"By far the most active area in tracking software these days is in Windows. It's strange then, that there are still so few Windows trackers".
That's what I wrote in the 1998 version of this FAQ and what a difference a year makes, because here we are up to our eyeballs in new Windows based trackers. The best thing about this is that they are not all vapourware! They actually exist!! :-)
Yep, finally, at last, Windows can be said to contain some very decent trackers indeed. Really has to be said that the MODPlug Tracker has improved beyond all recognition to the early stuff we saw in absm only a couple of short years ago. MPT is now a very mature, stable Windows tracker and although it was arguably first on the scene, it's been joined by MadTracker, Versa Tracker, et al.... There's still plenty of vapourware out there too with projected versions of IT3 for Windows, ReTrack (a Windows FT type) and still another FT3 for Windows! Whether any of these ever see the light of day, we'll have to see. On that front, IT3 looks very promising - at least judging by the screenshots doing the rounds.
The long awaited PC version of the Amiga favourite OctaMED Sound Studio is still not known. Alpha (or test) versions of this tracker are downloadable from the OctaMED site. At the time of writing, release is set for 3rd Qtr of 1999.
- Modplug Tracker
As we were finishing this update this tracker was being released in it's 'final' version 1.4, although it's always best to see the site for more current versions.
The ModPlug Tracker is a 32-bit Windows 95/NT application,
featuring a lot of options to create the best possible output
(Up to 48KHz, 16-bit,stereo): 32-bit internal precision for
mixing, dithered to 16-bit, MultiPoint cubic and quadratic
spline resampling when High Quality resampling is selected
Support for MMX acceleration Volume Ramping option, to suppress
pops and clicks due to sample offsets, and big volume changes
(Also creates more realistic volume slides) Digital Bass Expansion
digital low-pass filter (filter range and depth customizable in
Advanced Player Options) Dolby Pro-Logic Surround support with
custom delay and 100Hz-7KHz filter depth 4-delay lines Reverb
Option with cross feedback, simulated early reflections, with
customizable depth and delay Noise Reduction: attenuation of
the background noise by filtering very high frequencies in the
sound Stereo Separation option (25%-400%), useful for headphones
5-bands Graphic Equalizer (requires fast floating point support)
DirectSound support for low-latency mixing on hardware-accelerated
soundcards Up to 64 channels supported for editing (up to 80 virtual
The following formats are supported for import: .669: UNIS 669,
669 Composer modules.FAR: Farandole Composer modules,.IT: Impulse
Tracker modules,.MDL: DigiTracker 1.x modules .MOD: ProTracker
modules (4-32 channels,15/31 samples),.MTM: MultiTracker modules,
.NST: NoiseTracker modules,.OKT: Oktalyzer Modules,.S3M:
ScreamTracker III modules,.STM:ScreamTracker II modules,.ULT:
UltraTracker modules,.WOW: Grave Composer modules,.XM: FastTracker
II modules All the above when zipped (*.MDZ, *.S3Z, *.XMZ, *.ITZ,
ModPlug Tracker can save in the following formats: IT: Impulse Tracker
modules. MOD:ProTracker modules (4-32 channels, 15/31 samples). S3M:
ScreamTracker III modules. XM: FastTracker II modules. WAV: Wave Files
(Direct-to-disk recording) There are two display modes, to respect FT2/
IT notation: MOD/XM (commands are displayed from 0 to X) and S3M/IT
(commands are displayed from A to Z) You can edit multiple songs at the
The following sample formats are supported in the current version:
.WAV: Uncompressed Windows Wave File (PCM 8/16bit, mono/stereo),XI:
Samples from XI instruments. .PAT: UltraSound GF1 Patches (8/16-bit
mono) .S3I/.SMP: ScreamTracker 3 / DigiTracker Samples .RAW: Support
for importing any file as RAW sample data. FastTracker II XI
instruments are supported for import/export.
- MadTracker 2.02
Programmed by Yannick Delwiche
NEW in 2.02: volume slide effects in volume column, delay effect for
stereo samples, pattern expand/shrink functions, improved pattern copy/
paste function, better FastTracker effects support, better S3M support,
some small bugs fixes, nice new font
Features: Bilingual: English and Francais, runs under Windows NT4 and
Windows 95 (or above), intuitive-customizable-windowed interface,
ProTracker & FastTracker shortcuts, 32 tracks - 4 polyphony channels
per track, 32-bit internal mixing with 16-bit interpolation, very
accurate pitches (40-bit precision), volume ramping (48-bit precision),
advanced click removal (the old note is cut while the other one begins),
New Note Actions, 1 volume column and 1 panning column, FastTracker
effects + New effects, 2-bytes effect parameters, drum pattern editor,
uses stereo samples, track effects (delay, stereo delay, filter, flange),
automation (envelopes for tracks volume & effects), wave file export
(upon 'professional' registration)
File Formats Supported:
Modules: MadTracker 2 Module (*.MT2), Extended Module (*.XM), Impulse
Tracker Module (*.IT) (import only), Scream Tracker Module (*.S3M)
(import only), ProTracker Module (*.MOD) (import only),
Instrument Formats: MadTracker 2 Instrument (*.MTI), FastTracker 2
Sample Formats: MadTracker 2 Sample (*.MTS), Microsoft Wave (*.WAV),
Macintosh AIFF (*.AIF), Amiga IFF (*.IFF),
MadTracker also supports Mad Tracker Extensions (*.MTX) where add-on
routines will be added for extra effects, moves etc. Look out for
some exciting innovations with this tracker!
Mad Tracker is shareware with two levels of registration: normal
($20) or 'professional' ($40). The 'professional' registration
allows the use of an MT 'Wav' writer and specialised ugrades.
http://www-inst.eecs.berkeley.edu/~kagrama/vst/ Web Site
- VersaTracker 1.0
Programmed by Khaled Agrama
VersaTracker has a wonderfully easy interface, anyone familiar with
MODplug Tracker will recognise Versa Tracker! This currently
supports the loading and playing of XM's, S3M's, MOD's, and IT's
(versions 2.12 and earlier). However, please take note, editing
anything other than XM's will not work properly. Full MOD, S3M,
and IT support are planned for the final release.
Currently, the tracker downloads with an html file which mentions
some of the shortcut keys and commands. This is the only help
currently available, but hopefully it should be enough to get you
going. The tracker has two main sections: the instrument editor
and the pattern editor, and is easily one of the most intuitive
Windows tracker currently available.
And finally, the continuing campaign to get OctaMED onto the pc...
- OctaMED Soundstudio V1.00
Octamed beta 12 by RBF Software
If you want to try out a Demo version then you can download it via the Windows pages of the OctaMED Web Site at:
Some early FAQ details about the program can be found on the PC pages at the above site.
HTML Version of ABSM FAQ maintained by Mister X, © 1998/99.