Power MacThis section was originally written by Barry Nathan <> and Rich "Akira" Pizor <>. The updated information was compiled from Glen Warner's efforts...and checked by Steve Gilmore <>. Barry Nathan <> wrote on Thu, 17 Nov 1994:
  • Player Pro
    Player Pro 4.5: Can access the sound chip directly, so it takes less processor time than SoundTrecker. It'll still work when new Macs with new sound chips come out, because it can also use the regular Sound Manager 3.0 if necessary, like when the PowerMacs came out and Player Pro didn't support their sound chip. Only edits its own format, MADF, but it can import and export MOD, S3M, MIDI, XM, 669, OKTA and MED (as of version 4.5 the S3M import filter is out of beta stage). Version 4.5 also supports multiple samples in one instrument. PlayerPro has a very mixed track record for some of its more obscure import and tracking options, but reportedly plays many of the basic mod formats better than the other Mac heavyweight, Sound-Trecker 2.2. PlayerPro is shareware and until you pay the $20 registration fee, most tracking/editing features are turned off (including import and save) and it will automatically quit after having been open for 20 minutes. A CD-ROM version is also available for $40, which comes with a library of mods and instrument samples. Upgrades are free, except for the upgrade from the disk to the CD-ROM version,which will cost $20 for an upgrade. Unlike Sound-Trecker, it is fully PowerMac-native, which means it FLIES by on a PowerMac.

    Barry <> added: "partially, but not fully, PMac native, but it can do simulated surround sound for headphones or (I think...) Dolby Surround decoders. However, with the Surround option, the fact that it's not fully native really shows, as you hear clicks when you try to do other stuff. However, the slowdown isn't that severe on normal Macs. The two other advantages are that it can play (Okta)MEDs, which Player Pro can't handle, and some MODs play better with it than Player Pro. Keep in mind that with the extra features and bug fixes with Player Pro 4.2, most MODs play -much- better with Player Pro, though, and PP is cheaper."

    Rich 'Akira' Pizor adds: Sound-Tracker is a shell program which plays formats based on plug-ins, providing for maximum flexibility, since plug-ins can easily be written whenever a new format is introduced. Currently, most of the standard 4- and 8-track MOD formats are supported. Also available is a plug-in that makes it PowerPC native. It is also known for having one of the better interfaces of Mac MOD players. The resources for creating/editing MODs are present, yet the appropriate menu items are dimmed. I've not met anyone who could explain this anomaly to me. The two theories I've heard are that you get editing capabilities if you register the program (German ReadMe not too well understood) or that the resources are simply sitting there while the author learns how to integrate the corresponding features into a later release of the program.
Glen Warner then stirs that mystery soup into the following (more relevant) info:
  • PlayerPRO 5.02
    Major changes include --
    • Optimized for G3 processors and System 8.5
    • 'Find and Replace' implemented (as in 'Find' all notes on This track with That sample)
    • Documentation updated (.pdf format) <-- read it!
    • New QuickTime-based (optional) file format
    • Consolidated audio controls into one window ('Mixer')
    • Supports 255 instruments
    • Supports up to 254 tracks ('limited to 99 for GUI reasons')
    • Two separate versions:
      (1) a 'freeware' version
      (2) a 'full' version

    The full version is not available as of Feb99, but you can submit your order at the web page. The 'freeware' version is intended for universal distribution (web sites, BBSes, CD-ROMs, etc.) and will only play .MOD and .MADx formatted files. You can never upgrade it to the full version. The version I tested quit after 20 minutes of playing (I complained to the programmer about this, and suspect it is fixed in the current version).

    The 'full' version will not be downloadable anywhere; you must buy the CD ...and yes, there *has* been a price drop: it is no longer US $100, but US $69. There should be an even cheaper upgrade price, according to the documentation that comes with the freeware version.

    Supports .MOD, S3M, MIDI, MTM, MADx, OKTA, XM, XI, MED, 669, IT, and ULT. For samples, supports System 7 sounds, .WAV and AIFF formats (use SoundApp to convert from other formats to one of the above sound formats).

    Now, for the bad news ....
    • Still no IT 2.14 ('compressed') support (but he's working on it)
    • The freeware version opens rather slowly on my PowerBook 1400cs/166. Have not downloaded and tested on an iMac as yet (soon, though), but I suspect it will fly.
    • New minimum system specs: PowerMac running System 8.0 or higher
    • Still somewhat pricey, but on the other hand, it's cheaper than it used to be.
    • The freeware version will overwrite your original PlayerPRO prefs file; keep your registration number handy!
    • If you don't upgrade to the full version, don't throw out 4.59; you can't compose in the freeware version.
    • There will be no port to Windows (beyond the simple player available now).

    Bottom Line:

    Looks good, runs a little slow (on my system, anyway; G3's should be fine). If you are a registered user, aren't using a PowerMac and actually use PlayerPRO to produce your own music, keep version 4.5.9 handy since you can't compose with the freeware version.

  • MacMod Pro
    Barry Nathan <> wrote: "is now in version 4.15 and has received a MAJOR overhaul. The staff editor works and it works pretty well, though it takes a little getting used to. One nice feature is the ability to record in realtime from the soft keyboard, a feature which isn't (to the best of my [editor's note: this is Akira's] knowledge) supported by any other Mac tracker. It supports anywhere from 4-32 channels and up to 39 instruments. It also allows you to set preferences linking it to specific directories for various files, so when you try to load a new instrument or mod or file, it goes straight to the appropriate directory, rather than having the user navigate to the right place. S3M support has been promised since version 3.0.1, but the format is unsupported as of version 4.15."

    jester then notes: There is no confirmed information about MacMod Pro's native file format yet (I suppose Akira simply forgot to mention it). I also *assume* the program marketing status hasn't changed, so here's the information from the last FAQ revision:] MacMod Pro is shareware. A $25 registration fee is required to unlock the Save option, but all other functions work off the shelf, so you can get a good feel for how the program works and for what it takes to make a mod.

This was the news as of January 30, 1998 posted at the MacMod site:

MacMod Pro 5.11 is now available. Version 5.11 fixes a few problems that sneaked int the 5.1 release. MacMod Pro now comes packaged in a convenient installer. This installer can copy your registration from an older copy of MacMod Pro.
Glenn Warner <> writes in 1999: MacMod Pro has been updated to version 5.2. Testing in progress. Initial impressions: it has been updated to work with MacOS 8.5, and there have been a few bug-fixes. Scrolling in the (G-cleft) editor is as smooth as the previous version. Ships with the same songs, also. Definitely worth a look. US $25 shareware.


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