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Chiptune.app (chiptune.app)
533 points by lindtobias 10 months ago | hide | past | favorite | 178 comments

Jake Kaufman was kind enough to release the entire Shovel Knight OST as an NSF under creative commons, meaning we're allowed to host it and do cool stuff with it. So I'll take this opportunity to plug an NES visualizer I've been working on. Did you know the Shovel Knight OST can and will run on a real FamiCom, using Konami's VRC6 mapper? Knowing that, I can look at the register writes as they're being made, work out the appropriate frequency on the keyboard, and show a piano roll in realtime:


But I don't have a slick interface or a way to browse chiptunes, so...

chiptune.app: 1

zeta: 0

Clearly I need to get to work :) (At the very least, you can load up most NSF files and even NES games, and the visualizer will still run. If you want to know what notes the "coin" sound in SMB makes, now you can.)

FX3 [0] is one of my fav albums from Virt, but I don't think he ever released the source? If I get it right it was composed as .nsf files too.

I saw there was a MIDI file for at least one of the songs (Choppastyle [1][2]), so maybe there's a chance to get the rest of them from somewhere? I'd love to hear a version with modern synth instruments to compare and contrast (although my dream is for a cover of the whole album by www.paulgilbert.com and friends hahah).

NOTE: the redirect from links like [2] is a bit jarring, it would feel more natural if the URL remained (instead of the redirect to [3]). It would also make it easier to share a specific song by just copying the URL.


0: https://virt.bandcamp.com/album/fx3-remastered

1: https://virt.bandcamp.com/track/choppastyle

2: https://chiptune.app/?play=Contemporary%2FVirt%2Fv-choppasty...

3: https://chiptune.app/browse/Contemporary/Virt

I had a rationale for this redirect behavior, but not sure it matches user expectations. The URL will reflect the browse location, but not the playing track...otherwise the URL gets too clunky. You can always copy the playing track from the link icon.

Not sure what you mean but I'm sure you have your reasons!

If it was me, I would change it to something like:

* https://chiptune.app/browse/Contemporary/Virt

... opens the browse folder, as it does now.

* https://chiptune.app/browse/Contemporary/Virt/v-choppastyle....

... opens the browse folder _AND_ focus/selects the given track.

Of course, neither one should play anything by default, but! I would put the play controls on the top of the page, and make the play button bigger and more prominent. It took me a while to find the tiny triangle in the bottom left of the page.

My 2 cents. Awesome project btw! :-)

The piano/waveform visualizer is great, and there's a ton of fun to be had here by turning on and off different instruments. It would be nice if the interface were more discoverable/documented though. :)

(EDIT: also, it looks like chiptune.app does have a sort of piano-like visualizer available from the top-right corner, but it doesn't look quite as nice as yours.)

This is a really cool visualizer. Neat work!

I hadn't realized (or maybe just forgot) your visualization was publicly available, super cool to see the Shovel Knight OST in it! I love seeing your music come up on YouTube/Twitter, the retro piano roll and the waveforms are so satisfying to watch.

Wow, this visualizer is awesome!

amazing visualizer! are there any other games or NSF you would recommend to load up in the visualizer? im not familiar with the world of nes music

Wow, I previously had this domain with a similar project hosted and just let it expire in March. I was really confused seeing it at the top of HN.

"Wait why is my website on the front page of HN? I thought I let the domain expire."

I don't mean to piggyback, but I want to show what I had hosted here before:


OPs project is obviously much more impressive, but it's cool to me that the aesthetics are similar and both come from similar places. A nice reminder that the internet is actually pretty small I guess.

Also, I'd like to introduce people who may not be familiar with Chiptunes and trackers to Tim Follin. Tim has a legendary status among NES composers. His music doesn't even sound like it could be coming from an NES sound chip:


Very interesting, had no idea when I bought the domain. Cool project, too.

The fact that the songs play instantly when you click makes me sad for literally all modern software.

Not sure I follow. I just tried with Spotify on my phone and desktop (oooh Electron spooky) and any song plays instantly.

I actually find that Spotify is super buggy. If I switch devices it doesn't work (I have to select the new device at least five times), when I go underground with my phone it's super slow to realise that I've lost connection, and I usually have to restart the app for it to continue playing music.

My major issue with Spotify is that they keep changing the UX on me every week. I hate being part of some terrible a/b testing that I didn't consent too. They already have my money, why do they feel the need to tamper with my experience more? It's extremely infuriating.

I remember something was posted to HN a while ago about exporting your playlists from Spotify. That's my current hurdle to leaving the platform, if I can do that and whichever service allows me to import these playlists I'll be leaving.

SongShift is what I use. The free version works well enough, and goes either way between Apple Music and Spotify, probably supports other services.

