in it verbatim to the top-level subdirectory on your card youíve created (NOT in the freepats subdirectory in it!). You wonít need to copy the .cfg file, only the timidity directory.
- Now, there will be two subdirectories in the subdirectory of your storage card: timidity and freepats. In the root (where these two directories are), copy this config file.
Now, the directory structure should be like this. (Note that Iíve named the main directory Ďtimidityí on my storage card. It can be anything. For example, in the official instrument set coming with GSPlayer, it's 'gm'.)
Note that the above only discussed a completely new install. If you have already installed GSPlay on your Pocket PC (with the accompanying (original) patch set), just delete the timidity (patch) directory and start deploying the two ZIP files and the configuration file as explained above. If the timidity set was installed in the main memory, you can still safely delete it and create the new directory on your storage card.
Configure GSPlayer to find the patch set
Now, start GSPlayer, go to (Menu/)Tool/Options
and select the Plug-ins tab
. There, highlight the GreenSoftware MIDI plug-in
record and tap Configure
. Tap the Ö file selector button to the right of ďConfig FileĒ
. Go to the directory youíve created on the storage card and select free_tim_pats
. Click OK
; now, the Config File field will be filled in
. Click OK
Congratulations Ė youíre ready to play your midi files at a really high quality Ė in most cases, even better than with the $30 IntelliArt Midi Player