Mac Classic + TurboSynth possible? (answered)

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Mac Classic + TurboSynth possible? (answered)

Post by part12studios » Sun May 15, 2016 12:49 pm

Hi everyone,

I have a Mac Classic (1990) that's been tucked away for awhile. I was recently thinking about it (when I got a MOTU MTP AV) that has the classic serial cable port. Made me wonder if I could get them to talk..

then it got me thinking about classic software like Turbosynth. The unit booted up fine last night (has after dark on it so it's a fun unit to have just running a screen saver too.. heh)

Does anyone know if Mac Classics could read MS DOS disks? I need to figure out how to get the TS program over to the Mac Classic (if it will even run).

The Mac Classic has 8bit 22khz audio.. but that's not a problem in my mind.. I never used mac back in this era so yea any insight would be super welcome!

Thanks,
Caleb
Last edited by part12studios on Sat Jan 21, 2017 1:59 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Mac Classic + TurboSynth possible?

Post by part12studios » Sun May 15, 2016 3:13 pm

awesome i'm going to try it out today. I've heard so much about turbo synth and of course NIN using it back in the broken days.. just be fun to tinker with it.

I wish it was available for the amiga.. I have two A1200's. working on figuring out Music-X on the amiga currently..

Thanks!
Caleb

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Re: Mac Classic + TurboSynth possible?

Post by commodorejohn » Sun May 15, 2016 3:17 pm

Yes, the Classic has a SuperDrive high-density floppy drive, so coupled with the PC Exchange software that came with System 6 and System 7 it can read PC disks. You may need to get ResEdit on there first to set the filetype of any programs or archives you copy over, though.
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Re: Mac Classic + TurboSynth possible?

Post by part12studios » Sun May 15, 2016 4:59 pm

hmmm ok i don't seem to have PC Exchange on the HD.. posted a question on an old OS6 forum group to see if they know where i could either get it or something.

Also the Mac itself can read a formatted floppy but it won't write too it! Ugh.. if it could just do that i'd be right as rain..

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Re: Mac Classic + TurboSynth possible?

Post by madtheory » Sun May 15, 2016 6:34 pm

I have Turbosynth running in Mac OS9 SheepShaver under Yosemite. Also Passport Mastertracks Pro 6 and Alchemy 3, and Antares Infinity. It's reliable, it's cool, and reading PC discs is a non-issue :)

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Re: Mac Classic + TurboSynth possible?

Post by part12studios » Sun May 15, 2016 6:54 pm

that is cool. i may have to look into that. just to tinker with it and get used to it on the go.. but in the studio i really like the idea of getting the old hardware humming.. i figure the solution must be relatively simple with the right app..

either something for OSX that lets me read a OS7 formatted floppy (easiest solution I would think) and write too it.. that's the issue i'm having with "out of the box" OSX.. it can read the mac disk and get files off of it but doesn't allow me to write to them for some reason.. which i kinda get.. but really it sounds like obstructionism.. not any technical limit..

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Re: Mac Classic + TurboSynth possible?

Post by part12studios » Tue May 17, 2016 5:38 pm

ok so I've been kicking around this idea and had some success and some failure.. for one thing.. i'm running OS6.. not 7.. but i did find "apple file exchange" on a system floppy and installed it.. but then moving files over via MS DOS i believe "distorts" the formatting of the file so the mac doesn't know what to make of it.

So ultimately it seems like getting files to an OS6 device from pc/mac via floppy isn't possible without buying new hardware.. bummer but some things just aren't meant to be. Thanks for all your insight and help. I've learned a lot in this process and I think the next step is going to be to find a good "high end" OS9 Mac.. something like a G4 sawtooth tower.. I've seen some deals around for under $100 I just have to find the right deal..

The bigger problem i'm having is finding PPC that are available, cheap and NOT post OSX machines. heh.

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Re: Mac Classic + TurboSynth possible?

Post by Ashe37 » Tue May 17, 2016 5:57 pm

I've got a G3 tower sittign in storage... it had osx installed but is an OS9 or earlier machine

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Re: Mac Classic + TurboSynth possible?

Post by madtheory » Tue May 17, 2016 5:57 pm

No you don't need new hardware. Commodorejohn already explained that "distortion" problem you're having with the files. You need Res Edit to restore the "File Type" and "Creator". Just make sure you check the file on the Mac in Resedit to get the type and creator, before you put them on the MS-DOS disc.