For me switching playback device is quick and reliable if the device is a PC or phone. Whenever I try to select a connected Google speaker... it takes like 3-5 tries. I've found it is more reliable to use voice commands to get the speaker to play Spotify then I can use a phone/PC to select the song/playlist/podcast/etc. but it's kind of frustrating it just doesn't work well to begin with.

Big tech UIs are never made to satisfy the user. They are made to balance you between annoyance and acceptance. Just enough that you wont leave, but still getting frustrated by the aweful mechanics. In a way its also a good thing. Gives room to create a better variant

I think the point is that "all modern software" has all kinds of delays and buffering before playing, in contrast to this site where the audio just plays instantly and reliably.

This is not a consistent experience for everyone.

Try Apple Music, lol. They’re still working on starting tracks quickly and smoothly.

It's just a variation of the standard "all modern software is garbage because Facebook and Twitter are garbage" nonsense complaint.

Replace "Facebook and Twitter" with "Electron" and you would be right.

Would these not play instantly in electron too?

If you have 5 terabytes of RAM, electron is perfect.

I hate electron and the CTOs that use it almost as much as I had “cross-platform” mobile apps.

That sort of garbage is coding to the lowest common denominator of device rather than optimizing the app for the capabilities of the hardware.

It’s important to be mindful that the engineering is a minority slice of all the decisions that go into a product’s development.

The reason why some engineers need to be managed by Product and Project is that they don’t think hard about all the constraints, such as the cost of developing multiple native apps vs. the benefit that would provide.

This is often due to a failure of empathy: many engineers envision the common user being like them, when really the common user doesn’t know, notice, or care about whatever this “Electron” thing is.

I’ve seen, time and time again, developers having loud opinions about how choosing X over Y is because people are dumb, or cheap, or inexperienced. Those are all possible, but not nearly as common as they think. They’re easy explanations. But I rarely see developers do the engineering part where they quantify the issue and make a case for picking X over Y.

If developers hate Electron so much, the answer is to develop the skill set for making an informed argument that isn’t limited to just things like RAM and latency and file size. These often aren’t compelling business reasons. They’ll either learn more about why Electron gets picked, or they’ll have a solid case to make for why not to pick it.

> as I had “cross-platform” mobile apps

I'm on a four-person team building a React Native app. RN is awful, I'll admit, but it would be impossible to work at the pace we do if we were maintaining fully parallel Android and iOS codebases.

Besides, it's the hardware's job to optimize for the capabilities of the SDK.

I was with you for the first paragraph. But that's just despicable thinking:

> Besides, it's the hardware's job to optimize for the capabilities of the SDK.

You can't possibly blame the hardware manufacturers for how poorly React Native runs. Even if the CPU engineers wanted to target React specifically and make it run better somehow (and you seem to think they should), where would they begin? React sits on top of 35 layers of software abstraction and runs in 2-3 virtual machines, how could they target RN?

Assuming they could add magical instructions that benefit React somehow, who's going to patch the 34 lower layers for React to benefit from it? The manufacturers? The React team? You?

I don't have any performance issues with React Native[0], so as far as I'm aware the status quo is fine with regards to how well the hardware is optimized for the SDK. The specific SDK I'm referring to is JSCore, obviously everything on top of that is third-party.

[0] My main beef with React Native is the total lack of useful stack traces. Also, when running on a device, when you tap Debug before manually setting your dev machine's IP, the app is bricked and you have to delete and reinstall it.

"The app is bricked"... .Surely thats not the case ? Rebooting the device or killing the process is not sufficient ?

VS code is written using electron, so as with all tools, it can be done right. There's a nonzero chance that you've probably used it yourself.

> and the CTOs that use it

This is why you need to become king. In many places, it is the only way to truly deal with this nonsense. Top-down.

If you want a big org to defenestrate electron, your #1 mission is to generate a very scary narrative that electron is a 'legacy' technology and that your competition is already 2 steps ahead. You could spin little lies like "I overheard a member of KPMG discussing our competition's use of SSR and native local apps to deliver leading-edge UX while at lunch last week".

The super shitty thing about electron is that it does, arguably, reduce the overall complexity of delivering an end solution (regardless of the UX). My traditional arguments that complexity is at the heart of all evil do seem to go hard against this idea that I can code an app one time and deploy it everywhere. Clearly, this is not how it works out in practice, but the savings are definitely somewhere in the middle and detectable.

What does HN think about the complexity argument for using electron?

They don't though? I just clicked between two tracks a few times. Each time I switch there is a very clear delay between the click and the playback starting. You can even visually tell there's a delay because the row only becomes highlighted when playback of that track starts.

