formerly known as ... well, I won't tell, forget it ...

FMS - Fully Modular Synthesizer

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download quite dated german documentation:

dsp.dvi - talking to /dev/dsp and playing a sound on it
sdlwave.dvi - displaying a fms-sound-file with SDL and SDL_gfx
fmsdevdoc.dvi - old FMS developer's documentation
fmsdevdocnew.dvi - slightly newer FMS documentation (includes basic documentation of the FMPlayer API)

Download FMS

Der Sternschnuppenzähler - romantische Geschenke (my personal homepage)
(c) 2003-2004 by Daniel Gruen

So what can you do with this Freakin' Monster Synthesizer?

FMS is basically a tool to generate all kinds of sounds. It should work on any up-to-date Linux system.
Breaking news: fms-1.0 is out!
Up to this day, the following features are implemented:

Playing sounds

  • with any frequency and volume
  • one after another or at the same time (mixer) or both
  • stereo (different sounds on different channels)
  • like speech synthesis [listen]
  • both on-the-fly playing with direct user access and asynchronous, pre-computed output
  • with all modulation options described below

Making noise

  • now although it tends to get noisy in any way, we mean real noise here
  • in 4 different ways
  • nearly-white noise
  • narrow band noise


  • amplitude (volume)
  • frequency
  • minima, maxima, amplitude and frequency of the modulation (here the "Fully Modular" comes to existence)
  • narrowness of the noise frequency band - experimental

Making music

  • some-kind-of-midi-mapping mode (sound + envelope = instrument, FMS midi file format)
  • auto-converter and player for MUS file format, listen [here] (Musplay)
  • auto-composer for those who like a rather modern kind of music - experimental
  • chords - experimental


  • spectrum of a sound
  • oscillogram of a sound


  • sounds as oscillograms in FMS file format (mathematical description, not complete wavetables)
  • sounds as Fourier overtone amplitudes
  • music in FMS midi format
  • FMS output in wave format
  • wave file sounds in FMS file format (auto-converter) - experimental


  • a somewhat ugly and extremely limited tcl/tk gui
  • FROCOR, an installation that connects the FMS sound backend to graphical interfaces and outputs
  • a fully modular Qt GUI - experimental, but I'll give you a [screenshot]
Some of these features might not be in the current "stable" release of FMS. If you would like them anyway, please drop me a note and I will send you the current development version.