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Re: Mac Classic + TurboSynth possible?

Post by part12studios » Tue May 17, 2016 7:53 pm

ok i found the program.. i'll see what i can do. strange process i'm not familiar with but i'll report back how things go. i have ResEdit 2.1.3.sea now but putting that on pc floppy will wreck it right?

do i need to simply rename it back to the right name once it's copied over to the mac where i would "unzip" it and install?

it does seem like a catch22.. i need to get a tool on the mac to fix things, but the only way to get things on the mac is using a MS-DOS disk which distorts things that are put on it.. maybe SEA files are immune to the conversion that takes place.

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Re: Mac Classic + TurboSynth possible?

Post by ahaigh01 » Tue May 17, 2016 8:15 pm

Hi part12studios,

I have a Mac Classic running System 6.07 that I use for Sound Designer for Emulator II. I believe Turbo Synth needs System 7 to run, so I haven't been able to use it since I have never upgraded my Mac to 7.

I use MacDisk on a WinXP machine to move files from PC onto the Mac. The demo version allows you to work with floppy-sized files which is sufficient in this case.

Unfortunately my Mac Classic does not produce sound anymore. This is common with this model and is typically caused by bad capacitors on the main board. I need to get this fixed.... :D

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Re: Mac Classic + TurboSynth possible?

Post by part12studios » Tue May 17, 2016 8:26 pm

darn.. about system 7.. i'll at least see if i can get the files over enough to get a legit error "not compatible.. bla bla" or something.. but first i need to see if i can find that program you're talking about.

I have a windows xp VM on my macbook pro.. i'll see if i can get it to work with that. i installed "transmac" but it doesn't seem to know how to deal with floppy disks.

yea sounds likewe have the same machine..

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Re: Mac Classic + TurboSynth possible?

Post by commodorejohn » Tue May 17, 2016 9:21 pm

part12studios wrote:ok i found the program.. i'll see what i can do. strange process i'm not familiar with but i'll report back how things go. i have ResEdit 2.1.3.sea now but putting that on pc floppy will wreck it right?

do i need to simply rename it back to the right name once it's copied over to the mac where i would "unzip" it and install?

it does seem like a catch22.. i need to get a tool on the mac to fix things, but the only way to get things on the mac is using a MS-DOS disk which distorts things that are put on it.. maybe SEA files are immune to the conversion that takes place.
Yes, it's very much a Catch-22 situation and about the hardest part of getting a working transfer between a vintage Mac and a modern computer. There's a couple ways to work around it. If you by any chance have StuffIt Expander on the Mac, you can drag-and-drop the .sea archive onto the program and it won't worry about whether the filetype transferred over correctly. Otherwise, if you have a CD-ROM drive for the Mac, you can get StuffIt Expander off of a System 8 CD and go from there. Finally, if you're out of other options, you can get a raw disk image of StuffIt Expander here, which can be written directly to a Mac-format floppy with a suitable disk image tool (I suggest RaWrite if you're on Windows - if you're on a *nix or OSX system with a floppy drive, you should be able to transfer it directly with dd. It's possible neither program will work with a USB floppy drive, but you could always try it.) And finally, you could always go begging to a classic Mac enthusiast in whatever part of the world you're in, and they will cringe slightly and nod in sad recognition and mail you a floppy disk with the requisite software on it ;)
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Re: Mac Classic + TurboSynth possible?

Post by part12studios » Wed May 18, 2016 4:48 am

@commodorejohn those options look great! I'll explore them soon and report back.. i got kinda sidetracked today talking on a few threads about finding a PowerPC driven Mac to run an older version of Digital Performer (like my setup back around 2001) which would be simpler and much more straightforward.. i tend to get lured into the endless possibilities of modern DAW which can tend to bog me down from making music.. and just wasting time tinkering with tons of plugins / options / etc..

So I found a program called MacDisk and it does let me have my windows xp machine (parallels VM) and I was able to save a word doc from the word from the Mac Classic and copy it over.. however it seems that my attempt to copy over a .sea file still mean that the mac didn't know what the file was.. i don't get it.. it might be though that turbosynth is meant for OS7 or higher (someone mentioned this) but still you'd think it would at least recognize an executable file, just not successfully run it or something..

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Re: Mac Classic + TurboSynth possible?

Post by madtheory » Wed May 18, 2016 6:03 pm

Cripes, Sheepshaver is a lot easier than that to set up! Let's go meta :)

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