Check the download graphs in your browser's network activity monitor.

> when you click

When you click, you download packages between 30kb and 300kb (roughly speaking); the player is surely already in memory - that is your latency. For systems that run immediately on machines with a fraction of power.

This comment makes zero sense considering that mod/XM type tracker files are mere kilobytes in size as opposed to a streamed OGG or MP3 file which is megabytes.

The relative compression is much, much higher for the equivalent of "vector" music over high bit rate "raster" digital audio codecs.

For those who want MP3 files to use locally, there’s the Stone Oakvalley collections, recorded from real Amiga and Commodore 64 computers:

• Amiga Music Collection (SOAMC=) <https://www.paula8364.com/>

• Authentic SID Collection (SOASC=) <https://www.6581-8580.com/>

If you are on macOS, download the .mid file and open it in Garageband and listen for how much (free!) MIDI synthesis has improved.

Btw I just want to say that I tried CANYON.MID and it sounds worse in GarageBand. I guess like using retina display to see old JPEG files, the imperfections now visible.

You're right! Why is that? Shouldn't regardless of the app (Chrome vs GarageBand) the sound be the same? I mean the underlaying player should be the same right?

That's the nature of MIDI files. They don't encode audio, they encode a set of instruments with a list of notes. It's up to whatever's playing them to provide what those instruments actually sound like.

Here's an example of the same MIDI file being played back on several different devices: https://youtu.be/eiMP-PlL6VM?t=954 It's clearly the same song on all of them, but it sounds slightly different.

Modern browsers do not support MIDI playback on their own, so chiptune.app is presumably doing it on its own with its own (likely intentionally retro) sound font providing the instruments.

Additionally even if macOS had its own system-level MIDI synthesis (not sure if it does), GarageBand would actually probably still be different since it's main purpose isn't MIDI playback -- it's to be a DAW.

MIDI does not have a sound. It's just instrument data. The classic "MIDI sound" that you recognize is the Roland GM soundkit shipped with Windows (an early version of Roland's Virtual Sound Canvas product).

This website uses a different instrument set. You can actually select which one it uses in the Settings panel, but by default it uses Kenneth Rundt's GMGSx.sf2 (which does sound quite a bit Roland-y to me), as shipped by SynthFont.

I don't know what instrument collection GarageBand uses.

MIDI files only contain a description of (simplifying somewhat) the rhythm and base pitch of notes, and which instruments they should be played on, so the realisation can vary drastically depending on the particular system and configuration (e.g. soundfont choice) it's played back with.

Am I blind or are there no SID modules? C64 is like 90% of tracked music that I'm listening to. :(

In the scene people always set SIDs and tracker chiptunes apart, because of how technically different the two are. There's an enormous technical complexity of having to emulate not just the SID chip (which still isn't 100% understood) but also the 6510 CPU and even some of the C64's CIA timers to accurately replay SIDs, whereas almost all sample-based tracker music from the Amiga and PC need none of that effort. Replaying SIDs is even more complicated than emulating e.g. SPC700 of the SNES, the PSG sound of the SMS, or the YM/OPN2 synthesizer of the MegaDrive.

> also the 6510 CPU and even some of the C64's CIA timers

yes, but also the VIC timers and the PLA. So basically you need all of the c64 chips emulated, at least in part :)

I wrote a simple SID player for fun and I feel like it's 20% shy of being a full c64 emulator, all it needs is video output and keyboard/joystick input.

I have a physical SID chip and I was looking at implementations of players and ... was shocked at how complicated they are. I guess it makes sense though: SID files are tiny because they are in effect full C64 native programs that generate music. It would be hard to do otherwise on that platform.

I wrote a simple program that transformed basic (60hz, no PCM-style hacks) SID programs to like sequence of byte instructions for the SID chip so that I could replay without emulating and the file sizes are massive compared to the original!

Here is an awesome single file SID player written in C,


Oh, wow! Such a compact cpu routine! Thanks for the link.

I wrote mine in C too and it's basically a 1k line switch statement for every 6510 instruction :) I went the extra mile and made it cycle-accurate though.

libsidplayfp is probably the best emulator out there. It actually emulates voltage levels at one stage. The wiki has a bunch of info on SID reverse engineered from die shots https://github.com/libsidplayfp/SID_schematics/wiki

Sample based tracker formats shouldn't be considered chiptunes. The latter is supposed to mean sound generated by dedicated hardware with automatic waveform generation, envelopes, and filtering. Doing it all in software by mixing samples isn't the same.

Sample-based tracker music and the Amiga scene is where the term and the artistic style was born. The Amiga scene and the musicians of that era are the authority.

That's where "tracker" originated. "Chiptunes" are a more recent denotation and imply hardware generated sound different than a tracker.

