Apogee Sound System Timbre Format

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Apogee Sound System Timbre Format
Format typeMusical Instrument
HardwareOPL, MIDI
Number of instruments256
Instruments named?No

The Apogee Sound System Timbre Format is an instrument bank format used by the Apogee Sound System library developed by 3D Realms. The 128 melodic and 128 percussion instrument limit was most likely chosen so that a single TMB file could store all the instruments for a General MIDI song. Files of this format are has .tmb extension.

File format

TMB files have no header and signature. The file contains 256 13-byte instrument entries (first 128 are melodic, and next 128 are percussion).

Data type Name OPL base register Description
UINT8 SAVEK[0] 0x20 Modulator characteristic (Mult, KSR, EG, VIB and AM flags)
UINT8 SAVEK[1] 0x23 Carrier characteristic (Mult, KSR, EG, VIB and AM flags)
UINT8 Level[0] 0x40 Modulator key scaling/output level
UINT8 Level[1] 0x43 Carrier key scaling/output level
UINT8 Env1[0] 0x60 Modulator attack/decay level
UINT8 Env1[1] 0x63 Carrier attack/decay level
UINT8 Env2[0] 0x80 Modulator sustain/release level
UINT8 Env2[1] 0x83 Carrier sustain/release level
UINT8 Wave[0] 0xE0 Modulator wave select
UINT8 Wave[1] 0xE3 Carrier wave select
UINT8 Feedback 0xC0 Feedback/connection
INT8 Transpose N/A Note offset for melodic instruments, and key number for percussion
INT8 Velocity N/A Velocity offset

The TMB format is directly based on IBK Format, and has first 12 bytes be same as in the IBK Format. Official MAKETMB.EXE utility (can be found with the source code of 3D Realms games in the Audio Library public folder) generates TMB files from the set of IBK files.


The following tools are able to work with files in this format.

Name PlatformPlay? Create new? Modify? Convert/export to other? Import from other? Access hidden data? Edit metadata? Notes
MAKETMB.EXE DOSNoYesNoYes; .tmbYes; .ibkNoNo Part of Apogee Sound System SDK
OPL3 Bank Editor Linux, Windows, macOSYesYesYesYes; manyYes; manyNoYes