A sound chip is an integrated circuit (i.e. "chip") designed to produce sound (see chiptune). It might be doing this through digital, analog or mixed-mode electronics. Sound chips normally contain things like oscillators, envelope controllers, samplers, filters and amplifiers. During the late 20th century, sound chips were widely used in arcade game system boards, video game consoles, home computers, and PC sound cards.
Programmable sound generators (PSG)
- General Instrument
- General Instrument AY-3-8910, used in arcade boards (DECO, Taito Z80, Konami Scramble, Irem M27, Konami 6809, Capcom Z80), computers (Colour Genie, Oric 1, Elektor TVGC, Mockingboard), and the Intellivision.
- General Instrument SP0250, LPC (linear predictive coding) speech synthesis chip used in the Sega G80 arcade system board.
- General Instrument SP0256, LPC speech synthesis chip.
- MOS Technology
- Texas Instruments
- Texas Instruments SN76477, used in the Space Invaders arcade system board.
- Texas Instruments SN76489 "DCSG", used in various arcade system boards, the Sega SG-1000 console, and the BBC Micro and Texas Instruments TI-99/4A computers.
- Texas Instruments SN76489A "DCSG", used in the ColecoVision, Sega Master System and Mega Drive/Genesis consoles, and the Sega Game Gear and Pico handheld game consoles.
- Texas Instruments SN76496, used in the Tandy 1000 computer.
Wavetable-lookup synthesis ("wavetable")
Note: Wavetable-lookup synthesis chips are sometimes incorrectly referred as wavetable synthesis.
- Namco WSG (Waveform Sound Generator), used in several Namco arcade system boards, including Namco Pac-Man and Namco Galaga.
- Namco 15xx (WSG), used in the Namco Super Pac-Man arcade system board.
- Namco 52xx (Audio Processor), used in the Namco Galaga and Namco Pole Position arcade system boards.
- Namco 54xx (Audio Generator), used in the Namco Pole Position arcade system board.
- Namco CUS30, used in the Namco System 1, Namco Thunder Ceptor and System 86 arcade boards.
- Namco 163, used in Namco-produced Famicom games.
Frequency modulation synthesis (FM synth)
- Yamaha YM2413 (a.k.a. OPLL), used in the Japanese Sega Master System, and in the MSX in MSX Music cartridges like the FM-PAC and internally in several Japanese models by Panasonic, Sony and Sanyo
- Yamaha YM2203 (a.k.a. OPN), used in some 80's arcade games and the NEC PC-88 and PC-98 computers
- Yamaha YM2151 (a.k.a. OPM), used in mid-80's to mid-90's arcade games (the most prolific FM chip used in arcades), the Sharp X68000 computer, and the Yamaha SFG-01 and SFG-05 FM Sound Synthesizer Unit cartridges for the MSX
- Yamaha YM2608 (a.k.a. OPNA), used in the NEC PC-88 and PC-98 computers
- Yamaha YM2610 (a.k.a. OPNB), used in the SNK Neo Geo console
- Yamaha YM2612 (a.k.a. OPN2), used in the Sega Mega Drive / Genesis console and FM Towns computer
- Yamaha YM3526 (a.k.a. OPL)
- Yamaha Y8950 (a.k.a. MSX-AUDIO, very similar to Yamaha YM3526), used in MSX-Audio cartridges for the MSX: Panasonic FS-CA1, Toshiba HX-MU900, and Philips NMS-1205
- Yamaha YM3812 (a.k.a. OPL2), used in AdLib and early Sound Blaster sound cards for the PC
- Yamaha YMF262 (a.k.a. OPL3), used in Sound Blaster Pro 2.0 and later cards for the PC
- Yamaha YMF278 (a.k.a. OPL4), used in the Moonsound cartridge for the MSX computer
- Yamaha YMF288 (a.k.a. OPN3), used in the NEC PC-98 computer
- Yamaha YMF7xx (Embedded audio chipset in some laptops and soundcards)
Pulse-code modulation (PCM, sample-based)
- Sound generators of the 1980s home computers - Has a list of chips, pictures, datasheets, etc.