The term chiptune, and the technical approach and associated musical character, was firmly cemented in the Amiga scene already in the first half of the 90s. The composer who coined the term (in the beginning of the 90s) was legendary computer musician Matt "4-Mat" Simmonds. Everyone understands the difference between oscillators and sample playback, but notwithstanding the term being "technically lopsided" this is still the history of it.

Meanwhile, there's GoatTracker (tracker for SID music).

And SID Factory and a couple of others.

Any recommendation for Multi-SID? There should exist a six channels GoatTracker - I am not sure anything else is available.

cheesecutter apparently also supports dual sids: http://chordian.net/c64editors.htm

May I recommand to you the High Voltage Sid Collection? It is a collection of curated SID songs in a neat package, and it is updated regularly! https://www.hvsc.c64.org/

The whole HVSC is available on DeepSID, an online SID player: https://deepsid.chordian.net/

Oh, I have HVSC, probably on most of my devices. I was expressing surprise about the project's lack of SIDs not my lack of it! :-D

To be fair, nobody called c64 music "chip music", it was just "music/tunes" because c64 music is really just code so in a way all of it was chip music (excepting some digi tunes).

The term chip music was coined on amigas and newer computers to differentiate it from regular sample based music.

C64 modules here: https://chiptune.app/browse/Game%20Mods/-%20Arranged%20-/

Of course these are indeed modules, arrangements by someone else than the original composer, and not SID tunes per se.

Now you get an entire thread of nerds explain you the etymological history of sound chips and the huge differences between a sid program and the mid format despite having perfectly working converters in both directions.

You are not blind! This is my personal bias showing, I should really add SID modules to the catalog.

Yeah, it’s a bit strange omission.

Playing samples in patterns and computing coded sound are completely different efforts.

But the site already has tons of tracker music, as well as other not-strictly-chiptunes like an incredible number of .mid versions of classical music and contemporary pop songs of all things.

Tracker files: audio samples as instruments played by a table of notes and variations.

MIDI files: a table of notes and variations for playing default samples for instruments.

Chip synthesis programs: code that generates sequences of sounds, requiring some specific synth engine.

The former two have a radically different (lack of) complexity compared to the latter...

I know, but I don't understand your point. The site is full of .mids and mods, as well as other mod-like formats ripped from various devices. I'm not even sure if it does have any actual chiptunes, as in synthetized in realtime!

You wrote that you find it a «strange omission» not to have included SID tunes in a collection of «mids and mods». Well, simply, the coder must have had an engine capable of playing the latter, which is simple - and not an engine capable of playing the former, which is complex.

Man, VGMusic.com was my Spotify in the 90's :)

I don't know much about the MIDI format, but there was one song [1] that I used to love listening to on Windows 9x. I guess the file took advantage of some 9x quirk, because the orchestration is completely busted in modern Windows and macOS. I'm so happy because this site plays it just the way I remember it!

[1]: https://chiptune.app/?play=vgmusic.com%20MIDI%2Fconsole%2Fse...

MIDI has no sound on its own, so it depends on the thing playing it. Windows' MIDI synthesis might have gotten worse, or you remember it on the particular sound card you had with 9x.

Here's a video I found of one of my favorite games sounding completely different from how I remember it: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=inn7IE6-wgY

What a good demo! Yeah, I think I has to do with "updated" MIDI synthesis logic. The issue involves some of the harmonies; on modern devices, they start but never stop, then begin to layer on top of themselves, making it a total cacophony haha.

Try the settings in the player, it has loads of soundfonts to try, they all sound very different. If it's a midi file, it all depends on what sound card or installed soundfont you had at that time.

Ah thank you! I tried different combinations of Synth Engine and Soundfont but wasn't able to replicate the issue :/

What is playing this back? When using the inspector, I see it actually downloads the .mid file. I didn't grant Chrome access to my MIDI devices (not that I'd have any connected) and it was still playing the audio.

Is it playing it back with some internal samples and a playback feature, relaying it to the OS, or is this a Javascript player?


Oh wait, I just turned on the Visualizer, which makes me think that this is all done in Javascript, including the audio rendering?

I'd guess the hard work is done by the WebAssembly blob. There are open libraries written in C and C++ for the rendering of just about any audio format into a sample buffer. For General MIDI playback you could use e.g. the TiMidity++ or FluidSynth libraries, which use instrument data from SoundFont files.

The settings offer a variety of playback options, including FluidSynth—with a choice of SoundFonts—or direct Web MIDI.

This is wild. Anyone who’s more into this space than I am have any editorial comments on the various SoundFont options?

