To play MIDI files so they sound good, you need 3 things:

                 1.  A good sound card.

                 2.  Good speakers. 

                 3.  High-quality MIDI files - made with care. 


          SOUNDBLASTER sound cards with Soundfont technology for use  

          with MIDI files are recommended.


          I rate these MIDI's as:

                 *  Fairly Good

                 *  Excellent

                 *  Fantastic


          For example, I Got Rhythm (1930) is Excellent to Fantastic.

          Sock Hop (1955) is Awesome!!


          Some MIDI files available on the web are just awful.

          I tried to exclude the really bad stuff - MIDI files created by people who

          don't know how to make a decent-sounding MIDI file. It's not easy, and there

          are plenty of terrible-sounding MIDI files out there.

          None here, I hope.


          With a good sound card, good speakers, and a well-done MIDI file, the

          instruments sound realistic and the timing is natural.

          A saxophone sounds like a sax, a clarinet sounds like a clarinet,

          a piano sounds like a piano, a honkeytonk piano sounds like a honkeytonk piano,

          etc. And they sound like they're being played by musicians.


          In fact, many high-quality MIDI files ARE from recordings made by musicians.

          That's why they sound so realistic.


          Playing MIDI files on a LAPTOP computer with its tiny speakers will probably

          not sound good. Laptops are not recommended.


          I use:

          *  A DESKTOP PC

          *  A Soundblaster X-fi-Xtreme Audio sound card

          *  A sampling rate of 48 Khz for the Soundblaster card

          *  2 external IBM speakers, each about 8 inches tall

          *  Windows Media Player version 9 (old version)

          The results are excellent.


          This is not a "Hi-Fi' setup. It's just enough equipment to make MIDI files

          sound decent.


          The results have also been excellent with OLDER desktop PC's with

          OLDER Soundblaster cards. Having the latest and greatest hardware and software

          is not necessary to make these MIDI files sound good.


          Good speakers and a good sound card are all you need for these MIDI's.