SOUND BOARD CHIPSET: MWAVE
by IBM

Last update: 12/26/97

Phone:
??
Fax-back:
800-426-4329 (option 2, document 3928)
Fax:
800-426-3396
BBS:
919-517-0001
e-mail:
??
Web:
http://watson.mbb.sfu.ca
Type:
Wavetable
OS/2 Drivers:
Available for some models
Drivers from:
Board manufacturer -- usually in the box; ftp.pcco.ibm.com, /pub/os2_apps, /pub/mobiles, /pub/refdisks (various files), unofficial Mwave web site
Boards using this chipset include:
IBM Multimedia Modem & DSP Sound Card, miroCONNECT 34 wave, Dynalink, Proline-Tesla
Comments:
There are two lines of Mwave chips: the 1000 series and the 2000 series, the latter being more powerful. The very latest Mwave products do not yet have OS/2 support, but these are used mostly in IBM's S-series Aptiva machines and a few other computers with Mwave boards pre-installed. Many Mwave boards can function as modems, faxes, and voicemail systems as well as serving as wavetable sound cards. These boards store their wavetable samples on disk and use DSP code loaded from disk, so there are delays when starting a new function; but this design gives unusual flexibility and the capacity for software-only upgrades of the board's features. Most modem-capable Mwave boards have 28,800 bps (v.34) speed. Driver availability varies with the model; check for a specific model before buying. Mwave drivers present many installation pitfalls and cause problems with Galactic Civilizations prior to version 2.11, but otherwise work well. There's a beta-test OS/2 Mwave fax/voicemail package available. At least one other company is also beta testing an OS/2 Mwave fax/TAM program, but it's under tight wraps. There should be no problems using native OS/2 modem and fax applications with these boards. IBM made MCA versions of some 1000-series Mwave boards, but there are no MCA 2000-series boards available. One person has reported that the default Mwave configuration using IRQ 15 interfered with the secondary channel of an EIDE controller. I've had problems with VTD enrollment hanging with a miroCONNECT board but not with an SB16, but other Mwave users have reported no problems, so this seems to be an interaction specific to my system. Be aware that these boards' modem capabilities, when present, are very dependent upon software in the host OS, so don't buy an Mwave board if you want to use the modem under, say, Linux. This is in contrast to most other multi-function boards, where the modem and sound features are independent, and each is relatively conventional in design. Some Mwave boards may require a MIDI update and/or a CD audio update to get these functions working under OS/2. Some people have reported using the Mwave board's SoundBlaster emulation mode to get 8-bit sound from Win-OS/2 using the standard Windows SB drivers without installing a full set of Mwave drivers for Windows/Win-OS/2. When used in this configuration, Windows telecommunications programs should still be able to use the OS/2 Mwave Modem, but Mwave voicemail software for Windows won't work. The division of IBM responsible for Mwave seems to be distancing itself from the division responsible for OS/2; as far as I know, no recent Mwave products have OS/2 drivers, so this appears to be a dead-end technology as far as OS/2 is concerned. I don't know if there are any Mwave products currently shipping that have OS/2 drivers or that can be made to work with publicly-available Mwave drivers.

Copyright © 1996, 1997, Rod Smith, rodsmith@rodsbooks.com
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