…listening to Space Quest III…

The Roland SC-55/SCC-1 one would probably be an authentic sounding choice for GM/GS game soundtracks after the early 90s, since a lot of the soundtracks were actually composed with it. Doom (and its sequel), Duke Nukem 3D, Descent, the Warcraft games (though the WC2 composer(s?) used an SC-88 as well) just off the top of my head.

Or Masquerade 55, if you want higher fidelity but with SC-55 replacement in mind.

Space Quest III predates General MIDI altogether. I assume that the original soundtrack was composed for the Roland MT-32 and that the ones you are listening to have been remade into GM by fans, or maybe it was added in a later version. It would be nice if this player contained an MT-32 emulator since so many Sierra (and other) game soundtracks were composed for it specifically. Such a thing already exists: https://github.com/munt/munt

GMGSx Plus is basically a Roland SC-55 sound-alike, except with the Piano patch swapped with a nicer one from GeneralUser GS. Good tradeoff of size and sound quality.

There's a huge variance in Soundfont quality, and the craft put in by Soundfont authors to program all the modulators properly makes a huge difference. GeneralUser is one of the best. https://schristiancollins.com/generaluser.php

MIDI playback does not require a device and is baked into the OS via QuickTime's synthesizer and Microsoft GS Wavetable Synth.

Nice! Love the huge library, I wonder how much time was put into compiling it.

Reminds me of a Chiptune player I made a wile ago (with Chiptune.js), but with only like 20 predefined Cracktros. If anyone is interested: kleemans.ch/static/chiptune

Searched for any chiptunes (in the original meaning) on that site, the only ones I could find are here: https://chiptune.app/browse/ModArchives/Dreamfish. Perhaps there are more?

In the 1990s chiptunes meant *tracker (Protracker, etc.) tunes with short loops used as instruments.

For me it meant sid, and a bunch of ym trackers on atari st. The mods where just chip style. That said i really loved those old chip mods

Absolutely no one referred to SID, YM etc. tunes as chiptunes in the nineties.


"The term is commonly used to refer to tracker format music using extremely basic and small samples that an old computer or console could produce (this is the original meaning of the term)"

emphasis on that an old computer or console could produce (this is the original meaning of the term)

chiptunes on Amiga (mod, xm) where reproducing samples of the sounds created with HW synthesizers (CHIPs), like, for example, the C64 SID, one of the most popular ever.

For example the intro of "Cannon Fodder"[1] on the Amiga is not considered a chiptune, because it used samples from real instruments and a human singer

For some original true chiptune, see the amazing work of the amazing Rob Hubbard[2]

The 8bit electric guitar of Skate or die still gives me goosebumps almost 40 years later[3]

[1] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PiYuq6Ac3a0

[2] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rob_Hubbard

[3] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vqRXxPl6bXA

"emphasis on that an old computer or console could produce (this is the original meaning of the term)"

Yes, old computers and consoles with sampling capabilities. Chiptune means to "emulate" older sound chips with sampling hardware.

In the nineties SID music was just SIDs.

"For example the intro of "Cannon Fodder"[1] on the Amiga is not considered a chiptune, because it used samples from real instruments and a human singer"


"For some original true chiptune, see the amazing work of the amazing Rob Hubbard[2]"

Rob's work is amazing, but I really don't think he'd refer them as chiptunes.

In the early nineties, as a demo (intro) coder you wanted a chiptune when you had space constraints. 40 kB total for code / gfx / music, which was a pretty common size limit for Amiga intros that time, so you had maybe 4-15 kB for the chiptune.

How do I know? I was there.

I was there too.

Not disagreeing with what you wrote, I was replying to "Absolutely no one referred to SID, YM etc. tunes as chiptunes in the *nineties*"

They absolutely did in the 90s.

I was organizing chiptunes nights in my city in Italy in the late 90s early 2000s and we were calling it either 8bit music, chip music or chiptunes.

I did not invent the format, I discovered it in Berlin at the times.

The guys in Berlin told me that they imported it from Tokyo ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

> For some original true chiptune, see the amazing work of the amazing Rob Hubbard

His Commando tune is pure gold, I still love it after about 40 years since the 1st listen. A real song that I plan to make a rock cover one day, hopefully before I die (did I say I'm quite lazy?:) Others already did metal covers, sometimes with good results [0]. My idea is to keep it funky like the original and use mostly real instruments.

