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Commodore 64 SID Mythbusting - Myths and Facts by Grue at Zooparty 2019 - Demoscene

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Published on May 2, 2020

SECRETS OF SID by Grue / Beyond Force & Extend.
Mythbusting 101 about MOS6581/8580, implementations and emulation. What sid is and what it isn't. Can you hear the difference?

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The MOS Technology 6581/8580 SID (Sound Interface Device) is the built-in programmable sound generator chip of Commodore's CBM-II, Commodore 64, Commodore 128 and Commodore MAX Machine home computers. It was one of the first sound chips of its kind to be included in a home computer prior to the digital sound revolution.
Together with the VIC-II graphics chip, the SID was instrumental in making the C64 the best-selling home computer in history, and is partly credited for initiating the demoscene.

The SID was devised by engineer Robert "Bob" Yannes, who later co-founded the Ensoniq digital synthesizer and sampler company. Yannes headed a team that included himself, two technicians and a CAD operator, who designed and completed the chip in five months in the latter half of 1981. Yannes was inspired by previous work in the synthesizer industry and was not impressed by the current state of computer sound chips. Instead, he wanted a high-quality instrument chip, which is the reason why the SID has features like the envelope generator, previously not found in home computer sound chips.

Features
three separately programmable independent audio oscillators (8 octave range, approximately 16 - 4000 Hz)
four different waveforms per audio oscillator (sawtooth, triangle, pulse, noise)
one multi mode filter featuring low-pass, high-pass and band-pass outputs with 6 dB/oct (bandpass) or 12 dB/octave (lowpass/highpass) rolloff. The different filter modes are sometimes combined to produce additional timbres, for instance a notch-reject filter.
three attack/decay/sustain/release (ADSR) volume controls, one for each audio oscillator.
three ring modulators.
oscillator sync for each audio oscillator.
two 8-bit A/D converters (typically used for game control paddles, but later also used for a mouse)
external audio input (for sound mixing with external signal sources)
random number/modulation generator

Zooparty 2019 was Finnish Commodore 64 demoscene event.

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