Loading Time Problem with Loom CD Version

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TheBigCW
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Loading Time Problem with Loom CD Version

Post by TheBigCW » Tue May 26, 2009 10:02 pm

So I dug up my old Loom CD, then used this tutorial: http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=536748 that was on ubuntu.com to convert the audio track to mp3 then I tried to play it on the Wii and found the loading times to be HORRENDOUS. It was virtually impossible to play it. It took a couple minutes for the title screen to come up, and about a minute to examine each item.

HELP! What did I do wrong?

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eriktorbjorn
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Re: Loading Time Problem with Loom CD Version

Post by eriktorbjorn » Wed May 27, 2009 3:59 am

ScummVM has to determine where in the rather large audio file to play from. Apparently that's slow for MP3 files on some platforms. I'm told it's faster with Ogg Vorbis (and FLAC?), but I don't know if that is any help with the Wii version of ScummVM.

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Mr_Nick666
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Post by Mr_Nick666 » Wed May 27, 2009 8:14 am

Are you playing it off an SD card?

TheBigCW
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Post by TheBigCW » Wed May 27, 2009 8:00 pm

@mr_nick666: Yes, I am.

@ekitorbjorn: Do you know which out of ogg or flac is faster for loading? Thanks.

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Bossk
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Post by Bossk » Wed May 27, 2009 8:02 pm

I use ogg for all audio compression, works better than mp3 in most cases.

TheBigCW
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Post by TheBigCW » Wed May 27, 2009 8:04 pm

@bossk: Thanks, I'll try ripping the CDDA tracks to ogg and see if it works better.

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eriktorbjorn
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Post by eriktorbjorn » Wed May 27, 2009 8:12 pm

TheBigCW wrote: @ekitorbjorn: Do you know which out of ogg or flac is faster for loading? Thanks.
Sorry, no idea. All three were pretty much instantaneous on my desktop computer, last time I tried.

link6616
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Post by link6616 » Mon Jun 01, 2009 6:07 am

I've been pained by this too actually, as loom is basicially THE scumm game i care about.

I've tried with ogg, but it's still too much, it gets desynched with conversations which is really annoying.

EDIT: And i found it somewhat more annoying now that i've tried broken sword, and i know that they uee differing methods of playing the voices, but it's mildly annoying that the newer game which is more technically demading runs better then the older one. Rant end

Axel
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Post by Axel » Mon Jul 27, 2009 5:13 pm

link6616 wrote:but it's mildly annoying that the newer game which is more technically demading runs better then the older one
I hear you! Yes... it is very frustrating that I could make COMI (Monkey3) run on real time with all the voices enabled and synched, and I can not run Loom CD successfully :(

The audio lag basically makes it unplayable... whenever you want to play a note on the staff you have to wait like 30 secs per note!!!

I really think this is due Wii memory limitations and not really related to the scummvm port. The same audio track MP3/OGG compressed runs great on my PC running it from the same SD card.

But for Wii I have tried the FM-TOWNS version which runs fairly well, however, the voice acting from Loom CD is something priceless in the game and the FM-TOWNS version doesn't include voices. I really wish somebody found a way to play this game on the Wii as it should be played.

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dhewg
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Post by dhewg » Sat Aug 08, 2009 9:08 am

I just tried my loom cd version with flac encoded audio tracks. the game comes up instantly, there are no noticable lags on the voice-overs, and dialogs and playing notes look fine too.

what scummvm version did you use?
where do you load scummvm from?
on which media is the loom game located?

Axel
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Post by Axel » Mon Aug 10, 2009 11:10 pm

dhewg wrote:I just tried my loom cd version with flac encoded audio tracks. the game comes up instantly, there are no noticable lags on the voice-overs, and dialogs and playing notes look fine too.

what scummvm version did you use?
where do you load scummvm from?
on which media is the loom game located?
Thanks for answering dhewg, I'm sorry to reply late, but I was on vacations last week :)

I am using the original English CD-Talkie version with the audio track encoded to MP3 using LAME with the settings suggested in the scummvm readme file:

lame -t -q 0 -b 96 track1.wav track1.mp3

I am using scummvm wii port v0.13.1

I am using Wii Menu 3.4U and using HBC 1.01 to boot up scummvm.

I copied the data files among with the resulting track1.mp3 file to a Kingston 2GB SD Card.

Do you suggest me to try compressing the audio files with FLAC instead of MP3? Maybe MP3 compression algorythm is too heavy for the Wii processing, considering the resulting file is kind of large (~50 MB).

Do you think FLAC will give better performance than even Vorbis Ogg? I am not very familiar with the exact differences of these formats. What is your suggestion? Also, do you think I will get better performance in the SVN build than with 0.13.1?

Thank you very much!

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dhewg
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Post by dhewg » Tue Aug 11, 2009 6:10 am

Overall, all audio formats should be fine (apart from a known issue with ogg files converted by some older encoders).
The bottleneck we have on the Wii is the I/O throughput, meaning ScummVM can't read the data it wants off SD fast enough. So a rule of thumb is: the smaller the files, the less the Wii has to read - thus performing better ;)

In your case, I'd try:
1) grab a current snapshot (SD I/O got better) and just try that without modifying any loom files: http://buildbot.scummvm.org/snapshots/1 ... st.tar.bz2
2) try another SD card
3) scan/defrag your current SD card

if nothing helps, you really might try reencoding the files, but I really hope 1) is all you have to do to enjoy loom on Wii ;)

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MusicallyInspired
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Post by MusicallyInspired » Tue Aug 11, 2009 1:57 pm

The reason CMI and other games with speech play more smoothly is because they don't use CD audio for speech. Every sound in Loom is read from CD audio. It only makes sense that things would go out of sync when ths Wii has problems decoding so much data (the audio track for Loom is huge!).

That said, I've experienced slowdowns with MP3 frequently on the Wii with various games on various releases. Never had a problem with OGGs yet (except with running games from USB on the latest SVNs, has that been fixed yet incidentally?). I avoid MP3s like plague whenever possible anyway because they're not near as efficient as OGGs. For everything not just ScummVM.

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Red_Breast
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Post by Red_Breast » Tue Aug 11, 2009 10:07 pm

I thought I'd give this a try but I had no problems.
I even copied and pasted the syntax from one of the posts who had problems.
It started instantly. Everything was in sync.
I actually tried this as I played Lost In Time on my Wii recently which is similar in that it has one huge CD audio track. I thought it might cause problems on Wii but it didn't.
The version of ScummVM I used I'd just downloaded from the Buildbot (bottom of Downloads page for those that can't find it). r43242

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dhewg
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Post by dhewg » Thu Aug 13, 2009 4:17 pm

Same experience here, never experienced the problem. I can only recommend to try a snapshot. If the problem still exists, report back and we can look into it.

And no, I couldn't yet pinpoint the USB performance problem :\

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