The Tuneful Eight

In 2018, Steffen Goerzig approached me with an idea for a new demo and a world first: 8 SID chips in one C64. Almost one year later, we've released the demo at Evoke 2019 in cologne, winning second place in the Alternative Platform competition.




Update 04/2020: Makke has released a remix of the tune. Check it out:

The Tuneful Eight Remix by Makke


The demo as shown at Evoke, running on a pimped Ultimate 64 built by Marty (Radwar) with 4 FPGASIDs and 4 UltiSIDs:

Privacy notice: By playing this media file, external contents will be loaded from YouTube™, by which personalised data may be transferred there, and external cookies might be set. Learn more at YouTube™'s privacy notice.


Song recorded from real SID chips, spiced with editor screencap and oscillators:

Privacy notice: By playing this media file, external contents will be loaded from YouTube™, by which personalised data may be transferred there, and external cookies might be set. Learn more at YouTube™'s privacy notice.


Song composed and programmed by Markus LMan Klein

C64 recording by Christian SID Spieler Thamerus

The Tuneful Eight illustration and logo by James Joe Svärd.

Cheesecutter tool by Abaddon


Further Credits from the original demo:

Code and concept: Steffen Goerzig

Tools: MarkusC64

Ultimate 64: Gideon Zweijtzer

FPGASID: Andreas Beermann

Hardware: Martin Marty Plum




Uri Nierbecken 23
23/08/2019 09:10
Where to download this updated WinVICE V3.2 that can handle 8 SID's, which was mentioned in the demo?

Markus Klein
23/08/2019 11:45
Hey Uri, it was an inofficial build which is not available to the public. At the moment, we're talking to the Vice team to encourage them to officially support more SIDs.

background / Abyss Connection
24/08/2019 00:23
Hey LMan,
very cool music-release on Evoke 2019. SID-Sounds without hardware-limits ...
Nice ! More !

Markus Klein
24/08/2019 10:05
Thanks mate!

There's always more! :-)

Paul Irvine
25/08/2019 14:30
Hi Markus, LOVE the demo, just been able to listen to it on the very latest (today) Hoxs64 and its superb...

I noticed in the text talking about new firmware for the Ultimate64, which is a bit of hardware I don't own but I do own an Ultimate 1541++ which can do an extra sid, was there any talk about this, to be honest I don't even know if its possible but thought I'd ask?

Whatever the answer I just want to repeat that the demo and tune was awesome....Thank you.

Uri Nierbecken 23
27/08/2019 09:13
Wow, now HOXS has support for 8 SIDS suddenly in the builds came out some days ago!

Listened to "The Tuneful Eight" today with this emulator and it is a superb demo, a massive sound-experience with so much SID's! Good work. Really great.

And also good work from the HOXS programer for making it possible, to emulate such a great demo so good! And especially so fast, just needed some days for integrating such a function. Impressive.

Markus Klein
27/08/2019 10:25
@Paul: Many thanks for your kind words! Alas I don't think it will be possible on the Ultimate 1541++, the talks were about the Ultimate 64 only.

@Uri: Indeed, that was super awesome by the HOXS coders! Thanks man!

Andy K1
28/08/2019 21:56
Markus, one question. Today i saw, that now a WinVICE build was made public, which is also possible to handle the 8-SID's.

But one question i have to this. Why the normal WinVICE V3.2 was used, which had the bad V3 SID-filters and not this release here for example


which had the SID-filters from WinVICE V2.4 brought back to WinVICE V3.2.

The newer SID-Filters, which was used in WinVICE since Version V3.1, made problems in some songs, like for example in the song "Klogge"


When this SID was transformed to a prg (for example with PSID64) and then played in the normal WinVICE V3.2, then you hear what i mean. The bass sounds totally overdriven. When you listen with older VICE versions, like for example the mentioned V2.4 or with my linked version, to this song, it will sound normal like it should, without these problems. And the "Klogge" SID is not the only one, which had problems with the newer SID-Filters.

Therefore it would have been much better and more senseful, porting the 8SID support to the linked WinVICE V3.2 which had the older and better V2.4 SID-filters inside. Because when people can listen to 8SIDS they should do it without those problems like they are in the SID-Filter from WinVICE V3.1 on.

Maybe anybody can do this and use these patched WinVICE version which i linked, to put the 8SID suppoert inside?

In HOXS "The Tuneful Demo" sounds very good, by the way.

29/08/2019 07:49
@Uri Nierbecken 23: https://csdb.dk/release/index.php?id=181167

Uri Nierbecken 23
29/08/2019 18:06
Thanks, great. Now this VICE-version which was mentioned in the Demo itself, was made public and i tried around with it.

Sadly it's true what "Andy K1" wrote above, that some Sid's make problems with the newer Sid-Filter from version V3.1 on. This mentioned "Klogge" SID is just one of those problematic songs.

28/12/2019 23:55
just a heads up... my 6581 SID chip broke the same day I tried this demo on my Ultimate (I had 2 real sids inside)... the 6581 now only plays 2 of the 3 channels... The same thing has happened to someone else I know with the same setup.

I'd not try this demo with real SID chips... I can't confirm it was caused by this and i know we're dealing with fragile very old hardware, but I'm not going to be running this demo or anything so experimental again until I can rule it out as a possible cause.

Michael Richmond
28/12/2019 23:59
My 6581 also broke after trying this demo with two real SIDs and 6 emulated ones on the new Ultimate 64 firmware, one channel now not working on 6581, 8580 is working fine.

02/01/2020 15:14
@Michael Richmond and @Hayesmaker64: I doubt that this has anything to do with the demo (or even the U64). The demo doesn't alter anything on the U64 setup at all! You are the one that sets up the sockets and the remaining needed UltiSID, so the demo plays correctly. If you just want to play the demo without the use of real SID, just install the cfg file that was added to the 1.26 firmware release. To be safe, disable both SID sockets in the configuration.
While testing during the development of this demo I tried several combinations of SID and SID replacements, to archive the best possible audio solution. None of my 6581(R4AR)/8580 or any of the replacements (ARMSID, SwinSID ulti, FPGASID) got broken. But maybe you should really keep in mind that all of the real SIDs are now nearly or above 30 years old sensitive MOS devices and might break out of the blue, just because only changing the sockets. ESD is a bitch!

Jeroen Tel
09/09/2020 01:30
Bloody Fantastic! I'm proud of you MoN guys... haha... =D

Leave a comment:

To prevent automated submissions, this form requires you to enter a confirmation code. The code is displayed in the image below. Enter the code exactly as it appears. If you have problems reading the code, request a new one by submitting the form.

Demoscene Music - SIDs and more