First, I wanna say hello to all the happy people in chipmusic land! My love for chip tunes and new found obsession with FM synthesis, especially that of the YM2612, is the reason why I decided to learn how to use VGM Music Maker. After watching the only decent tutorial video I could find on youtube and reading the VGM help file, I've been doing quite well in learning how to use this complex but awesome program. But I've stumbled on a problem that seems so easy to solve but yet, I have no idea what to do!

Ok here's the deal. I placed a note in channel 1 and tried to apply a note cut effect to stop the note from playing all the way through. The problem is, it doesn't work! This it what it looks like:

7C  | G-4 .. 01    ... |
7D  | ---   ..  ..    ...   |
7E  | ---   ..  ..  EC1 |

The help file says that ECx can be used without a note which will, in effect, cut the currently playing note. That's what I tried doing in the example above. I tried EC1 -  EC9 and it still does nothing. What am I doing wrong here?
Also, the help file says "Zero x value or a value greater than the number of frames in a row will be ignored". What exactly is a frame?? Unless I'm missing something, no where in the help file does it say exactly what a frame is.

I feel really embarassed about asking these questions. I think they are very simple problems but I can't for the life of me figure it out.

Adelaide, Australia

Hi eclipsemod! Welcome to! I'm very happy that you're interested in FM synthesis (esp. the YM2612) - there are a growing number of us here. :]

What I do in VGM Music Maker to stop the note is either use a note off (press the "1" key to put a note off) or just set the volume to "01" then note off for instruments with a long release. I've never tried using the EC1 command. Perhaps someone else can tell you if that works for them.

Also, I think the "frame" may just mean the row of the pattern? I could be wrong, but otherwise it wouldn't make sense to reference that in the help file.

I hope this helps! Have fun! big_smile


If your track is using 1=1 speed, then the ECx command doesn't do anything. You need to use the note cut effect which you place in the same place as the normal notes. For me the default key is "a". It would look like this in your example:

7C  | G-4 .. 01    ... |
7D  | ---   ..  ..    ...  |
7E  | ***   ..  ..    ... |

Oh, and check your Release Rate (RR) setting in your instrument, if it's set to 0 then the sound will keep playing forever after the note cut. The higher the RR, the more sharply the note will cut off. Keep in mind only the output operator RR matters in this case.

If you are tracking with any other speed than 1=1, then the ECx command is very useful. The x has to be a smaller number than the speed to work. For example a 5=5 speed means that every row has 5 frames in it. So if you put a EC4 there, it will cut off the note at the fourth frame inside the row. With this you can let the instruments play a little longer than with the "***" note cut, which will cut the note instantly at the beginning of a row.

YM2612 doesn't like changing certain notes / instruments straight into another without making a popping sound, but note cuts will eliminate most of that. I usually cut off a note just before the change. It will sound more "staccato" now but you can alter the RR to give it some time to fade out.


Thanks for replying guys. freezedream, I tried your way of stopping a note and it works, but I want to learn how to use every bit of VGM mm and not have to use alternate methods when in a bind, though there's nothing wrong with learning different ways to do things.

Tomy, the timing for my track is 1=4. I still couldnt get ECx to work but *** seemed to do the trick and freezedreams method worked too. I'm not sure why. Maybe its related to the RR of the instrument but I don't want to change that as it would alter the sound of the instrument. I think I'll just use *** as it works fine for me at the moment.


I think I know why the ECx still doesn't work. Your speed is 1=4, that means that all even rows have 1 frame in them and all uneven rows have 4 frames. Let's take a closer look from the beginning with 1=4 for example:

00  | G-4 1F 01   ...   | <-- 1 frame
01  |  ---   ..   ..     ...   | <-- 4 frames
02  | G-4  ..   ..    ...   | <-- 1 frame
03  | G-4  ..   ..  EC3 | <-- 4 frames
etc. etc.

In this case you can use ECx on those uneven rows with 4 frames, EC1, EC2 or EC3. With the even rows the *** cut off is the only option. If your speed would be 4=1 instead then the even rows have 4 and uneven 1. With a steady tempo like 4=4 all rows have 4 frames.


Thanks Tomy! I went ahead and checked if what you said was the case with my track....and you're right! ECx wouldn't work at all on any of the even rows!

The whole thing with the timing is still a bit confusing to me. Let me see if I understand correctly. For example:
If I create a new track with timing 2=6, does that mean that even rows have 2 frames, allowing you to only use EC1 and EC2
while uneven rows have 6 frames, making EC1,EC2, EC3, EC4, and EC5 available to use?

Last edited by eclipsemod (Mar 17, 2015 3:28 pm)


That's great that you got it working! smile

Timing 2=6.
Yes, even rows have 2 frames. But that means only EC1 works, ECx has to be smaller than the number of frames, so EC2 won't have any effect.
And yes uneven rows have 6 frames, and you are correct in that EC1-5 do work.


If you aren't digging vgmm you can try deflemask. It feels much more user friendly to me. Just an opinion:) I use both.


I'm actually trying out deflemask now. I really like the UI. Also, there's something about the startup sound I really love lol.
But anyways, it's similar to VGM maker but different in some ways. So far, I kinda feel like tweaking sounds is a bit easier is VGM MM but I'm really trying to give deflemask a chance since I heard somewhere that VGM isn't really being updated anymore.

By the way, is it possible to extract genesis music and load it up in deflemask? I would really like to take a look at how genesis music is made/structured.

Last edited by eclipsemod (Mar 31, 2015 1:35 pm)