0: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f2rws8l4Kiw

You may be correct about wording, it was a life time ago and I only spoke about this in Swedish. I think one of the trackers I used called itself a chip composor, there's a nice archive of these things things (some of them quite recent) here https://dhs.nu/files.php?t=chipeditor

"Chiptunes" means that some microprocessor was used as a sound synthesizer. In the initial years, you coded the tune. Then a standardization happened, as music code could be generalized in "sound patterns" definition and organization: hence, e.g., Chris Huelsbeck's Soundmonitor (1986). That is one of the first public "trackers". The name comes from the Ultimate Soundtracker on the Amiga (1987) - but the Paula was more typically used as a sampler, not as a synth. Speaking of "chiptunes" implies a style - that may or may not be the output of a tracker (it depends on how it is used).

I'm old enough to remember playing games with chiptunes, but young enough to not have known what a tracker was. This YouTube video (from the amazing Ahoy channel) is an incredible, in-depth overview of trackers, their sound and history:


Web-based music player for a variety of video game and chiptune music formats.


"Redial" in this folder is one of the best and most underrated video game songs of all time.

Very nice.

Also check out the Soundfont conversion - not perfectly accurate, but sounds nice https://chiptune.app/?play=Nintendo%2064%20(SoundFont%20MIDI...

(I spent entirely too much time on these conversions...)

Thanks for pointing this out! Actually a bunch of other songs on there are really great.

18-Ooze has voice??

Always had thought there only were chiptune sounds

The N64 has no native sound processor -- just PCM sample output. Game developers often integrated some form of custom sequence or MIDI format, combined with PCM samples, and some playback code running on the N64 CPU. The miniusf file format is a bit of a hack, it basically packages a copy of the ROM together (sometimes stripped to just the audio code / data, but not often), a savestate of registers/RAM, and runs a full N64 emulator with the graphics code stripped out. [0]

So what you're hearing is just the playback code shipped in the game, plus all the samples it came with.

[0] http://hcs64.com/usf/

Wow this is really great, thanks for sharing.

This is awesome! And maybe a good place to plug my similar perpetually-almost-finished chipmusic app? It's basically the OP link but shuffle-only, but you can sign up and favorite songs you like (as well as keep track of your listening history).


It's supposed to display a random pixel art GIF from Giphy but they probably changed the API in the last two years.

I originally had chipmusic.fm but $99/year for a domain is hard during hard years.

Great web app, I like the simple static page with 90s aesthetic.

My only complain is that track selection is inconsistent among systems, for example on Sega Master System the game tracks is spread among individual .vgm files but on Nintendo all the tracks is contained on a single .nsf file, which I find disavantadgeous compared to the former one because you have to go through all the tracks to find what you want.

I would rather if track selection would be uniform on all systems by spreading them to individual files like Sega Master System does.

It brought me back to childhould memories, I remember the songs of the games I played. I wish there were links to all the games's info.

Very cool but... there's my favourite track, Foregone Destruction from UT99, but can't link it because the URL is too long, and for some reason the song skips. :(

For the nostalgia, here it is: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i_0G6WPuss4

Man, I would kill to have this as a standalone app on my phone with all of these midis loaded.

Check out Modizer by yoyofr. (Hope it's still on the App Store)

Just made a simple remix : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KWzK_wAPc68

Additional feature idea (for remixing)

- Play several tracks at once

- Keyboard shortcut to toggle each voice channel (soundboard)

The folder structure is such a mess that I thought it only does midi but I used the search bar and was amazed by the crisp SID rendition. Should add a filter toggle to remove all the midi spam.

I cannot find any SID music.

Same. Found a number of mods covers of C64 tracks, but not found a single sid.

I had a look again and you are right. What I was listening to was a mod remix of a sid tune. Do I feel silly now.



by david wise. what a gem. and here is the obligatory, very well done mini-doc about this track, and the incredible technical achievement it took to make it:


They have Dancing Mad from Final Fantasy VI.

That composition is equivalent to painting the Sistine Chapel with only crayons and making it look 95% the same.

Nobuo Uematsu is an impressive man.

That the MIDI instruments are so good and the emulated playback is so accurate is amazing. It sounds better on my iPad Pro than it ever did on a large 4:3 TV. Damn impressive.

Many hours wasted on this 2P game with a neighbor: https://chiptune.app/browse/Nintendo/Jackal

The fact that there is a whole folder of Necros‘ tracks just makes this amazing. What a great time to be a teenager that was. Recommended:

Martian Lovesong

Point of Departure

Paranoid Android

What a neat project, kudos! Wish I'd had the idea to do something similar as a React fun / spare time project, this sparks joy and new interest in doing something with web audio.

Also very polished, the UI really looks like Norton Commander or something similar and is still perfectly usable on a phone.

I remember a classic Amiga OS styled website that had lots of chiptunes to download. It really worked like the Amiga OS, with movable, resizable windows and a file explorer etc. Can't remember the URL. I wanna say chiptune.net, but apparently that's not it.

Oh it was https://www.chiptune.com/ but it has an invalid TLS certificate now.

