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How to use AtomENCD

A Tutorial for Sonic Heroes

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Loop from A to B and Convert to ADX with AtomENCD

Hello Gamebanana/Sonic Heroes modders. This tutorial is about looping and converting the Sonic Heroes background music with AtomENCD.
First, we need to understand what is this tool, what can you do with it, what is the file extension ADX and what tools/apps do you need to edit the audio files.

1. 01.1) ADX, What is it?

The file extension ADX is a music file where you can loop songs from A to B using samples. This file not only is located in Sonic Heroes but in Shadow the Hedgehog, Sonic Adventure DX (Steam) and others too. This file was developed by CRI Middleware. I never tested in other games but Heroes.. :eyes:

2. 01.2) What is AtomENCD

As mentioned earlier, AtomENCD is a tool for you to loop songs from A to B. It was developed by DuIslingr and you can find the tool on GitHub or in a toolkit I created: Sonic Heroes Starter Pack along with other modding tools.

3. 01.3) Do I need something more to loop the songs?

Yes. You will need Audacity to copy-paste your sample numbers in case you want to loop it. Also, you can check the audio Frequency and Format needed [see 02.2) Audio Requirements]. It's free and you can download it on Audacity's official website. You can use any other audio editing softwares (GoldenWave, FL Studio, Adobe Audition) but since Audacity is free, I recommended for y'all.

4. 02.1) Getting Started

First of all, install AtomENCD from GitHub or from SHSP.
Extract the folder and place it wherever you want. This is what it looks like after extracted:


Next, open the executable file [AtomENCD.exe]:

Before you import the song you want to make sure you have this requirements on your audio:

5. 02.2) Audio Requirements

Extension: .wav, .mp3
Frequency: 48000Hz or less
Format: 16-bit, 24-bit and 32-bit
Bitrate: 1411kbit/s or less

You can check the Frequency and Format on Audacity and with Bitrate the Windows Default Properties - Details:
  

6. 02.3) Importing the file and work with the tool

Now that you checked the file(s) you want to loop and/or convert, it's time to import them.
Click on [...] to import the file:

I will use Sonic Advance 3 Sunset Hill music as an example.

Once selected, Activate the Loop button so you can loop the audio:


If you want to loop all the music (from start to end) just leave the button selected on Loop All. You don't need to write the sample numbers so skip to the next section [02.5) ReSampling, Encode Quality, Codec and Encode]

If you want to loop from two specific regions, select Custom Loop. Here you will write the sample numbers using Audacity.

7. 02.4) Samples

NOTE: In this case I will use Audacity, as referred earlier. If you have any other program and if you don't know how to change the time into samples, PM me or contact me on Discord (available on my profile)

Download/Open Audacity and import the file you are about to loop:


Next, make sure you change your tempo to samples, by clicking on the down arrow and then samples:
   

It should be like this:

(Make sure you have Start and End of Selection too)

Now with all set, select the region A and the region B. The highlighted part is the loop: 


Make sure it sound well and it perfectly loops from A to B. To listen in loop play, hold [Shift] button on your keyboard and click on Play. It should change the Play icon to a Loop icon:


To simply listen near point B, click on the Quick Play bar with the [Shift] button hold. It will repeat, going back to point A you selected:


After you selected and get satisfied with the results, write the samples into the Start and End boxes on AtomENCD - Loop Options:


8. 02.5) ReSampling, Encode Quality, Codec and Encode

Now that you have the region looped and wrote it on Loop Option boxes, you will set your resampling options, encode quality and codec. There's no limit and quality so putting in High Quality will not affect the conversion at all.
Standard Options:

High Options:


Make sure your Codec is set as ADX:


Everything is ready to Convert the file to *.ADX. Click on Encode to start the conversion:

Once you clicked on Encode, you will name the file. you will write the song name with the extension.
example: SNG_STG01.adx

sorry, as i'm portuguese, my PC is in portuguese too _(:3/

The converted file will save on the same folder you imported the original file.

9. 03.1) BGM Names, Replacement or Mod Loader

With the file converted. It's time to move it to the Sonic Heroes' Background Music folder
The folder directory is, for default: C:\Program Files\SEGA\SONICHEROES\dvdroot\bgm


You will see a bunch of *.adx files with different names (wow moment). The following names are from respective zones (stages, jingles, themes...)

  • SNG_BTL0X (where X varies from 1 to 5): 2P Battle stages
  • SNG_E0XXX (where XXX varies from 404, 017 and 117): End Theme (Staff Roll Version)
  • SNG_EVXX (where XX varies from 10 to 13): Event Music
  • SNG_SPSTGX (where X varies from 1 to 2): Special Stage Music
  • SNG_STG (to many variations; ones with numbers and others with numbers and letters): Stage BGM; Boss BGM starts in SNG_STG20
  • SNG_SYSX (where X varies from 1 to 4): Menu BGM
  • SNG_TBSFAX (where X varies from 1 to 5): Team Blast sounds
  • SNG_TITLE: Title Sequence; SNG_TITLE1 is with intro and SNG_TITLE2 without intro
  • SNG_V0X_YY (where X varies from 1 to 5 and YY is the Team shorter name): Themes
For more information, check the Sonic Retro SCHG/Sonic Heroes - Sound Editing

In case of replacement: Create a backup of the folder or the file(s) you want to replace, copy the retail name(s) of the stage and paste on the modded one(s).

In case of using a mod loader: Use Reloaded Mod Loader II as a mod loader. Information of how to place your mods on R-II, Read Sewer's Getting Started: Modifications and Publishing Your Mods.



Thank you for your patience by reading this long tutorial. I hope this really helps you improving Sonic Heroes ^-^
If you have any doubt or questions, feel free to comment/PM me/message me on Discord.
I will probably create a video for lazybones xD
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