Missing midi device after BIOS update (Asrock Z690 Extreme motherboard) [RESOLVED]

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Posts: 3
Joined: February 20, 2023 - 01:37
Missing midi device after BIOS update (Asrock Z690 Extreme motherboard) [RESOLVED]

Hello,

I've found quite an interesting "bug" if you will. I am not entirely sure if
its with MIDIMapper or some sort of hardware limitation.

I use MIDIMapper on two computer that previously had very close
specifications where the CPU, memory, motherboard, windows version, sound
card, and USB MIDI device were all the same as follows: i7 12700K, 64GB of
DDR4, Asrock Z690 Extreme(BIOS v1.17) , Windows 10 Pro 21H1, Sound Blaster
Audigy Rx, Roland UM-ONE Mk2. The GPU and Storage was different on both PCs
but I dont think that is relevant here. On both these computers I had them
setup to use effectively one of 5 MIDI devices that I could select at will
with MIDIMapper;

  • Microsoft GS Wavetable Synth
  • SB Audigy 5/Rx Synth A [4FC0]
  • SB Audigy 5/Rx Synth B [4FC0]
  • OmniMIDI
  • 2 UM-ONE

Both computers worked flawlessly with this setup for a bit over a year.
However, last week I got my hands on 13700K in exchange for one of my
12700K(someone needed it's AVX-512 support). One 1 of these PCs I updated the
BIOS from 1.17(First version for retail release) to v10.04 for 13th gen
support to use my new 13700K. Everything initially appeared to work fine but
I noticed that the SB Audigy 5/Rx Synth A/B [4FC0] options were missing from
MIDIMapper(2.0.3). At first I thought it might be an error with MIDIMapper so
I updated it to the latest 2.1.1 beta thinking this might fix it; It did not.

For the sound card drivers I am using Daniel K's Audigy support pack 8.0 on
both computers. I thought maybe the BIOS update effected the drivers somehow
so I Uninstalled the drivers and Re-installed them. This changed nothing.

Since I have 3 Sound Blaster Audigy Rx(s), 2 in these PCs and 1 spare, I
tried all 3 in the updated PC while uninstalling/reinstalling the drivers and
MIDIMapper each time I swapped one out; The SB Audigy 5/Rx Synth A/B [4FC0]
options never came back on the updated PC. Since I have a spare PCIe slot on
the Updated PC I tried the Sound Blasters in that slot with no change. I
tried using the last Audigy Support pack from Daniel K (v8.1) and that didn't
change anything. I double checked all BIOS settings on both PCs and made sure
they matched(outside the CPU settings obviously)

I verified each of the 3 Sound blasters on the outdated PC and confirmed all
3 worked with their SB Audigy 5/Rx Synth A/B [4FC0] options without needing
to reinstall the drivers or MIDIMapper. Just as a sanity check I did update
the drivers to those from the Audigy Support pack V8.1 and the SB Audigy 5/Rx
Synth A/B [4FC0] options remain in MIDIMapper on the Outdated PC.

Since I do still have one of the 12700K CPUs; I pulled it from the Outdated
PC, put it in the Updated PC, reverted the Updated PC's BIOS back to v1.17
and lo and behold; the SB Audigy 5/Rx Synth A/B [4FC0] options came back to
MIDIMapper (2.1.1 for the record). So I put the 13700K back in the system
after Re-updating the BIOS to v10.04 and the SB Audigy 5/Rx Synth A/B [4FC0]
options disappeared again!

I am not sure if this some new hardware limitation from the Z690 BIOS update
or a bug in the MIDIMapper Software, so I figured I'd share this here and see
if anyone has any ideas.

Posts: 122
Joined: September 25, 2013 - 16:38
Re: Missing midi device after BIOS update

Have you checked if Windows itself enumerates your SB HW synths?
Coolsoft Midi Mapper can only see Midi out ports that can be enumerated by midiOutGetNumDevs/midiOutGetDevCaps.
Despite the fact that in Windows 10 a built in Midi mapper is missing it handles Midi out ports the same way as earlier Windows versions.
This means that you can see the available Midi out ports in any Midi software that enables you to select ports explicitly. 
E.g. you can try the 'mixer /listmidi' command in DosBox. Or you can check the Setup-> Output Device list in Van Basco player and in Falcosoft Midi player. Or you can try other sequencer software like Sekaiju.
This way you can determine if your problem is Coolsoft Midi Mapper specific or not. Most likely it is not and I suspect that your SB HW synths will not be available from any Midi software when you use the new BIOS version.

Posts: 3
Joined: February 20, 2023 - 01:37
Re: Missing midi device after BIOS update

I did check to see if DOSBOX or a doomport called "Zandronum" would see the SB synths since as you mentioned: some programs like DOSBOX will list midi devices without the aid or installation of MIDIMapper. Zandronum is like DOSBOX in that it can directly select and use a MIDI device without any additional software. Sadly, neither program could see the SB synths. I guess this rules out MIDIMapper as the problem.

I did find a work around but its a bit janky. If I Disable the BIOS option "4G Decode" the SB synths come back with the new BIOS for 13th gen CPUs. Re-Enabling 4G Decode makes the SB Synths disappear again. I have not had a chance to read up on whatever 4G Decode is but its repeatable to make the SB Synths disappear or reappear from everything (Midimapper included) by toggling that option in the BIOS.

I was also notified that just a couple days ago Asrock released a new BIOS update which allegedly fixes a bunch of stuff so I will try that too.

Posts: 1932
Joined: March 25, 2012 - 01:19
Re: Missing midi device after BIOS update

As far as I can read, that BIOS option enables device IOs to be mapped on memory addresses higher than the first 4GB of memory space (ref here).

Maybe the SB driver does not support such a higher mapping addressing, so it can't detect the board...

Posts: 3
Joined: February 20, 2023 - 01:37
Re: Missing midi device after BIOS update
XaviarCraig wrote:
I was also notified that just a couple days ago Asrock released a new BIOS update which allegedly fixes a bunch of stuff so I will try that too.

So I had a chance to try the new BIOS version (v 11.01) and it initially had the same problem that 9.04 and 10.04 (with the 13700K) had; the Soundblaster Rx midi synths not showing up in anything, but the sound card's normal sound output works.

Setting "4G Decode" to Disable worked like it did for 9.04 and 10.04 but more interestingly; Re-enabling 4G Decode did not make the SB Synths disappear from anything. I toggled the setting multiple times and did not see the synths disappear again. I reflashed the bios back to v10.04 and it did have the same problem as before; 4G Decode being Enabled would disabled the SB Synths.

After upgrading the BIOS back to V11.01 I had the same initial problem of the SB Synths not showing up but after the first time 4G Decode was disabled; the SB Synths returned and re-enabling 4G Decode did not disable the SB Synths. I also toggled 4G Decode several times on v11.01 again to verify the Synths would not disappear.

At this point I am willing to say it probably had something to do with Asrock's bios and nothing else. Sorry for the false alarm but hopefully if anyone else runs into this issue they find a similar fix!

Posts: 1932
Joined: March 25, 2012 - 01:19
Re: Missing midi device after BIOS update
XaviarCraig wrote:
if anyone else runs into this issue they find a similar fix!

This thread will surely be usefut to other Asrock Z690 Extreme users.
Thanks for your detailed tests and for reporting them back here 👍

NOTE: I've edited thread (added MB model) to make it ease finding it...