• Throughout this FAQ, modules will be referred to as 'mods'. This term will be used for all types of modules, be they M.K., 8CHN, ULT, S3M, XM or anything else.

    IMPORTANT: Note that the term "MOD" (i.e. capitalized) refers to the group of mods that have this filename extension.
  • A 'track' is a module voice. The number of tracks denotes the number of notes/instruments/voices that can play simultaneously.
  • A 'pattern' is the largest sub-unit modules are composed of. Patterns are arranged in an order or sequencing list, so a pattern can be played several times within the same module. Patterns have a fixed length in most formats, but can also be of variable length in others. The standard M.K. pattern is 4 tracks by 64 rows, for example.
  • A 'row' is the smallest unit of time measurement in which notes can be placed on tracks. A M.K. pattern has 64 rows. OKT and FAR, for example, can have patterns of differing length in the same mod.
  • A 'slot' is an element of a row, dedicated to hold a specific piece of information. These are notes, volume and effects, for example.
  • A 'column' is an element of a track, such as the note column, the volume column and the effect column. A 'column' is a group of 'slots' of one type in a common track.
  • A 'sample' is a digitized sound included in the mod, which serves as an instrument. As mods don't use a fixed instrument set (as General MIDI does), anything can be used as an instrument, including noises or human voices.
  • A 'channel' is a source of emitted sound. Channel and track are often used interchangeably in the mod community. I'd prefer to define a channel as one of a few sound sources, as in stereo or quadro channels, but this would only prove confusing here.
  • A 'player' is a program that decodes mods and ouputs these on a sound device.
  • A 'tracker' is a program that enables creation of mods. Trackers usually feature a 'player'.


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