Hm, most songs from Unreal 1 have actually 2 tracks in them: One calm one, and one when fighting happens. But that player seems to only play the first one. VLC (and back in the days Winamp) plays both, one after the other. Would be cool if it could play both.


Also, it’s so unexpected to see this text-style UI scroll smoothly or update the progress bar smoothly.

I see there's an Project AY folder, but will there come any Atari ST tunes? I'm specifically wondering about The Union Demo by The Union (1989), including intro from The Carebears, and many more.

These tunes bring back some incredible memories form my teens.


I see that some of the files came with a "txt" link that shows some credit info, which is nice. But I can't find any credits for the site itself, is that intentional?

For people trying to play this in Safari: reload the page if you get no sound. I’ve some experience with safari on mobile and wasm. Audio is unfortunately quite wonky.

Safari specially on mobile usually wants audio to be user initiated (e.g. triggered by a click/tap), to prevent autoplay surprises I guess?

For anyone into SID, I can highly recommend C64 radio: https://c64radio.com

I would also suggest <https://kohina.com/>.

Are these all actual tracks from games? I'm a jazz fan and I never knew tunes by Chic Corea, Wayne Shorter, etc., were incorporated into games?

I think some of them are just midi versions of famous songs.

I really enjoyed the Xtree Gold vibes of the website. I used to own a Gravis Ultrasound back in the day, and this UI and music took me back there.

If you like Xtree Gold, then check out the updated successor:

ZTreeWin https://ztree.com/html/ztreewin.htm Free 30 day trial period (USD $29.95)

Love this but unfortunately the sound has significant issues on a cheap Android phone. I'm sure it will work the the laptop though.

Very fun! I wish I could send a link for a song and have it play when it is opened. I have a friend group I would share that with.

You can link directly to a song. When a song is playing, down the bottom, click the link icon.

Eg. Sonic 3 ice cap zone https://chiptune.app/?play=Sega%20Genesis%2FSonic%20the%20He...

You can do this by right-clicking the currently playing song title in the footer and copying the link. Dang, I wish this was more discoverable.

Anyone can recommend anything to listen to on there? I already know (since back then) and still regularly listen to:

- Unreal 1

- Megaman (1-7, X, ...)

- Super Metroid

- Chrono Trigger

- Zelda

Preferring actual chiptunes over MIDI.



  - Pokemon crystal

  - Tales of Phantasia (It's probably top 5 in best OST for SNES)
  - Donkey Kong series
  - FF Series
  - Terranigma   Some good tracks, like:
    - Evergreen
    - Sanctuary
   - Earthbound (not recommended but I do enjoy some tracks)
    - In winters there is a genius
    - Heartless Hotel
    - Megaton Walk
     Some notes, Many of the tracks here are actually pop music, (Even the Beatles!), but its been mashed so much its indistinguishable. theres a nice youtube video about it.
   - Super Mario RPG (And my name bookie is fantastic)
   - Street Fighter 2
   - Kirby
   - Sim City    (City is just 5/5)
   - Anything Mario really     (Kart, Bros)
   - Spider man Maximum Carnage
   - Tetris Attack ("Forest stage" is super chill)
   - Uchuu Race Astro Go Go
   - Tetris & Dr mario (I've listened to this so much, I'm 
  unsure if its good)
  - Tiny Toon Adventures: Buster Busts loose (A little zany 
  but I like a few)
  - Zombies Ate My Neighbors
    Last but not least is ZAMN, which has one of the best tracks for the SNES, Mars needs cheerleaders (and also Pyramid of fear). It is genuinely good

I could make a bigger list, but I think after PS1 and N64 costs too much CPU and you're better off getting nonchiptune.

Some Mentions

  - Layton (DS)
  - Saga Frontier 2 (PS1)
  - dot hack (PS2)
  - Megaman Battle Network Series (GBA)
Its strange, you have to dredge through so much chiptune to find some tracks so recommendations list are always nice.

Ah yes, Donkey Kong Country, Mario, and Terranigma are already in my playlist. Thank you!

Vectorman 2 - Intro A https://chiptune.app/?play=Sega%20Genesis%2FVectorman%202%2F...

Sonic 3 - Ice Cap Zone https://chiptune.app/?play=Sega%20Genesis%2FSonic%20the%20He...

Note that these are links to individual songs, not just folders, but you have to click once anywhere on the page before the linked song will play.

I tried to find some other classics like the moon theme from Ducktales or Flower Garden from Yoshi's Island or the Bust-A-Move/Puzzle Bobble music but they're not present in their original forms.

