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Chapter 14. Music Tracks > Playing Music Tracks Through a MIDI Synthesizer

Playing Music Tracks Through a MIDI Synthesizer

Although QuickTime’s built-in music synthesizer is fairly good, you probably can get better audio quality with a hardware synthesizer. If you have one of the many hardware synthesizers that meet the General MIDI specification, and it’s properly connected to your computer, you can make QuickTime use the synthesizer to play a music track. On the Mac, you’ll also need MIDI system software, such as Apple’s MIDI software, OMS, or FreeMIDI. (See Appendix C for vendor information.) Windows computers normally come with all required MIDI system software.

To tell QuickTime to play music tracks through a MIDI synthesizer connected to your computer:

Open the QuickTime Settings control panel (Mac OS 9), the QuickTime control panel (Windows), or the QuickTime Pane (Mac OS X, in the System Preferences pane).

From the pop-up menu (Mac OS 9 or Windows) or the tabs (Mac OS X), choose Music to display the Music panel (Figure 14.18) or pane, which contains a list of synthesizers.

Figure 14.18. The Music panel of the QuickTime Settings control panel lists available synthesizers. If you need to list an additional one, click the Edit List button.

If your synthesizer is listed, skip to step 7. Otherwise, click the Edit List button to open the QuickTime Music Playback (Mac OS 9) or QuickTime Synthesizers (Windows) dialog box. (Note: As of May 2001, no Edit List button appeared for Mac OS X; this may change in future versions.)

Click the Add button (Figure 14.19).

Figure 14.19. If you want to add a new synthesizer, click the Add button.

A new empty row is added to the list of synthesizers.

From the Synthesizer pop-up menu for the new row, choose your synthesizer (Figure 14.20); then make choices from the MIDI Port and Channel pop-up menus if they are available.

Figure 14.20. When you click the Add button, a new row is created, in which you can choose your synthesizer.

The large variety of available software and hardware, as well as the many ways it can be configured, make it impossible for us to tell you exactly what you’ll need to choose. If your synthesizer doesn’t appear, your MIDI system software may not be installed or configured properly.

Click OK to return to the Music panel or pane, which should now list your synthesizer.

Select your synthesizer by clicking the radio button for that line in the list of synthesizers (Mac OS 9 and Windows, Figure 14.21) or by selecting a line and clicking the Make Default button (Mac OS X).

Figure 14.21. The new synthesizer is added to the list of available synthesizers. Select the radio button for this synthesizer so that music tracks use it.



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