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GBSPLAY(1) Gameboy sound player GBSPLAY(1)


gbsplay - Gameboy sound player


gbsplay [options] gbs-file [start-subsong [stop-subsong] ]


gbsplay emulates the sound hardware of the Nintendo Gameboy. It is able to play the sounds from a Gameboy module dump (.GBS format) over /dev/dsp and other sound drivers.


Set endianness to endian. Valid values are b, l and n for big, little and native endian respectively.
Set fadeout time to fadeout-time seconds. Instead of cutting the subsong off hard, do a soft fadeout. Default value is 3 seconds.
Set subsong gap to subsong-gap seconds. Before playing the next subsong after the subsong timeout, subsong-gap seconds of silence will be played. Default value is 2 seconds.
Display short help and exit.
Set output high-pass type to filter. Valid values are dmg (Gameboy Classic), cgb (Gameboy Color) and off (no filter). Default value is dmg.
Enable loop mode. After the last subsong has been played, playback starts again with the first subsong. Default is no loop.
Select sound output plugin plugin. Select list to view a list of all available output plugins. Default value depends on compilation options.
Be quieter, reduce verbosity. Can be applied multiple times. Default verbosity is 3.
Set the samplerate to samplerate Hz. Default value is 44100Hz.
Set the refresh delay to refresh-delay milliseconds. Larger values will lower CPU usage, but things as subsong changes, fadeouts, reactions to keypresses and the on-screen display will be delayed. Default value is 33 milliseconds.
Set subsong timeout to subsong-timeout seconds. When a subsong has been played for the given time, the player will skip to the next subsong. A timeout of 0 seconds disables automatic subsong changes. Default value is 120 seconds.
Set silence timeout to silence-timeout seconds. When a subsong contains silence for the given time, the player will skip to the next subsong. Default value is 2 seconds.
Increase verbosity, print more information. Can be applied multiple times. Default verbosity is 3.
Display version number and exit.
Play subsongs in shuffle mode. Every subsong will be played once in random order.
Play subsongs in random mode. Like shuffle mode (-z), but a subsong can be played multiple times.
Mute channel 1 on start.
Mute channel 2 on start.
Mute channel 3 on start.
Mute channel 4 on start.
The sound file to play. Must be in uncompressed .GBS format.
The subsong from the sound file to play first. If not specified, the default song declared in the sound file will be played unless shuffle (-z) or random mode (-Z) are active. An out-of-bounds number will be clipped to the possible range of subsongs.
gbsplay exits after this subsong has been played. If not specified or out-of-bounds, gbsplay will exit after playing the last subsong, unless in loop mode (-l).


gbsplay supports basic keyboard control. The following commands are recognized:

Skip to the previous subsong.
Skip to the next subsong.
Quit gbsplay.
Toggle play/pause.
Mute/unmute channel 1.
Mute/unmute channel 2.
Mute/unmute channel 3.
Mute/unmute channel 4.


Output plugins are sometimes called plugouts because that's shorter, so don't be confused. Not all of the plugins listed here may be available, see `gbsplay -o list'.

Use the ALSA sound driver for sound output.
Alternative implementation of the MIDI output plugin (see midi below). Should export more accurate note off events (the length register is taken into account), but generated MIDI files will be more complicated and fine grained and probably not suitable for editing or printing a score.
Use the OSS sound driver for sound output via /dev/dsp.
Use the DirectSound sound driver for sound output on Microsoft Windows.
Dump IO calls to the Gameboy sound hardware to stdout. This reduces the verbosity to 0 (see -q) because stdout is used for the dumped data.
Write a simple MIDI conversion of the song into a seperate file per subsong. The files are called gbsplay-%d.mid, where %d is replaced with the subsong number. The files are created in the current working directory and existing files are silently overwritten. Only channels 1 to 3 are converted to MIDI, because channel 4 contains noise data that can't be converted into MIDI note events. Every GBS channel is exported to a seperate MIDI channel. When multiple voices share a channel, they will not be separated in the output. The conversion is rather basic and complicated GBS files using tricks and hacks will not be converted properly.
Use the NAS sound driver for sound output to a Network Audio Server.
Use the Pulseaudio sound driver for sound output.
Dump the raw audio stream to stdout. This reduces the verbosity to 0 (see -q) because stdout is used for the dumped data. The raw audio is always stereo (2 channels), 16 bit signed PCM. Sample rate and endianess can be set via -E and -r.


Default location of the global configuration file.
User configuration file.


If you encounter bugs, please report them via or write to <>.


gbsplay was written by Tobias Diedrich <> (with contributions from others, see README).


gbsplay is licensed under GNU GPL v1 or, at your option, any later version.


gbsinfo(1), gbsplayrc(5)

unknown Tobias Diedrich