Also interesting is that they have CANYON.MID and PASSPORT.MID in a folder with a ton of other songs from some software I've never heard of called MidiSoft Recording Session. I wonder if the others are any good? https://chiptune.app/browse/Demo%20MIDI/MidiSoft%20Recording...

Thunderforce III - Stage 1 / hydra on the Sega Genesis / Megadrive is probably one of mu favorite game music ever. But really the whole playlist is nice.


Also on the same console I like a lot of soundtracks from games that were ported from Amiga: Lemmings, Lotus, James Pond II, they all have some kind of cert different character to traditionnal consoles music.

I still listen to all of the following regularly. Castlevania IV and ActRaiser in particular have pretty incredible arrangement and sound design for being so early in the system's life.

From the Super NES:

  - Super Castlevania IV
  - ActRaiser
  - Axelay
  - StarFox
  - Gradius III
  - Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles IV: Turtles In Time
  - U.N. Squadron
  - Final Fantasy VI (III in the US)
From the Genesis:

  - Sonic 2
  - Sonic 3 & Knuckles
  - Ranger-X
From the Unreal Tournament Soundtrack:

  08 - Botmca
  11 - Enigma
  17 - Skyward Fire
  28 - Foregone Destruction
Note: I think there's something up with chipplayer.js' tracker playback because some of these Unreal Tournament tracks were definitely playing slower than they should.

Lizardking’s stuff is great, e.g. Triton Theme: https://chiptune.app/?q=lizardking

Thank you all for all the recommendations! Will listen through them when I have time. :D

The MOD player seems to have some problems with the sequencing and tempo in a number of files on multiple browsers/devices.

The Piano e-competition MIDI files are great!

Anyone know the "fair usage" status for stuff like this? Can I host this myself without getting hit by lawyers?

The settings to turn on/off voices and adjust the effects is amazing for sampling parts of legendary songs.

Minor nitpick: volume slider is unstyled in Firefox. Great web app otherwise, I love shuffle play feature.

I have midis not included in the onlymidis and midis folders. I can mail a floppy disk with the fills!

I can confirm this is the real deal by its inclusion of my favorite soundtrack: Donkey Kong Country.

I am looking for Japanese Tokyo train melody tunes. It would be great if this library includes them

Looked for rave, stayed for Ravel :)

Awesome. I didn't know my browser can play midi files. Firefox Developer 116 on macOS 13.4.1

The browser can play any sound so why not MIDI files. To be clear, the default implementation here is that this uses a soft synth (FluidSynth) compiled to wasm to render MIDI to waveform data - this is not how browsers classically played MIDI through the OS sequencer. It does also support sending out MIDI data to external devices though.

Great app. Though the files for 'The Elder Scrolls - Arena' seem to be missing.

I love the visualizer, how you can basically follow along on that keyboard at the top.

Didn't have some stuff I looked for. Modarchive lookup might fix all that.

“Let ‘ss kick together!” .. All the Raizing soundtracks are just pure fire.

this is extremely cool when it works well!

my poor pixel 3 can't play back almost anything on the site without constant popping ( resembling artifacts, I think? ), which is sad

God, I forgot how bad the Genesis sound synthesizer sounded.

This, this is so good.

The classical piano pieces sound great in the Pianoteq VST.

Yes! Proud owner of Pianoteq myself. Performance MIDI + Pianoteq is better than a recording, because it's so tweakable, and has a noise floor of zero.

Can't tell you how glad I am to hear that at least one other person has used Chip Player JS this way.

Where is that option? It's not in the list of SoundFonts that I see.

Very nice interface, sadly no keygen music :(

very cool I like the UI. Wish it had the catalog from keygenjukebox do net though.


Labor of love, excellent!

search outrun-b.mod

I have been chasing a really cool remix for this track for ages. It's like an amped up techno/psytrance remix...all I remember is it was done by something team or team someone?

Does anyone know what I am after at all?

is this open sourced? the audio is clicking on my phone

Love the retro UI

castlevania all the way baby!

canyon.mid never disappoints

Dunno who made this site, but I have feedback:

1. The on-site Feedback link sends you to Twitter where you must become a paid, "verified user" to message the author. I am not signing up for Twitter, much less PAYING for Twitter, to provide feedback.

2. Would be good if you could link directly to a track on the website.

3. You should be able to click anywhere on the current row to start playing a track. Currently you have to click the track's actual filename. Clickin the empty space after the filename does nothing.

4. There could be a top list / chart or at least a handful of tracks on the home page which users can start playing right away instead of having to manually search for something.

5. No Bach in the classical folder?!

6. Open source?

Not the author, but:

1. The verified thing is a recent change https://twitter.com/halomancer1/status/1680039297637040129

6. It is, it'd definitely be nice if it was easier to find https://github.com/mmontag/chip-player-js

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